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Different Types of Masonry in Building Construction

Many people are vaguely familiar with masonry walls but have no clue regarding specifics.  There are actually several types of masonry used in building construction. Walls made of masonry are the most strong and durable part of any building. The masonry provides strength and durability to the structure. It also helps to control indoor and outdoor temperature.

Masonry Differs Depending on Different Factors

Masonry is the word used for construction with mortar.  It is used as binding material with individual units of stones, bricks, concrete blocks and tiles.  Mortar is a mixture of binding material with sand. Some of the more common binding materials include cement, lime or soil.

The durability and strength of masonry wall construction depends on the type and quality of material used. Load bearing masonry walls are usually constructed with bricks, stones or concrete blocks. These walls transfer loads from the roof to the building’s foundation. These walls can be exterior or interior. The construction system with load bearing walls are more economical than one using framed structures.

Reinforced masonry walls can be either load or non-load bearing. The use of reinforcement in walls helps it to withstand tension forces and heavy compressive loads. Masonry walls that are not reinforced are susceptible to failure. They have little strength to withstand lateral forces during high winds or rain. Cracks also develop in un-reinforced masonry walls due to soil pressure or the settlement of foundations.

Hollow or Cavity masonry walls are used to prevent moisture reaching the interior of the building. They do this by providing a hollow space between the outside and inside face of a wall. These walls also help to control temperatures inside a building from the outside as the hollow space restricts heat to pass through the structure.

In the Chicago area your best option for any masonry or tuckpointing work is  Arrow Masonry and Exteriors, Inc. Arrow Masonry has been providing quality services to commercial and residential communities for over 50 years. Call Arrow today at 847-776-6400 or visit their website to view all the services that can provide for you.

How to Know When Your Chimney Needs Rebuilding

As a general rule, a chimney is the first part of the masonry on a building that will show signs of age and deterioration. This is due in large part that a chimney is under almost constant attack from all the elements. Because chimneys are situated above the roofline, they have no roof or gutter system to clear away water. This makes them practically defenseless to heavy bouts of precipitation and wind.

Serious damage can result from the smallest crack or imperfection to your chimney.  If there is any penetration of water through a cap that fails, the results can be severe. The top section of a chimney can disintegrate so badly that the only course of action is complete repair of the masonry. When you get to the point where most of brick of a chimney shows signs of cracking or flaking it is time to rebuild the structure.

Keep Tabs on Your Capstone

This is why it is very important to keep track of the capstone on your chimney. The capstone is the cement section of the chimney that tops or caps off the brickwork. Due to its location at the very top of the structure it is exposed to the very roughest weather conditions. If you notice just one or two cracks here, you can relax – this is considered normal and can repaired without replacement. On the other hand, if you see a cap that is broken in sections you more than likely need to have another cap installed. This work is intricate and requires the experience of professionals.

In the Chicago area the number one place to call for chimney restoration is  Arrow Masonry and Exteriors, Inc. Arrow Masonry has been in business for over 50 years and has the experience necessary to complete any chimney work.  They service both commercial and residential communities for all types of masonry projects. Call Arrow today at 847-776-6400 or visit their website to view all the services they can provide for you.

Brick Repair and Masonry Restoration

Shifting and settling soils can wreak havoc on the foundation of a home. With the volatile weather we experience in northern Illinois, this is something for homeowners to monitor. Foundation repairs are a fact of life for many people.  It is important to remember a poorly performed brick and mortar repair may leave a permanent mark on your property. If this kind of work is necessary, it is highly recommended you call a professional.

Brick and Masonry Work Usually Requires a Professional

Keep in mind the mortar on your home will eventually erode and slowly age over time.  Ideally, the material used for a proper repair should age at roughly the same rate.  Caulking and other latex based products usually deteriorate at a much quicker pace. This is an important consideration when looking for a contractor to perform masonry or brick repair work.

Masonry repair can be a difficult and delicate procedure, so it should be completed by an experienced and reputable professional.  High quality, matching mortar repair for your home is a job beyond the scope of most homeowners.  If you have mortar cracks, cracked brick or failing arch entryways, contact a mortar repair expert to review the needed repair work. You want to get an estimate before any work is performed since costs can vary greatly from one company to another.

New projects like a custom barbeque, outdoor fireplace, flower bed borders or a new brick mailbox can greatly improve the look of your home. These repairs and upgrades can also give you more peace of mind. Home improvements like these also increase the value of your home and make it much more sellable if you are thinking of putting your residence on the market.

In the Chicago area your best option for brick repair and masonry restoration is  Arrow Masonry and Exteriors, Inc. Arrow Masonry has been providing quality tuckpointing and masonry restoration services to commercial and residential communities for more than 50 years. Call Arrow today at 847-776-6400 or visit their website to get an estimate and view all the services that can provide for you.