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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1answer
30 views

Holes in brick mortar?

There are a couple holes in my house's exterior brick mortar about 3/8" in diameter. Is there any reason not to fill them in? I only hesitate because my masonry knowledge is pretty much nil. ...
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25 views

Best way to fix tile

One of our old tiles suddenly feel off, the others seem ok. What's the best to fix back. I don't think I'll be able to get a new tile to match, and I don't think I can chisel the old mortar off ...
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Do I have a fieldstone foundation and if so, do I need to use Type O mortar?

I own a house that was built in 1890. The area of my foundation that I need to work on is an exterior section that is above ground. It is the part between my driveway and where the siding starts. I ...
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38 views

How long should I wait to drill holes into brand new mortar?

I just repaired loose bricks on my house in preparation to install new window shutters. When would it be ok to drill holes into the mortar and install the shutters? From my other research I'm going to ...
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3answers
75 views

Pouring concrete over rocks

Need a bit of guidance here, I have tough yard and my contractors are going to pour concrete over some large boulders and filled in the remaining area with parts of other boulders (6in to 1 foot). ...
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3answers
94 views

what is the correct procedure to patch up cinder block hole with plumbing?

(followup question to Why is this Ptrap installed in this location?) Here is the hole that I want to patch up: As you can see, it is a cinder block wall with concrete foundation with a new PVC drain ...
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1answer
30 views

How to maintain an old brick wall

we have a small section of exposed brick from an old chimney in the kitchen. The chimney is now used as an exhaust for the furnaces in the basement (and maybe for the kitchen exhaust in a different ...
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0answers
17 views

Is there anyway to prevent rust stains or staining of color on a house that has been German schmeared? (Thinset mortar applied to brick)

We applied thinset white mortar on the brick of our house using the German schmear technique. After a very very hard rain, we had some rust stains show up down the brick in areas around older gutter ...
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61 views

Retile Shower Floor Only?

I want to replace my mosaic tile shower floor. The shower pan is hot mopped. The wall tiles are set on a 3/4 inch mortar bed. I imagine replacing the floor tile means replacing the hot mop, which ...
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1answer
73 views

Is this joint between the foundation and first row of mortar typical

Just wondering if this is a normal appearance for the area where the foundation and first row of mortar/brick meet. There are no signs of any structural cracks or anything like that in the area. Is ...
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1answer
78 views

What should I use to patch this gap between brick siding and top of foundation

I have a small gap between the top of our foundation and the start of the brick siding in one isolated area and was wondering what the best material would be to fill this area.
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1answer
32 views

Shower base and perimeter adhesive & grout

Just put in the shower floor tile with epoxy adhesive & have the perimeter tiles left to do (the very bottom tile against the shower floor tiles) What Adhesive can I use for this? Is it ok to use ...
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1answer
65 views

Filling gaps between bricks in pool deck

I am repairing the deck around my pool. Some bricks were loose, so I removed them, ground off old mortar and glued them back. Now I need to fill the gaps between the bricks with mortar, similar to how ...
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26 views

Temporary Re pointing of Brick work

I have some damp in a bedroom which is because the wall outside needs re-pointing. I will do this in the summer but what can I do as a temporary fix
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120 views

What adhesive to use when tiling the fireplace hearth?

I am tiling the wood burning fireplace hearth and it gets really hot especially in the top-middle. I am wondering what kind of adhesive should I use for this purpose? I don’t want it fail due to high ...
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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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2answers
67 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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1answer
146 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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2answers
85 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
86 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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2answers
227 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
173 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
85 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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0answers
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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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1answer
68 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
534 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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1answer
117 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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2answers
99 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
109 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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1answer
19 views

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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3answers
155 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
115 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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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
49 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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1answer
140 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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1answer
981 views

Can I use more sand topping mortar to level the slope of a shower pan?

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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0answers
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
236 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
58 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
2k 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
340 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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1k 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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2answers
86 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
59 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
2k 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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1answer
70 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
4k views

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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936 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....