Freshen up Your Masonry Chimney – Hire Lords Chimney for Expert Tuckpointing Services
The fairytale has it that the Big Bad Wolf huffed and puffed and couldn’t blow the brick house down, but brick is actually more vulnerable to destruction than its storied reputation would have you believe. Though brick is beloved by many homeowners for its durability and resiliency, we can also speak to some of its weaknesses.
Over time, all brick will sustain damage and begin to show wear and tear from neglect, age, and weather. But chimney brick can be especially at risk, as chimneys are located above the roofline where they are directly exposed to wind, changing temperatures, and corrosive buildup. Mortar especially proves to be vulnerable to the elements. This cement mix is soft and water-absorbent. If your brick or mortar is in disrepair or if it has not been professionally waterproofed, you may find that water is leaking into your chimney. Luckily, tuckpointing can be employed to repair eroded mortar.
When you find yourself in need of tuckpointing services, call Lords Chimney. With nearly two decades of experience, we’ve been revitalizing brick and mortar chimneys all throughout Houston and Beaumont. Call 281-497-4000 or use our online request form to book an appointment today.
What Is Tuckpointing?
Tuckpointing is a masonry technique used to restore the mortar joints between bricks or stones in a chimney. The process involves removing crumbling or cracked mortar and replacing it with new mortar that’s been mixed to match the color and composition of the existing mortar as much as possible.
Tuckpointing not only reinforces the structural integrity of the chimney but also improves its appearance and your home’s overall curb appeal.
What is the difference between tuckpointing & repointing?
Tuckpointing and repointing are similar and the terms tend to be used interchangeably. However, they are technically two different methods of mortar repair.
- Repointing means we remove old mortar, prepare the area in between the bricks for new material, and install new mortar. Without proper repointing, bricks will bear an uneven load, and your chimney could start to lean.
- Tuckpointing also removes old mortar and installs new mortar, but with one important difference – a tuckpointing job adds a highlight of a different color of mortar to help create a finished, aesthetically-pleasing look.
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How Do I Know if I Need Tuckpointing?
You may notice that sections of your mortar are flaking or crumbling, but is the damage an aesthetic issue or is it severe enough to call in a chimney company? Even if you think you can live with a little chipping, you should really schedule an appointment for a chimney inspection so that you can rest assured that your chimney is safe and structurally sound – and that the damage doesn’t get any worse.
At Lords Chimney, our chimney technicians are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA). That means we’re skilled professionals who can identify problems accurately and can provide expert-level tuckpointing services, no matter how severe the issue is. You can easily schedule an appointment online or call us at 281-497-4000.
There are a few trademark signs that we look for during our inspection to determine whether or not your chimney is a good candidate for tuckpointing.
- We can see gaps and cracks in the mortar. Visible cracks, gaps, or openings are the most obvious sign that your chimney could benefit from tuckpointing services. We’ll carefully assess your chimney to locate any questionable areas.
- Some of the mortar is loose or missing. If there are pieces of mortar lying on the ground around the chimney, or if loose mortar can be easily removed with a putty knife, it’s a clear indication that the joints need attention.
- There’s movement in the bricks. There are components of your chimney, like the damper, that should move easily. The brickwork isn’t one of those parts. If bricks can be easily moved it means the mortar has deteriorated to the point that it can no longer do its job in keeping the structure together.
- There are signs of water damage. Chimneys and water are old foes. Exterior signs of water intrusion can include the growth of green vegetation or a white, chalky substance known as efflorescence.
How Is Tuckpointing Done?
Now that we’ve explained what tuckpointing is, we know you’re probably wondering what the process looks like.
- The old, damaged mortar joints need to be removed. We use specialized tools, like a chisel and grinder, to get this part done.
- Then, we’ll clean the surface of your chimney to get rid of mortar dust, dirt, and grime. This may include our pressure washing services.
- For a seamless look, we’ll prepare a mortar mixture that matches the composition and color of the original mortar used in the chimney.
- We’ll fill the joints with the newly mixed mortar using a tool called a pointing trowel.
- Once the new mortar is in, it needs time to cure. This usually takes 24 to 48 hours.
- After the mortar has cured, we’ll gently brush or sponge the surface to create a texture that blends with the rest of the brickwork.
- To cap it off, we’ll seal the chimney to protect it from future water damage. Lord’s Chimney uses ChimneySaver products exclusively .
How Long Does Tuckpointing Last?
Tuckpointing can last anywhere from 25 to 30 years with proper maintenance and care. The lifespan of a tuckpointing job can also be affected by weather conditions, the quality of the work, and the types of materials used. Here in Houston and Beaumont, we’re no strangers to rainfall and high temperatures. That can be a rough combination for masonry, so it’s possible that you may need tuckpointing services a bit more often.
How Much Does Tuckpointing Cost?
If you have begun to collect estimates to have your chimney tuckpointed, you may be finding that the prices are all over the map. We are proud to offer a competitive rate on a tuckpointing job that will last you for the life of your chimney. That said, for an accurate cost estimate, we’ll need to first assess your structure and needs.
Also, please note that not all masons or bricklayers know how to properly build or repair a chimney, which requires special care and construction considerations. For instance, it is important to use the correct grade of brick and the right mortar mix to stand up to extreme heat.
Only trust a certified chimney professional to do chimney-related work. If you live in the greater Houston and Beaumont areas, we’ll be happy to come out and give you a free estimate. Give us a call or request your appointment online today.
Can I Do Tuckpointing Myself or Should I Hire a Professional?
If you have experience in masonry work and the correct tools, you can give it a shot. But tuckpointing is a tall task for a first-time DIY project – literally. Your chimney goes well beyond your roofline and that would call for you to work at heights you might not be comfortable with if you don’t have the right safety equipment.
We know what you’re thinking – wouldn’t it be cheaper if I tried it myself? It may seem that way at first. That said, tuckpointing is a bit more complex than those YouTube tutorials have led you to believe. It can be hard to get the mortar mixture just right and if it’s not done correctly, you probably won’t love the results. A subpar tuckpointing job could also endanger the structural integrity of your chimney and the safety of you and your home is our top priority at the end of the day.
All in all, a DIY job done poorly can leave you with a not-great-looking chimney that’s more prone to damage – and if repairs are needed, you’ll only cost yourself more money than a professional tuckpointing service would have cost in the first place.
Trust Lords Chimney for the Best Tuckpointing Services in Town
The presence of a few gaps and cracks doesn’t mean your chimney’s best days are behind it. Let Lords Chimney restore your masonry chimney to its former glory with tuckpointing services.
Reach out to us by phone at 281-497-4000 or schedule an appointment online. Our customer service team is standing by and ready to help!