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I understand that expanding a brick window is an expensive operation, and I was wondering what went into such an operation. We have a window in the front of our house that we want to expand downwards, which involves cutting into the brick facing of our 1960s house. The quote for just the masonry work by window companies is in the range of $2500, and that seems a bit steep to me, being that we aren't widening (requiring adjustments to the roof supports) or expanding upwards. Is this is something viable as a DIY project? Or are there special considerations that make this the realm of a specialist?

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  • Your question is entirely opinion-based. It's a matter of your prerogative, skill set, budget, and motivation. I would absolutely consider it a DIY project. You may not. For that reason it's off-topic.
    – isherwood
    Jan 14, 2021 at 19:28
  • Additionally, pricing is going to vary widely based on your location in the country and local supply/demand for work, so nobody can tell you if that's a reasonable quote for where ever it is that you live. The best you can do there is get multiple quotes (sounds like you have) and assume that's the going rate in your neck of the woods. Hence pricing info is also off-topic.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 15, 2021 at 12:19

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Removing bricks is easy. It's putting them back up, properly, that takes some skill & experience to do right. It's been my experience that anytime you have someone do brickwork for you it gets expensive.

But in your case, if it were me, I would use a circular saw with a concrete cutting blade on it and just cut the bricks below the window vertically along the edge of the new opening, like this:

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Then just chisel out/break the bricks off along mortar joint and remove as many rows pf bricks as needed.

Frame in for the new window with appropriate attention to weather proofing. It looks like that might be a load bearing wall, so there's probably a header above that window that needs to be handled properly. This post was mainly addressing the brick removal question. There are a fair number of videos out there that walk you through the details of replacing a window.

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    I'd remove the old window and carefully salvage the sill course of bricks. You'll want to reuse those in the lower position.
    – isherwood
    Jan 14, 2021 at 19:27
  • If the vertical studs adjacent to the window do not continue below the newly opened area... you will have some framing alterations to contend with. Jan 14, 2021 at 21:30
  • These, like many bricks, may be the 3-hole type. If so then vertically cutting as described will reveal the middle hole in every other row. To hide that hole will require careful breaking out of the brick that is too long so that it can be cut in the middle and re-inserted with the hole-end turned away from the window opening.
    – Greg Hill
    Jan 14, 2021 at 21:48
  • Good point, though my house is built with solid core (no hollow spaces) bricks. So I didn't have that issue.
    – SteveSh
    Jan 15, 2021 at 0:31

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