Blog

Wash Crown

The Wash Crown is the top cement portion that seals off the upper opening of the chimney. The Wash Crown is a very vital part of the chimney where damage often occurs, and spreads down the rest of the chimney continuing to cause more damage. The majority of masons use a half-inch of masonry mortar to install their crowns. Standard mortar is weak and has no flexibility. During the winter, snow s
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Spalled Bricks

Spalling occurs when bricks absorb too much moisture in the winter months, where the water within the bricks freezes and expands, causing the face of the bricks to burst. Spalling is addressed by cutting out and replacing or refacing spalled bricks. Here at Sposato Masonry we have specialized equipment to cut out, remove and replace these bricks when possible. The removal and replacement of bri
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Caulking of Mortar Joints

Applying caulking or silicon over damaged mortar joints, rather than proper masonry Tuck-pointing, is not only an improper repair method, but it also creates further deterioration by trapping moisture in the masonry behind the mortar. The trapped moisture will cause damage during the winter when it freezes and expands, while also deteriorating the mortar joints and bricks around it. Any caulking o
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EFFLORESCENCE

Efflorescence is the result of masonry material (brick or mortar) absorbing too much water. The water reacts with lime and other elements that make up the masonry material, which in turn causes salt particles to raise to the surface of the masonry. When the exterior moisture evaporates from the masonry, this leaves behind a chalky, unsightly white film. Efflorescence in itself is only a cosmetic i
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Vertical Cracks (Stitching)

The bricks are the actual strength in a chimney. The mortar within the bricks acts more like a glue to hold the bricks together. Mortar in itself varies in strength anywhere between 750psi to 2500 psi. The strength of average concrete bricks however, varies between 4,000psi to 6,000psi, and clay bricks vary from 8,000psi to 10,000 psi.  When Vertical Cracking is found through bricks, it me
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SEALING

Penetrating sealers are the most common sealers used on bricks. These sealers clog all the pores within the masonry, which keeps it from absorbing too much water. They are translucent and do not create a film. When applied correctly, the sealer looks as if its not there at all. These particular sealers also allow moisture trapped within the masonry to evaporate rather than locking it in -which wou
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TUCK POINTING

Tuck-pointing: When mortar joints within the bricks start to deteriorate, crack or show voids, Tuck-pointing is preformed to reinforce the structure, seal the surface of the mortar and to keep rainwater out. Tuck-pointing consists of grinding out roughly 3/4" of damaged mortar. We specialize in mortar matching. During our Tuck-pointing process, we would use custom polymer modified mortar (
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