Most basements and crawl spaces in Tennessee and Kentucky are made out of concrete blocks joined with mortar and most homes feature brick facades. Cracked bricks can be a sign of larger foundation and water penetration issues, which should be resolved first. Proper brickwork protects the integrity of any underlying repairs and restores a home’s exterior.

Can cracked brick be repaired?

Crumbling brick can absolutely be repaired. However, the most important part is to make sure you address the underlying cause of your damaged brick before you attempt any cosmetic repairs to the brick itself. A brick façade that’s crumbling or cracking is likely to be affected by water infiltration, which is a signal of foundation issues that will need to be repaired first. Once the underlying problem has been fixed, our brick repair experts can ensure your facade is good as new again. We will go further into our method for brick wall and mortar repair below.


Tuckpointing photo

Tuckpointing

Once the structural integrity of a home has been restored through proper foundation repair, it’s important to replace any damaged mortar using a technique called “tuckpointing” or “repointing.” Just patching over splitting walls or cracked bricks will leave a home vulnerable to water penetration, meaning anything that is done will simply be a cosmetic patch that will fail over time.

Tuckpointing is a technique used by masons to fill gaps between mortar and brick by chiseling out the existing, damaged mortar and adding new cement. The new material is color-coordinated to match the brick so that your repair looks seamless and natural. In worst-case scenarios, tuckpointing will include removing damaged or cracked bricks and replacing them with new, matching bricks. This not only restores the look of a foundation or façade, but it also protects a home from the elements.

At USS, tuckpointing is included with foundation repair and not a stand-alone service. We don’t want to waste our customer’s money with a service that will fail over time. If you notice cracking or other brick issues, contact USS for a free evaluation of your home’s foundation.

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Garage Lintel Repair

The lintel above a garage door is usually the longest in a house. Typically made out of metal and covered by exterior bricks, some span as many as 18 feet across. Long lintels like this are particularly vulnerable to failure over time because of the great deal of weight they have to distribute above them. Early signs of garage lintel failure include cracked bricks or cracked exterior walls above the garage opening. As the damage progresses, the lintel will start to visibly sag.

What causes a lintel to fail?

The most common reasons for lintel failure involve some kind of fault, such as corrosion of the steel. When coupled with the weight they have to support, it can lead to sagging over time. The cracked bricks or exterior walls caused by the shifting of the lintel will only worsen the problem as it will be exposed more to the elements.

How is garage lintel repair performed?

Sometimes we are able to supplement the support of a lintel, other times it will need a full replacement. After installing support props we remove the bricks and excess mortar around the lintel and then remove and replace it. Once the new lintel is in place, the bricks and mortar are replaced and the new fixture is left to sit for 24 hours before the support props are removed.

Have a cracked or sagging garage door frame? Contact us to see if you need lintel repair.

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