For questions generally relating to the artificial stone-like building material typically called "brick", and also related materials like "cinder block" and natural stone blocks.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

8
votes
1answer
509 views

Mortar (or something) falling out of basement brick wall

In my basement, there is a powdery, bright white substance between some of the bricks. It looks like it was something applied on top of the mortar joint. I scraped a couple places where it was falling ...
0
votes
2answers
215 views

How should I shim a foundation vent?

I bought some new foundation vents that attach with tension screws instead of mortar. I chiseled out my old vent and with the new vent in place, there is a large gap. How do you recommend I fill the ...
3
votes
1answer
854 views

How can I patch a hole in this brick wall?

I just pulled out the washing machine the old owners "kindly" left us to find a hole where the wall meets the floor. It's approximately 80mm x 50mm and goes down approx 100mm - below ground level - ...
1
vote
1answer
202 views

can I cut in / blend old brick extension

Our house was extended some time before we moved in and it has left a straight line of mortar running down the front and back of the building went instead of cutting out the half bricks that wrap ...
2
votes
2answers
111 views

How do I remove concrete that has splattered on my brick pavers?

We installed a brick patio, and splatter from wet-cutting the bricks ended up on the installed bricks. How do I clean it?
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How long to wait before cleaning new tuckpointed brick mortar with muriatic acid?

I am about to retuckpoint my exposed brick wall with a custom mortar mix (1x hydraulic lime, 2.5x sand). Once I am done, I plan to clean the residue and other dirt from the bricks using muriatic ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

How to cut opening in double brick wall

The external wall of my house is a double-thickness solid brick wall (i.e. about 210mm thick consisting of 100mm brick, 10mm mortar down the middle, then another 100mm brick). I need to cut a new ...
6
votes
2answers
13k views

How can I cut through brick to add a window?

I'm redoing a bathroom and would like to add a window (36x12) in the shower. This involves cutting through brick. A contractor I spoke with said he could cut it with a angle grinder (diamond blade?), ...
1
vote
0answers
162 views

Can I repair the cracks between the bricks in my fireplace?

The bricks surrounding my fireplace have cracks between them. It's as if the thermal expansion/contraction has eroded the mortor between the bricks. I have had some serious fires in there and haven't ...
2
votes
1answer
464 views

How do I take down an internal wall tied into a load bearing wall?

I'm looking for some advice on whether something I want to do is sensible and any potential risks. Background: Between my dining room and utility room at some time there must have been a doorway. ...
1
vote
1answer
96 views

New Window in Structural Brick House

I have an old house (built in the 1940s) that is structural brick. I want to add a small window on the wall to the upstairs to let in a bit more light. Is it possible to add a window to a structural ...
7
votes
2answers
510 views

What are these vents in the foundation mortar for?

Throughout the interior side of my 1925 brick foundation are little metal vents embedded in the mortar at irregular intervals. Neither our home inspector nor our real estate agent knew exactly what ...
1
vote
3answers
406 views

Can I use demo'ed bricks to make an outdoor firepit?

I have four brick posts that are about four feet high and square (1.5 bricks per side all the way up). They are going. A tree hit two of them and I was probably going to take them out anyway. So I ...
6
votes
2answers
7k views

Should I replace old wooden siding with brick?

I'll say first, that this isn't a question about DIY, but more about the idea and whether we should go through with it. We bought our first house last year, and in the Spring this year, we are ...
4
votes
2answers
441 views

Should we cover weep holes with wire mesh?

We just bought our first home and we had advice some friends that we should cover the weep holes with wire mesh, to prevent bugs and other things from going inside. Is that a good idea? Please advise. ...
2
votes
1answer
181 views

Will cement used as mortar need to be replaced?

I had some cracked/spalling bricks on my home as a result of water getting in and freezing during the winter. I went ahead and replaced five bricks (three on top and two below) and accidentally used ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the best way to lay brick pavers on concrete porch

I have a concrete porch which I would is covered and does not get wet during rain/snow. It does not have any drain issues. We don't like the way it looks so we would like to beautify it by laying ...
3
votes
1answer
7k views

What is the best mix for cement render?

I have some bricked exterior areas that had some cement render on them, and then paint. The render has fallen off the bricks in patches. I think the problem is that large chunks of the brick work was ...
3
votes
1answer
8k views

How should a new brick wall tie into an existing wall?

When building a new brick outside, block inside extension, where it joins an existing brick wall. How should the new wall be tied into the old. ie should the outside brick AND the inside block be tied ...
4
votes
2answers
292 views

Are there any advantages to using higher priced sealers?

I want to use a water based sealer on my pavers to bring out the color and also for some resistance against dirt and fading. I went to the store and saw sealers varying in price from about $11 per ...
0
votes
1answer
109 views

What can I put on these bricks that are sticking up to get them flush again?

The house I just moved into has bricks laid in a pattern of stright columns the bricks are sitting tight but 1 inch is sticking up. Everyone stubs their toe on them. The area is about 7 feet long and ...
3
votes
1answer
578 views

How do I determine the correct rise of a step for a concrete footing on a slope?

Going to be building a retaining wall in the front yard on a slope. I'm going to be using King size residential bricks to make a 2 wythe wall. Because of the slope I'll need to have 3-4 steps in the ...
3
votes
1answer
245 views

What is the sheathing underneath my brick exterior walls?

I am trying to figure out what is inside of my exterior plaster wall that the brick is attached to. The house was built in 1946, has no insulation in the walls, and (oddly enough to me), has drywall ...
1
vote
1answer
348 views

How can I block off a doorway with studwork on a brick wall?

I'm blocking up a doorway in a brick wall. I've decided to block it up using a stud wall as that should be a bit easier than bricking it up. I know that the bricks are 11cm depth plus approx 2cm ...
1
vote
1answer
541 views

Can oscillating multi-tools be used for fitting pattress boxes

I have a bunch of pattress boxes to fit for light switches and plug sockets and was wondering if my oscillating multi-tool could be of any use. I have a Bosch PMF 180 E Multi. Can this be used to cut ...
0
votes
1answer
611 views

Can I install a (probably ductless) range hood against brick?

I'm thinking about making an offer on a 1930's house that needs a few improvements. The gas stove/range isn't situated against an exterior wall. Rather, it's placed against the back side of the brick ...
2
votes
1answer
375 views

What type of mortar should I use?

I'm going to replace these cracked bricks on the front of my home(see pic). What type of mortar should I use? Type S, N, or M? Is there a way to determine the type of mortar that was used when the ...
1
vote
2answers
5k views

How can I finish and seal an interior exposed brick wall?

I have exposed a 100+ yr old brick wall inside, tuckpointed, cleaned with cup brushes on a grinder, and Sureklean 600. I don't have a picture right now but it looks beautiful. Two questions: I ...
6
votes
2answers
236 views

Is the back section of this house salvageable or should it be knocked down?

My grandfather's house is getting to be in bad shape after years of neglect and more so the back section of the house is falling apart. Now the back section of the house, if I remember correctly, was ...
0
votes
3answers
4k views

How do I cut a brick fireplace hearth to allow for a laminate flooring expansion gap?

I am attempting to cut a small piece out of the brick fireplace (already in place) to allow for the expansion of the floating laminate flooring that I am installing. I don’t want to just leave the ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Can I change the color of the mortar in my brick wall?

We recently built our home and the mortar color between the bricks is dark gray, we did not pay attention to it and because of that the brick face is looking duller due to the standard gray mortar. ...
5
votes
1answer
864 views

How can I resheathe behind brick fascia without removing the brick?

The original builders of my house used a material called "Aluma Sheath", also known as Dennyboard, to sheathe my house. Dennyboard is a radiant coating on two sides of a 1/8 sheet of a fiberous ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

What's behind the hard plaster walls?

Most of the walls in the old part of my house are plaster. Hard, nasty, amazingly solid plaster. While this is nice in some areas, there's others that it's rather annoying -- such as on the stairs ...
2
votes
2answers
128 views

How to fix pitched floors in a brick building

I'm looking at a property the was built in the lat 1800s. It's a 3 level brick building with two other building of similar stature on each side. I too a quick look at the second floor, and it pitches ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

How much weight can single-track shelving mounted on brick wall hold?

I'm looking at attaching shelves to a brick wall using single-track metal strips with adjustable brackets. The metal strips will be 78 inches long and I'm planning on using pine shelves 47 x 12 x 3/4 ...
2
votes
3answers
12k views

How should I apply brick to an interior wall?

I don't want to use veneer, I want to use real brick. Is it as easy as using tie-ins to the studs and setting the brick as one would normally? The existing wall is drywall, So I was thinking of ...
7
votes
2answers
316 views

Are these brick walls properly constructed?

I'm looking into buying an apartment and I'm visiting some locations. During one of my visits I saw this exterior wall of a future apartment building: I'm not an expert but it does not look good ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

How to fill gap between brick and drywall?

Where my ceiling drywall meets a brick wall there is a gap. This is smaller at the brick itself (maybe 3/16") and then larger where the mortar is struck. This seems too large to fill with ...
6
votes
6answers
7k views

How can I add/alter wiring inside single-brick walls?

Our house is full-brick. Double-brick on the exterior walls and single-brick for every internal wall. It was built in 1979 (I guess they liked to do things properly then). We've only ever had the ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

What type of paint should be used to paint a brick fireplace?

The brick color is hideous. Additionally there are some missing bricks that will be replaced first and would be hard to match. Is there a particular type of paint that should be used on brick?
7
votes
2answers
876 views

Should I fill eroded mortar in exterior brick?

There's a few bricks around my house about 40cm up from ground level where the vertical mortar between the bricks has completely fallen out / eroded away. In a few spots, there's insects going into ...
4
votes
1answer
157 views

How do I match this brick?

I am trying to find a good match for some 1930 bricks (North West England). Any ideals on makes and model of bricks that will match well.
2
votes
1answer
160 views

How much should brick “give” when pushing against it?

My wife and I are having a home built by a local contractor. The house is wood framed construction with a brick exterior. The home is nearly complete -- just interior trim and paint work remains. ...
2
votes
2answers
750 views

How can I enlarge a hole in a brick wall without drilling?

I currently have a small hole in my brick wall that is bringing a cable for my satellite dish into my house. I now want to install outdoor speakers in my backyard and I would like to feed the speaker ...
2
votes
1answer
939 views

What type of wood should I use as an outdoor table top for a BBQ?

I am going to build a brick BBQ similar to something like the below BBQ picture. The position will be against the house and will get wet from rain. I only plan to cover the BBQ. Would I be ok to ...
0
votes
2answers
500 views

How to build a brick wall on the front of a CMU retaining wall?

My retaining wall is made of two parallel "walls". One is made of 16x8x12 Concrete Masonry Units and the other will be 8x4x2 bricks. The CMUs are to have mass to hold the hill, while 8x4x2 are to be ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I remove construction glue from brick?

I just removed glued-on paneling from an interior brick wall. Now, I have the task of removing the glue from said brick. What is the best method of doing so? I know there's no getting around the use ...
3
votes
1answer
816 views

How can I build a porch enclosure?

I'm looking to take on this project myself, I want to enclose my porch. It's roughly 2x5 metres, and 8 feet high and is part of a semi detached where the porch continues on the other side to my ...
7
votes
3answers
459 views

Do Old Houses Have a Pre-determined Lifespan?

Taking into consideration the building supplies that were available in that time period for that particular geographic area (say, a major metropolitan city in the mid-western United States), do homes ...
2
votes
1answer
335 views

House Has Different Types of Siding - How to look seamless?

Alright, I am looking to purchase my first house. One of which looks somewhat like the one below. As you can see, it has a brick sided portion and a vinyl sided portion. Obviously this house has been ...