Bricks have been a popular construction material for many years. Modern bricks are designed to be durable and strong, but even the best brick can sustain some damage over time.
It's important that you are able to identify some of the more common types of masonry damage that could affect your brickwork so that you can invest in professional repairs as quickly as possible.
Discovering that your bricks are breaking free from the wall against which they were installed can be devastating. This process is known as spalling.
Spalling occurs when moisture penetrates the surface of a brick structure. As the moisture expands and contracts in response to temperature fluctuations, the bricks themselves begin to come loose.
If you do see evidence of spalling in your home, you will need a masonry contractor to find the source of the moisture and lay new brick to restore the aesthetic of your brick wall.
2. Bond Failure
The materials that are used to manufacture bricks must remain firmly bonded in order for the brick to retain its strength. Mistakes made during manufacturing or contamination of the brick mixture during manufacturing can lead to bond failure.
Bricks that are affected by bond failure will often appear to be crumbling and losing their shape.
The only way to restore the structural integrity of a brick wall that is suffering from bond failure is to have a masonry contractor remove all of the affected bricks and install fresh ones in their place.
It's not uncommon for cracks to begin to form in brick walls over time.
There is a wide range of factors that can contribute to the formation of these cracks. Some cracks are caused by moisture infiltration. Others are caused by a building shifting and settling. Even the improper preparation of the mortar mixture used to bind bricks together can eventually lead to cracking.
A masonry contractor will need to be called in to assess the severity of any cracks in your brick wall. Minor cracks can usually be patched and repaired, but large cracks could require the replacement of affected bricks and mortar through a process known as tuckpointing.
Being able to spot brick damage will help you better maintain your brick walls in the future. Be vigilant in watching for signs of cracking, bond failure, and spalling that could spread across the entire surface of your brick wall.
For more information, contact a local masonry contractor.