Protecting the Future, Preserving the Past

The fundamentals of masonry restoration

 You may have heard the term “masonry restoration” before. But what is masonry restoration? And why is it so important?

Making old things new

Masonry restoration is something of a catchall term. Many people use it interchangeably with tuckpointing or repointing, which is the process of replacing old and worn-out joints with newer mortar. But much more can go into masonry restoration than that.

A good masonry restoration makes an old building look new. It replaces old, crumbling, spalling masonry with new, fresh joints and brightens up the surfaces to look like they did when they were originally made—or keep the patina of age, depending on the customer’s wishes.

Old, damaged buildings can be structurally unsound and even dangerous if their masonry is falling apart. A good masonry restoration makes an old building safe and sturdy again, even when it’s starting to show its age.

The fundamentals

Restoration encompasses both skills and knowledge. Masonry changes over time and by location, and depending on the age of the building and the area in which it is built, the masonry might need an entirely different mortar compound. There’s also a fair bit of difference between structural masonry and the brick or stone exterior skins that make up many buildings today.

Brick can sometimes be salvaged, but sometimes it can’t—it depends how much damage has occurred. Historic buildings need particular care and are sometimes governed by local regulations that impact what sort of work can be done. In the case of older buildings, the brick may not be in production any more. These sorts of restorations have to be approached with care, on a case-by-case basis, as each one is different.

In the case of modern buildings, the restoration is often much more straightforward. Repointing and cleaning often takes care of it without too much hassle, and if well taken care of, a building shouldn’t need much in the way of restoration moving forward.

Being able to match materials, textures, appearances, and more is an important part of quality masonry restoration. The skills to keep a building structurally sound and safe are also fundamentals of masonry restoration.

If your building is looking a little worse for wear and could use some masonry help, don’t hesitate to reach out to JK Industries. We’ll help you get it looking fresh and new again.