Questions tagged [mortar]

Mortar is used between bricks, cinder blocks, or stone to bind them and fill any gaps. It is made from sand, a binding agent (cement or lime), and water.

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13 views

placing a tile on an old plank floor

The subfloor in my home is 4" planks. The previous owner removed the hardwood, painted the flooring and left it that way (I have no idea why you would do that). Regardless I want to put down tile. ...
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1answer
25 views

Repairing above-ground gaps and holes in foundation

I am moving into a house (built 1911) that had a few things turn up on the inspection. One corner of the basement has an indoor cistern, and there are some gaps and a hole in the cinder blocks just ...
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72 views

What type of mortar should be used for small mortar repair on a 100 year old house?

I've read that one should use a special type of mortar with old brick houses because they expand more - portland mortar vs soft lime. The recommendation from the NY Landmarks Commission states: ...
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69 views

Laying Stone on a unlevel concrete surface

first and foremost thanks for the help :) I am in the process of redoing my porch and I have hit a road bump along the way. I am planning on laying real thick stone (as seen here) on the porch floor. ...
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1answer
74 views

Is this crack between bricks a concern?

I just noticed this crack that has formed along an exterior window. Does this seem like something that needs repair, or just some caulking? I noticed that for some reason the bricks were not ...
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65 views

Is this Landscaping Caulk on Outdoor Retaining wall Steps

I have steps leading up through my retaining wall and a few of the stones that cap the steps have come loose. Looking at the place where the steps were, there appears to be some kind of caulk-like ...
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1answer
66 views

Are phosphate floor screws suitable for subfloor which will be covered in thinset and cement board?

I am installing hardiebacker concrete board with thinset to a plywood subfloor. I am putting down the new subfloor and want to be sure the screws that I use to secure the plywood to the joists will ...
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2answers
57 views

What is the best proportion mix cement, sand and aggregate to use in mosaics?

I am pouring mosaic concrete stepping stones to be placed in a city sidewalk. The mosaic will go face down into a form and the concrete poured from the back. I have been having problems with my test ...
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34 views

Mortar recommendation for repointing this older stone chimney

Which type of mortar or product would you think most appropriate for doing some repointing on this chimney? I've been reading about using mortar that is too hard for the stones. I'm worried I will ...
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28 views

Painted house that the previously applied mortar was done sloppy

We are looking to repaint the house(all block) but whoever applied the original mortar did a streaky job. Is there anything I can add to the paint to correct the steaks in it without having to ...
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1answer
62 views

Which cement or mortar will give best result when creating low water diversion barriers?

I want to build up a short dam of maybe half an inch in height, to control where water is flowing. The water flows as a small, steady trickle. Right now it fans across a large-ish area. I'd like to ...
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1answer
215 views

What critter (insect?) removes sand from between paving bricks?

Something is excavating sand/mortar from between paving bricks, as seen here. I thought it was ants, but I've placed ant traps and bait and there seems to be no effect. Also, when the mounds are ...
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105 views

How to stop bricks pushing out while drilling?

I need to add an extractor fan to our utility room so I started drilling a hole using a core drill bit from the inside to outside. Its a standard UK brick cavity wall, so brick > insulation > brick. I ...
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28 views

How to resurface concrete patio

Our yard had a small mounded flower garden that had gone to weeds. We discovered that there was actually an old patio sitting underneath it. Someone had just dumped a lot of gravel and soil on top ...
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2answers
65 views

Convert recessed brick mortar to concave mortar design to decrease water intrusion due to high winds

High winds cause my 20 year old brick home to leak water through the reduced cement volume in the head joints. Water runs through head joints, down inside of brick wall, then leaks under the sill ...
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1answer
81 views

Whats the best way to secure a loose flooring joist where mortar has crumbled over the decades?

My kitchen floor sits on joints that are mostly OK. One wobbles though as I walk over it near a wall. It moves 0.5cm (0.25"). I lifted a floor board and had a look. You can see the crumbled mortar ...
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Repointing in sections

I want to repoint my walls, but not all of the wall needs repointing, only sections. How should I break up the task? How should I join sections with fresh mortar to sections with existing mortar.
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Bluestone pavers for front stoop?

In the fall I made a simple front stoop. It is 24 inches by 48 inches. That size feels just right. It has some brick-shaped things from Home Depot as the under layer, and then the top layer is ...
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20 views

Sealant around flue liner

As you can see some mortar has chipped away/fallen off from where the flue liner for our boiler meets the basement wall. Need to re-patch this - is it a straightforward sand and cement mix to be used ...
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3answers
125 views

Joints between paving stones - A breeding ground for weeds. Sustainable control?

I'm looking for a solution to control weed growth on a patio out of paving stone. The weeds are growing the the joints between the stones as can be seen in the picture. Two methods have been proposed:...
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2answers
68 views

What sealant should I buy to secure cable in brick?

I have an ethernet cable that goes into house from the outside wall. What sealant should I look for that will not crack the cable? I need to keep wind and rain out of the house from the hole. It ...
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19 views

shower drain not snug in mortar

Poured shower bed mortar around drain and sloped it properly. Drain is type that screws into base. The face of the drain is square. Now that the mortar is dry and I am ready to tile the shower floor I ...
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1answer
39 views

Joint thickness for glass block spacers

I am getting these glass block spacers for 4" blocks but the website I got it from says nothing about the thickness of the joint it provides. I would like to build my framing before it arrives (...
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87 views

How can I prevent bluestone mortar from degrading so quickly?

We live in Milwaukee, WI. Our front porch has a combination of bluestone pavers as well as brick on the stoops with mortar joints. We have had repeated problems with presumably water/expansion in ...
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40 views

Quickrete bonding agent and quick-mix mortar

I'm doing a repair of a hole in a basement floor. I was supposed to paint the edges of the hole with Quickrete, and let that dry before putting on the mortar. But the area is too wet for the ...
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1answer
417 views

Shower Pan leveling - can I use more sand topping mortar to level the slope

I'm building a shower pan the traditional way using a pre-slope, then waterproof membrane, then a mortar bed using sand topping mix. I laid my mortar bed and curb and it has dried but I've noticed ...
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27 views

Is a liner required when bedding a tub over plywood?

Is a liner material like roofing paper required when bedding a tub in mortar over plywood? I am concerned the plywood will suck all the moisture out of the mortar too fast and lead to cracking?
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1answer
154 views

Medium-term repair for spalled foundation with exposed mudsill

I have an old house (built in 1946) near the ocean. The foundation in the back has spalled off, exposing the mudsill in some places. The worst spalling is 4" deep - you can see the mudsill and a few ...
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1answer
47 views

How to correct this pointing?

This is a picture of the wall of my house: I need to fix the pointing; I think it's causing water to enter around a window at one point, and it's generally a disaster. The house is in the UK, built ...
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2answers
1k views

Best way to parge exterior stone foundation wall

I have a 1894 house with a stone/rock wall (limestone I think). The foundation is in decent shape for the most part but I would like to parge the exterior visible portion to give it a more modern look ...
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1answer
28 views

brick jointer with springy blades

I saw a video where the mortar on brick steps was being repaired. The jointer being used had flexible, springy blade-tips, not rigid ones. I'm looking for the name of that tool. What is that style ...
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1answer
158 views

What would be the best tuck pointing temporary alternative?

I have a brick home and I am seeing a lot of spots that are missing mortar. It was not obvious at first, but we have had a bit of an ant problem and I tried to figure out where they are coming in ...
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744 views

Polymeric sand loosens when slightly wet, is that normal, and what's the best way to cover it?

I laid polymeric sand on a patio (made of paver blocks), and it looked great. I followed the instructions, and it didn't rain within about a week of my laying it. It ended up perfect, and it's hard ...
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78 views

How to keep brick face clean when applying fresh mortar?

In the few times I have replaced bricks in my home, I always feel the end result is a little messy. Specifically, despite my best efforts, the brick face ends up a little "smeared" with mortar. What ...
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1answer
41 views

How to replace thick set tile with wall?

I am removing my thickset tiles in the kitchen of my 1950s home. I want to replace dated tiles with a smooth wall. Do I need to remove all the way through to the wire mesh or can I chisel off 1/2 of ...
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4answers
1k views

Do I need to seal the base of a shower and the surrounding tile?

The "seal" between my shower base (fiberglass) and the surrounding tile started to crack (it is around 5 years old). It is not regular caulking, it's more like mortar/cement. It cracked a little bit ...
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67 views

Can I use mortar to level out a patio made of cinder blocks?

We recently ripped out our deck because it was rotted and laid a level of cinder blocks 10ft x 32in for a small patio, basically just a step for coming out the back door. I was just wondering if I ...
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3answers
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Why did concrete screws feel loose when installed in a brick wall?

I am trying to secure a floating mantle shelf over a brick fireplace wall. I used 2 3/4" 3/16 tapcon screws to secure the strip of wood to a brick wall but the wood strip did not hold securely The ...
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692 views

How best to deal with this crumbling interior brickwork?

While I was repainting the interior, some plaster started coming off the old brickwork in my new house. I now have a 50cm by 50cm hole. Underneath, the mortar is crumbling and some bricks are cracked....
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3answers
114 views

Drop-down shower floor prep

I am remodeling a first floor bathroom and the concrete for my shower drops down 3 inches from floor level. What kind of prep do I need before tiling the shower? A contractor said all I need was sand ...
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1answer
63 views

Tile backsplash mortar base coat?

I am replacing my tile back splash. When I removed the old tiles, about half of the surfaces were rocklath, while the other half was sheetrock. The sheetrock fell apart and had to be removed while for ...
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1answer
74 views

Repairing tile laid on harwood floor - how to make best of bad situation?

The previous owner of my house laid slate tile over hardwood in the entryway. A 9 square foot area has become loose and I need to re-set the tiles. Pulling everything out is not an option; I'm ...
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1answer
389 views

Is Kerabond T with additive okay for under Ditra Heat?

I'm looking to install porcelain tile over Ditra heat mat in our kitchen. From what I read you need to use a modified thinset for under the ditra mat(over plywood subfloor), and unmodified for over ...
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1answer
2k views

What is proper ratio of sand to portland cement to use for repairing a 30 yr old stone wall

I have a 30 year old stone 12" high stone wall that needs to be patched up. There are small voids where stone has fallen out. My question is what is the ratio of portland cement to sand used to ...
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2answers
218 views

How can I remove cured tile mortar from subfloor?

I was setting tile last night and had to stop before the room was done. I was being diligent to make sure the edges that were adjacent to the unfinished areas were smooth but in my exhaustion I missed ...
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1answer
302 views

NCV meter beeping over large area of a wall

I use non contact voltage tester function of Uni-t ut210e for detecting main wires under/in walls. It worked pretty well until yesterday. The wall is made of bricks/mortar and some metal profiles (as ...
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1answer
508 views

Reduce Tiling Dry/Wait Times

I am tiling my kitchen floor and unfortunately it is the major walkway in and out of the house. Is there anything that I can do to reduce the drying and waiting times for the thinset (both for taping ...
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2answers
360 views

Does this wall tile's mortar contain asbestos?

I have some missing tiles behind my sink cabinet and had to clean up some pile of crumbled material from this mortar. This is an old house but the bathroom tiles could have been remodeled since the ...
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3k views

Do backer board seams on tiled floor need to be taped?

First time tiling a floor, I have hardibacker down throughout. Do I need to tape and mortar the seams?
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368 views

Prep drywall before backsplash

I'm looking to put up some new backsplash. I took off the old tile as carefully as possible, but some drywall was damaged. I put one hole in the wall which I will patch, but the rest, as you can see ...