Does My Chimney Need Tuckpointing or Repointing?
The beautiful lakeshore surrounding the greater Buffalo, Niagara Falls, and Rochester, NY area make Western New York a wonderful place to live. However, our cold winter climate, especially with the recent historic blizzard, is not a very hospitable environment for a masonry chimney. Eventually, the brick and mortar begin to deteriorate and absorb moisture. Since mortar is a much softer material, its decay is often the first sign of masonry damage. When this occurs, tuckpointing or repointing can save your chimney from a costlier partial or complete rebuild.
Tuckpointing Vs. Repointing
The difference between tuckpointing and repointing is sometimes unclear, but they are vital techniques that can restore your chimney’s strength, structural stability, and appearance.
Tuckpointing is a technique where a skilled mason carefully scoops out the old, decaying mortar in the joints. Then, the new mortar compound is filled or tucked in the points that are color-matched to the unaffected sections, restoring your chimney’s strength and stability with a seamless appearance.
Repointing is similar, except that the mortar is filled into the points but is not color-matched to the untouched areas of the chimney. Repointing is another excellent option when you want to restore the chimney, preventing further damage or structural collapse.
Repointing or tuckpointing is viable when the bricks are still in good condition, and the mortar decay is limited. When the chimney has severe masonry damage, including large sections of spalling or missing bricks, a partial or complete rebuilding may be the best option.
Signs Your Chimney Needs Tuckpointing or Repointing
What is your chimney saying to you? Chimneys often signal they need help when you understand their language. Some of the signs your chimney needs tuckpointing or repointing to prevent further masonry repair include:
- There are cracks, holes, or gaps between the bricks.
- The mortar joints are decaying or missing.
- Your chimney has a “weathered” appearance.
- The exterior masonry has stains.
If you notice one or more of the above signs, contact Felgemacher Masonry & Chimney to schedule an inspection. Our team of certified professionals and highly skilled masons can help save your chimney.
Is Chimney Tuckpointing a DIY Project?
Chimney repairs are more challenging to perform than it sounds unless you are a professional mason with experience building, operating, and repairing chimney and venting systems. Our certified technicians have extensive training in inspecting, cleaning, and repairing chimneys, vents, and attached heating appliances per National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) industry standards.
What may start as a simple DIY project can cost you thousands of dollars in repairs when an improper or substandard repair fails, and moisture seeps inside the chimney and damages internal components. It can also increase the fire risk and expose occupants to harmful contaminants, such as carbon monoxide, mold, and mildew.
Buffalo Masonry Repair and Restoration Services
The Certified Chimney Professionals at Felgemacher Masonry & Chimney provide complete masonry repair and restoration services, including tuckpointing, repointing, rebuilding, and more. Call (716) 452-9156 or (585) 308-4914 to schedule a chimney inspection or estimate anywhere in the Greater Rochester-Buffalo-Niagara Falls, NY region. You can also contact us online.