The Art of Chimney Repointing: Restoring the Integrity of Your Fireplace

Chimney repointing is an essential part of repairing your chimney. Due to exposure to the elements, your chimney’s structure can start to deteriorate. This occurs when the mortar starts crumbling away and the bricks begin to loosen, leading to safety hazards.

Repointing is the repair process where the old mortar is replaced with fresh mortar, and the chimney’s bricks are secured more firmly in place. It also prevents water gaps from forming as cracks and gaps are sealed using mortar and sealant.

Let’s explore more about the art of chimney repointing and how it can restore the integrity of your fireplace.

The Art of Chimney Repointing

Chimney repointing involves scraping off old mortar and replacing it with a fresh mixture. If you’re doing the repointing yourself, you should think about the safety protocols you need to follow.

Let’s explore the steps involved in chimney repointing.

1. Inspect the Chimney

You cannot know where to begin replacing the mortar without inspecting the chimney properly. Some mortar may seem fine from the outside, but if you scrape the joints, you will find it’s ready to come loose. Therefore, a good inspection involves checking various parts of your chimney’s structure for integrity issues.

During the inspection, the best tool to use is a screwdriver or a tuck pointer. The flaunching may reveal holes. If you encounter this issue, know that a chimney repair is required. Since these holes can allow water to enter your home, checking your chimney’s flaunching properly is important.

2. Scrape the Old Mortar Out

Using a screwdriver or tuck pointer, you should scrape the old mortar out of the chimney’s joints. Once it has come loose, you can tap the structure with a hammer to remove all the particles.

Since you’re adding fresh mortar, digging up to 2.5 centimeters deep into your chimney joints is best. Taking this step ensures that the mortar you add later provides enough stability around the bricks.

3. Spray the Bricks With Water

Playing your chimney with water after scraping all the mortar out of the joints is important. It ensures wetness and helps your new mortar settle into the joints. Also, it prevents the mortar from drying out too quickly since it needs to stay wet until it bonds with the brickwork.

You can use a handheld garden sprayer to spray every joint and ensure enough water gets into the cracks.

4. Create a Mixture of Mortar

Mortar is sand and cement in a mixture. It is stronger than just cement since sand is a strong building material. If your chimney is over fifty years old, you may need to create a lime-based mixture. A good ratio to work with is 75% sand and 25% lime.

However, if you’re dealing with a modern property, you should use 75% sand and 25% cement. Add water to get the right consistency and create the perfect mixture for repointing your chimney.

5. Apply the Mortar to the Chimney’s Joints

The repointing process involves applying the newly made mortar mixture to the chimney’s joints. Using a tuck pointer, you can use a board as a ‘tray’ to hold the mortar and apply it to the joints.

Once all the joints have been sufficiently coated with mortar, you can wait for it to settle into the brickwork and provide stability.

How Often Should Chimneys be Repointed?

You should only repoint your chimney after observing its structural integrity. Depending on your location, you will experience different weather conditions. Frost, rainfall, and hot summer days can affect your chimney’s structure. So, you must inspect it once every few months to check for any damages.

Generally, you can expect your chimney to last between thirty and fifty years. This is a long time, meaning a professional chimney sweep can add decades to your chimney’s lifespan. However, you should keep a closer eye on your chimney in extreme weather conditions. If your area experiences natural disasters like cyclones and earthquakes, you may need to repair your chimney in only a few years.

Hire Professional Chimney Repair East Hartford, CT, for Chimney Repointing

Creative Masonry is the number one choice in Connecticut for chimney repair East Hartford, CT. It provides high-quality chimney services related to repairs, maintenance, cleaning, and more. If your chimney needs to be repointed, you should hire only the best professionals in the business.

Contact CM by filling out a form on their website and get a free estimate for your chimney sweep in East Hartford, CT. Call them at (860)225-9178 to inquire about their complete range of services.

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