What is Masonry and Why is it Important?

What is Masonry?

Masonry refers to the construction of structures using individual units. These units are usually laid in mortar and then bound together with mortar. However, the term masonry can also be used to describe the actual units. Brick, building stones like marble, granite, and travertine; cast stone; cinder block, and glass block are all common materials in masonry construction.

Masonry is a durable type of construction. The durability of masonry depends on the quality and design of the mortar, workmanship, and how the units are assembled.

What is Masonry?

Masonry has been used as a durable and reliable form of construction for hundreds of years. Masonry is still a popular choice for residential and commercial construction projects. Masonry can be used for a wide variety of purposes, including walls and floors, fireplaces, patios, and many other applications.

Masonry is not only beautiful, but it’s also very durable and strong. Masonry structures can last hundreds of years if they are properly constructed. Masonry is a great choice for both remodeling and new construction.

What are the Benefits of Masonry?

Masonry construction offers many advantages over other types. Masonry is durable, strong, fire-resistant, and soundproof. It’s also thermally efficient. You can also use Masonry walls to make beautiful, unique buildings.

Because of its many advantages, masonry is a popular choice in both residential and commercial construction. Contact a local masonry contractor if you are interested in masonry tools for your next construction project.

What is Masonry?

Masonry refers to the construction of buildings with individual pieces that are laid in mortar and then bound together by mortar. Bricks, stones, or concrete blocks are the most common types of units. Masonry, which dates back to ancient times, is one of the oldest types of construction.

These are the reasons why Masonry is so beloved:

01. Durability:

Masonry is a very durable material. Masonry can withstand extreme weather and won’t rot, warp or corrode. Hailstones, stones from destruction, and accidental car bumps in the lot won’t cause damage to Masonry.

Brick mortar repair

02. Fire Resistance:

Masonry is fireproof and won’t catch on fire. This protects your valuables and property, as well as your investment. These elements are non-combustible and fire-resistant.

03. Termite Resistance:

Masonry is highly resistant to termites, and other wood-destroying insect pests. It’s a great choice in areas where these pests are common. Masonry is non-organic, so it does not provide termites with the food they need to survive.

04. Structural Integrity

Masonry is one of the most widely used building materials around the globe. Masonry has been a popular choice over the centuries due to its strength and beauty. Masonry can be made of bricks, concrete blocks, or stones that are joined by mortar. Masonry is used to build walls, floors, and other structural elements.

Masonry is a versatile material that can be used for a wide range of purposes. Masonry is used extensively in commercial and residential construction. Masonry can be used for both interior and exterior walls. Masonry is also popular for outdoor fire pits and fireplace surrounds.

Masonry can be used for any roofing system. You can use it to build floors or support roofs.

06. Better Insulated (R values):

Because they are thicker, masonry walls are more insulated than wood frame walls. An 8” CMU wall has an R-value of R-1.5 per in. This compares to a stud wall, which is R-0.6 per in.

This means that masonry walls are 2 1/2 times more resistant to heat flow than stud walls. Additionally, masonry walls are thermally massed to help stabilize indoor temperature swings due to changes in outside temperature.

Metal walls are more resistant to extreme temperatures than mass-masonry walls. This allows for a constant temperature inside, which lowers heating and cooling costs.

07. Design flexibility

Masonry can be used in many ways to create various looks and designs. Masonry can be used for walls, floors, and patios. Masonry is a strong material that can last many years if it is properly maintained. Masonry units can be manufactured quickly and delivered in a matter of days.

8. Environmentally safe:

Masonry is a natural product that’s made from clay, sand, and water. It doesn’t produce harmful gases or leaches harmful chemicals into soil or groundwater.

Additional safety and health benefits are offered by pre-finished masonry units, such as Ultra Burnished or colored Fullface split units.

9. Transmission of sound is less

Masonry walls can absorb and transmit sound well. The mass of a brick wall in masonry is greater than a wall made from wood frames. Bricks and mortar within a masonry wall act as an acoustic barrier to reduce sound transmission.

Brick mortar repair

Unwanted sounds can be distracting at work or in your home. Masonry is a great way to reduce unwanted noise and sound.

10 Discount on your Initial and Life-Cycle Fees

Concrete masonry allows you to complete your projects in one piece. Masonry will never rust, change in color or become brittle due to the elements. This eliminates the need for maintenance and painting.

12. Low rates of insurance:

Masonry is non-combustible and therefore has a low insurance rate. Masonry construction offers greater protection against fires, break-ins, and other types of damage than any other type.

13. Better Resale Value:

Masonry buildings look better than steel or metal, and they last longer.

Depending on the availability of masonry units you can choose stone-rubble, brick (Burnt Clay Brick), block Masonry (Solid Block), lightweight concrete blocks (AAC), and gabion.

Last words

Masonry is a durable, versatile, and environmentally-friendly construction material. Masonry is easy to maintain and lasts a long time. Masonry buildings look better than steel and metal, and last longer. Masonry is the best choice if you’re looking for a material that can provide all these benefits.

Brick Fireplaces

How to paint brick fireplace

Remove Any Old Paint Or Debris From The Brick

Before you can apply new paint to your fireplace, you’ll need to remove any old paint or debris from the brick surface. You can do this by using a wire brush or a power washer. If you’re using a power washer, be careful not to damage the bricks.

Apply A Primer

Once the brick surface is clean, you’ll need to apply a primer. This will help the new paint to adhere to the bricks. Choose a primer that’s specific for use on masonry surfaces. Apply the primer with a roller or a brush, and then allow it to dry completely.

Choose Your Paint Color

Now it’s time to choose your paint color. You can use any color you like, but it’s important to choose a paint that’s specifically for use on masonry surfaces. Apply the paint with a roller or a brush, and then allow it to dry completely

Apply A Coat Of Primer To The Brick

Brick is a very porous material, and paint will not adhere to it well without a primer. Be sure to use a masonry primer, which can be purchased at any home improvement store. You will likely need two coats of primer. Once the primer is dry, you can begin painting.

Use A Brick Paint

You will also need to buy brick paint, which is different from regular paint. Brick paint is made specifically for porous surfaces like brick and stone. It is typically latex-based and can be tinted to any color you desire. Apply the paint with a roller or brush, using light even strokes. Two coats should be sufficient.

Let The Paint Dry Completely

After painting, it is important to let the paint dry completely before using the fireplace. This typically takes 24 hours but may take longer depending on the temperature and humidity levels in your home. Once the paint is dry, you can enjoy your newly painted brick fireplace!

Paint The Brick Using A Weather-resistant Paint

Brick is a very porous material, which means it can absorb a lot of moisture. This can be a problem, especially if you live in an area with high humidity levels.

Brick Fireplaces

To combat this, you’ll need to use weather-resistant paint on your brick fireplace. There are many different types of paints out there that claim to be weather-resistant, so make sure you do your research before making a purchase.

You’ll also want to make sure you’re using the right type of brush for the job. A natural bristle brush will work best for painting Brick Fireplaces. Nylon or polyester brushes are not recommended because they can leave behind streaks.

Once you’ve chosen the perfect paint and brush, it’s time to get started. Begin by painting the mortar joints first. You can use a small brush for this task. Once the mortar joints are painted, move on to painting the bricks themselves.

Start with one side of the fireplace and work your way around until all sides are complete. Be sure to paint in the crevices and cracks as well as on the flat surfaces of the bricks.

Allow the paint to dry completely before using the fireplace. This usually takes 24-48 hours. And that’s it! You’ve successfully painted your brick fireplace.

Seal The Paint With A Sealant For Extra Protection

You can choose to leave your newly painted fireplace as-is or cover it with a sealant for extra protection. A sealant will also help to ensure that the paint color does not fade over time from exposure to sunlight and other elements. If you do decide to add a sealant, be sure to use one that is specifically designed for fireplaces and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application. Allow the sealant to dry completely before using the fireplace again.

Brick Fireplaces

Enjoy Your New Painted Fireplace

Now that your fireplace is painted, take a step back and enjoy your handiwork! A fresh coat of paint can really brighten up a room, and you now have a beautiful new addition to your home. Whether you want to keep the Brick Fireplace’s natural look or go for something more daring, there are endless possibilities when it comes to painting Brick Fireplaces. With a little bit of creativity and effort, you can transform your fireplace into a true work of art. Thanks for reading, and happy painting!

Seal The Paint With A Sealant For Extra Protection

Brick fireplaces are a beautiful addition to any home. But over time, they can become dull and outdated. If you’re looking for a way to update your fireplace without spending a lot of money, painting it is a great option.

Before you begin painting your brick fireplace, it’s important to clean the surface and remove any soot or dirt. Once the fireplace is clean, you’ll need to apply a primer before painting. This will help the paint adhere to the bricks better.

When choosing a paint color for your fireplace, it’s important to consider the overall style of your home. You may want to choose a color that matches the trim or other accent colors in your home.

If you want to be extra sure that your paint job will last, then you can seal the brick fireplace with a sealant. You can find Brick sealants at most hardware stores. Just follow the instructions on the package and apply the sealant with a brush or roller. Let the sealant dry completely before painting over it.

Chimney repair – A complete Guide

Most people don’t give their chimney much thought – until there’s a problem. Then, it’s suddenly very important! If you’re having issues with your chimney, it’s important to get them fixed as soon as possible. Chimney repair can be a big job, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. This guide will walk you through everything you need to know about repairing your chimney.

Masonry Chimney 101

A chimney made of masonry can be made out of many materials, including concrete, bricks, mortar, concrete block and concrete block, cast iron and steel, and flue tile.

These materials can be very vulnerable to rainwater damage if they’re not properly installed or maintained.

External factors can cause serious damage to extremely porous chimneys.

Common Chimney Problems

A Chimney is an important part of your home, providing ventilation for your fireplace or stove. It’s also one of the most vulnerable parts of your home, exposed to the elements and subject to wear and tear. Over time, your chimney can develop problems that need to be repaired.


Cracks in the crown or firebox can be considered fire hazards under the NFPA.

The reason for this is that smoke from a chimney can contain waste particles from a fire.

The black smoke that comes out of a chimney is

These small particles can build up and accumulate inside cracks in the masonry.

This illustration shows the buildup of a chimney flue. It can cause a fire hazard.

Brick cracks can lead to small areas of carbon buildup and waste particles. Some of these could be flammable.

Creosote (an oily substance) is the real culprit. Creosote (an oily substance) is a very similar substance to soot and can ignite by sparks.

Creosote, a flammable chemical, is formed from smoke and vapors of burning wood.

Please Click Here for a Complete Article about Creosote.

Chimney repair

If creosote buildup is more than 1/4 inch, it’s time to have a chimney cleaned.

Look for cracks in mortar around the chimney and fireplace.

Every day, more than 61 chimney fires are lit in the United States.

Don’t panic if cracks develop in your fireplace or chimney.

Fireplace cracks can be repaired quickly. Fire risk could increase if it is not fixed promptly.

Water Penetration

Water penetration can occur at multiple points.

While water penetration can lead to mold growth, destruction, and other serious consequences,

When water reacts with creosote, it becomes acidic. This accelerates brick and mortar decay in fireplaces and chimneys.

Water can get into the chimney through cracks in the crown or chimney shelf.

This can also happen due to defective flashing at the roof–the to-chimbal junction.

Water damage can occur to exterior mortar and interior walls.

To avoid all these dangers, keep a schedule for chimney inspections. Make sure that there is no water infiltration inside any chimney or fireplace.

These water-repellent treatments (also called “waterproofing”) can keep water from your chimney

Crown of Chimneys Broken

The chimney crown, which is located at the top of a chimney, acts as a shield against a number of dangers.

The crown should have an upward slope that directs water away from the flue edges. This prevents mortar or brick from eroding along the vertical chimney surfaces.

A properly constructed chimney crown should be overhanging, made from Portland cement-based mix.

Faulty Flashing

Flashing is the process of sealing the space between the chimney and the roof to keep rainwater out.

It is basically an expansion joint that’s made from two different materials. It allows the chimney and roof to expand and contract at the right rates, without causing any damage.

Here’s an example of flashing which allows water to enter a house that is under construction.

Incorrect Dimensions

If your Chimney is the incorrect dimensions, it will not function properly. The Chimney should be at least 2 feet taller than anything within a 10-foot radius of it. If it isn’t, you could have serious drafting problems. In addition, the Chimney should have a cap that is at least 3 inches wider than the Chimney opening.

Caps that are too small allow rain and snow to enter the Chimney, which can cause serious damage. If you don’t have a cap, or if yours is the wrong size, call a professional to have one installed.

Chimney Caps

A cap is required to prevent water from entering your chimney. This will prevent birds and squirrels from getting into your chimney opening. This is basically a way to get rid of any clutter in your home, such as leaves.

You can also use a cap to keep your home safe from animals that might enter your chimney and cause a fire. A Chimney cap will also help you save money on your heating bill.

If you live in an area where it snows, you need to make sure that your chimney is clear of any snow or ice. If there is any buildup, it can cause your chimney to collapse.

Chimney Deterioration

Bricks, mortar, and other building materials can be damaged by being left in the elements.

Damage to chimney walls is slowly occurring from external elements

A falling chimney is an indication that it is time to rebuild. Bricks are not viable anymore.

Chimney repair

Leaning Chimneys

Has your chimney been checked by a professional to ensure it is not leaning? A lean chimney can cause serious damage to your property, and even collapse.

This is a list of common problems that can occur with your fireplace or chimney.

It is recommended that chimneys be inspected annually to ensure safety and prevent costly repairs.

Inspect your fireplace and chimney every month to ensure that there are no problems.

A 5-minute annual visual inspection can help you save thousands on chimney and fireplace repairs.

A quick checklist for inspecting chimneys and fireplaces.

Check your fireplace for cracks or loose bricks.

Be sure to check the firebox for cracks or broken bricks.

Make sure the damper is off.

Check the chimney exterior for cracks and damage.

Repair any cracks or damage to your fireplace before you use it again.


Brick Mortar Repair in 6 Steps

Although pointing is an easy job, it requires care and the use of the right tools. Without mortar to hold it together, even the most exquisite brickwork can be just as much rubble.

What is Mortar Repointing?

Repointing is when mortar cracks, recedes or falls out of joints. Although this is an easy job, it requires care. You must use the right tools and materials to prevent brick damage and permanent wall defects. This means we use hand tools and lime mortars that are similar to those used by masons 100 years ago.

Mortar over Old Mortar?

You can repoint bricks older than 50 years with modern portland cement-based mortar. However, the guy who will be repointing your next house may not approve of your choice. If your house was built prior to World War II, it is likely that the mortar contains a mixture of lime putty, and sand, so you will need to match it.

If the mortar is not matched, the bond between the brick and rock-hard mortar will eventually break. The bricks will begin to pop off as moisture gets trapped in the walls. Lime mortar is a traditional cushion that flexes with the brick’s movement and allows moisture to move freely out of the wall.

An experienced restoration mason will analyze your mortar to create a compatible mixture. Or, you can send samples of mortar to the U.S. You can also request a blend that is identical to Heritage. Hydraulic lime comes in bags, hardens with water, and is similar to portland cement. Lime putty mortar comes in buckets, hardens slowly with carbon dioxide in the air, and comes in bags.

Brick mortar repair

6 Steps to Mortar Bricks

Step 1

Remove the Bed Joints

To remove horizontal joints, scrape them to a depth of at minimum 3/4 inches. Joints that are more than 1/2 inch wide must be dug to a depth of at least 3/4 inch. These 1/4-inch “butter joints” can be cut with a carbide-tipped grout saw. For larger joints, a cold chisel or an engineer’s tool can be used. Avoid electric angle grinders. They can easily cut through bricks if you aren’t skilled in using them.


Step 2

Clear out the Head Joints

Dig out the vertical joints after removing three to four courses of mortar for the bed-joint mortar. Pay attention not to strike the brick edges below or above. This is where the mortar is removed by tapping a 5-in-1 hammer on a painter’s knife.

Step 3

Wash Down The Wall

With a stiff-bristled toothbrush, remove all crumbly material. Next, check that your tuckpointing trowel blade fits into the joint. You can grind the blade down with an abrasive tool if it is too long. Mist the brick with water until it is completely damp. This is important because dry materials can suck moisture from the mortar, preventing it from curing properly. Do not fill the joints until the next day.

Step 4

Mix the Mortar

Again, mist the brick. Follow the instructions on the bag to stir the water into the dry mixture until it becomes a peanut butter-like consistency and sticks to a trowel. Allow the mixture to rest for 15 minutes until it forms a thin layer of water. Mix the water back into the mixture. Now the mortar is ready for use. It will remain usable for eight hours. You can “retemper,” it if it becomes too dry during that time by adding water occasionally.

Brick mortar repair
Man laying bricks

Step 5

Fill the Joints

A dollop of mortar should be poured onto a brick trowel, hawk, or another flat surface. The mortar should be held up with a bed joint and pushed against the back with the tuckpointing trowel. After removing any voids, make a few passes along the trowel’s edge to fill them in. Then add more mortar until you have filled the joint. After you have completed three to four courses of bed joints, fill the head joints. Final step: Smoothen and compact all mortar using the trowel’s flat surface. Finally, remove any mortar from the brick.

Step 6

Brush the Wall

Brush diagonally across the mortar to remove any mortar crumbs. The fresh mortar can be pulled out by brushing in line with joints. Next, carefully remove any mortar residue from the brick faces. Use a tarp to cover the mortar joints against the sun, wind, or rain for the next three days. Give the wall a misting every day to keep it moist.

How to remove paint from brick

How to Remove Paint from Brick & Concrete

Choose The Right Paint Remover

There are many types of paint removers on the market, and not all are created equal. You need to select a product that is specifically designed for removing paint from masonry surfaces. These products will have labels that say they are safe for use on brick, stone, or concrete.

Some common active ingredients in paint strippers are methylene chloride, caustic soda, and d-limonene. Methylene chloride is a powerful solvent that can dissolve most types of paint. Caustic soda is a strong alkali that will also remove paint. D-limonene is derived from citrus fruits and is less harsh than the other two options.

If you’re not sure which product to use, ask a professional at your local hardware store for guidance.

Prepare The Surface

Before you begin stripping the paint, you need to take some precautions to protect yourself and the surface you’ll be working on. Paint strippers contain harmful chemicals, so it’s important to work in a well-ventilated area. If possible, work outdoors or in a garage with the door open.

You should also wear gloves, goggles, and a respirator to avoid contact with the chemicals. Make sure to cover any areas you don’t want stripper on, such as vegetation or concrete surfaces.

Apply The Paint Stripper

Once you’ve selected a paint stripper and put on the proper safety gear, you’re ready to start applying the product. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. In most cases, you’ll need to apply a thick layer of stripper with a paintbrush or roller and then wait for it to work its magic.

The amount of time you’ll need to wait will vary depending on the type of paint and the stripper you’re using. After the specified time has passed, use a wire brush or putty knife to scrape off the paint.

You may need to apply a second coat of stripper if the paint isn’t coming off easily. Once all the paint has been removed, wash the area with soap and water to remove any residual stripper.

Identify the type of paint that is on the surface

This will determine the best method of removal. Try to remove as much of the paint as possible before using any harsh chemicals or solvents.

If the paint is water-based, you can use a pressure washer with detergent to remove it. If the paint is oil-based, you will need to use a chemical stripper.

Before using any chemicals, always test them on a small, inconspicuous area first.

Wear protective clothing, including gloves and eye protection, when working with any chemicals.

 How to remove paint from brick

Follow the instructions on the product label for safe and effective use

Once the paint is removed, you may need to neutralize the surface with a mild acid, such as white vinegar, to remove any residual chemicals. Rinse the area well with clean water and allow it to dry completely before repainting.

Choose an appropriate solvent or stripper

The first step is to identify the type of paint that is on the bricks. This will determine what kind of stripper or solvent you need to use. Water-based paints can be removed with painting strippers or caustic soda. Oil-based paints require the use of petroleum distillates.

Test the removal method on a small area first

Once you have determined what kind of solvent or stripper to use, it is important to test it on a small, hidden area of the brickwork first. This will help you to gauge how effective the chosen method will be, and whether there is any risk of damage to the bricks themselves.

Apply the solvent or stripper to the paint

Once you are happy with the test area, you can begin to apply the solvent or stripper to the rest of the painted surface. Be sure to follow the instructions on the packaging carefully.

Allow the solvent or stripper to work

After you have applied the stripper or solvent, you will need to allow it time to work. This usually means leaving it for a few hours, although in some cases it may be necessary to leave it overnight.

Scrape off the paint

Once the solvent or stripper has had time to work, you should be able to scrape off the paint fairly easily. A putty knife or scraper should do the job nicely. If there are any stubborn areas of paint remaining, you may need to repeat the process.

Wash away any residue

Once all the paint has been removed, it is important to wash away any residue from the stripper or solvent. This will ensure that no harmful chemicals are left behind. A simple solution of water and dish soap should do the trick nicely.

How to remove paint from brick

Allow the bricks to dry completely

Once you have finished washing away the residue, you should allow the bricks to dry completely before painting them again or applying any sealant. This usually takes a few hours, although in some cases it may be necessary to leave them overnight.

Apply the solvent or stripper and wait for it to take effect

For most products, you’ll need to wait 15-20 minutes. Use a stiff brush to remove the loosened paint. If necessary, apply a second coat of stripper and repeat the process. Once all the paint has been removed, wash the area with soapy water and allow it to dry thoroughly. You may need to sand the surface lightly before repainting or staining.

Scrape off the paint with a wire brush or scraper

For paint that’s tougher to remove, mix a solution of 1 part trisodium phosphate (TSP) and 4 parts water. Apply the solution to the painted surface with a sponge, then scrub with a stiff brush.

Rinse the area well with clean water and allow it to dry completely before painting. If the bricks are very absorbent, you may need to seal them before painting.

If you’re using a power washer to remove paint from brick or concrete, be sure to hold the wand at least 12 inches (30 cm) away from the surface to avoid damaging it. Use a low-pressure setting and move the wand back and forth across the surface as you work. Rinse the area well with clean water when you’re finished.

Rinse the surface with water and allow it to dry completely

If the paint is fresh, you may be able to remove it with a putty knife or other sharp object. Gently scrape the paint away from the surface of the brick.

For older paint, you’ll need to use a chemical stripper. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully, as some strippers can damage the brick.

Once the paint has been removed, rinse the area with water and allow it to dry completely before repainting.

How to drill into brick

How to Drill Into Brick

Choose The Right Drill Bit

The type of drill bit you’ll need to use will depend on the job you’re planning to do. For most projects, a standard masonry drill bit will suffice. These bits are designed for use with a power drill and will easily bore through brick.

If you’re working with particularly hard bricks or planning to do a lot of drilling, you may want to invest in a carbide-tipped masonry bit. These bits are more expensive than standard masonry bits, but they stay sharper for longer, making them ideal for tougher jobs.

Attach The Drill Bit

Once you’ve selected the right drill bit, it’s time to attach it to your power drill. Make sure the drill is turned off before you begin.

If you’re using a standard masonry bit, simply insert the shank (the un-toothed end) into the drill’s chuck and tighten it until it’s snug. If you’re using a carbide-tipped bit, you’ll need to first insert a pilot drill into the chuck. This is a small drill bit that will create a guide hole for the carbide bit. Once the pilot drill is in place, insert the carbide bit into the pilot drill and tighten both in the chuck.

Prepare The Area

Before you start drilling, take a few moments to prepare the area where you’ll be working. Cover any surfaces nearby that could be damaged by flying debris, and clear away any loose bricks or other obstacles that could get in your way.

Mark The Spot

Once the area is prepared, it’s time to mark the spot where you’ll be drilling. Use a pencil or chalk to draw a dot or X on the brick where you want the hole to be. This will give you a starting point to work from and help ensure that your drill bit doesn’t wander.

Start Drilling

With the drill bit attached and the area prepared, you’re finally ready to start drilling. Put on safety goggles or glasses to protect your eyes, and hold the drill so that the bit is lined up with your mark. Then, switch on the drill and apply steady pressure as you bore into the brick.

If you’re using a standard masonry bit, you shouldn’t have any trouble drilling through the brick. If you’re using a carbide-tipped bit, however, you may need to apply a little more pressure to get started. Once the bit starts biting into the brick, it should drill through relatively easily.

Take Your Time

Drilling through brick isn’t a race, so there’s no need to hurry. Go slowly and steadily, and let the drill do the work. If you push too hard, you risk breaking the drill bit or damaging the bricks.

Drilling through brick can create a lot of dust, so it’s a good idea to wear a dust mask to protect your lungs. If possible, drill outdoors or in a well-ventilated area to minimize the amount of dust you’re exposed to.

How to drill into brick

Monitor The Temperature

Drilling through brick generates a lot of friction, which can cause the drill bit and the bricks themselves to heat up quickly. Keep an eye on the temperature of both, and take a break if either starts to get too hot.

Let The Dust Settles

Once you’ve drilled through the brick, it’s important to let the dust settle before continuing with your project. Wait a few minutes for the dust to settle, then use a vacuum or damp cloth to clean up any remaining debris.

Now that you know how to drill into brick, you can tackle all sorts of projects around your home or office. With the right drill bit and a little patience, you can easily bore through brick to create the perfect hole for your needs.

Use A Level To Keep The Bit Straight

Wearing safety goggles, hold the drill bit at a 90-degree angle to the brick. If necessary, use a hammer to help drive the bit into the brick. Start the drill on low speed and then increase the speed once it has caught. Use a level to keep the drill bit straight as you drill.

Apply Firm, Steady Pressure

As you drill, apply firm, steady pressure. Don’t push too hard or the bit will slip. If the bit starts to slip, reposition it and try again.

Use A Masonry Bit

For best results, use a masonry bit designed for use with brick. These bits have sharp, carbide tips that can cut through brick quickly and easily.

Masonry bits come in a variety of sizes. Choose the size that is appropriate for the job at hand. For example, if you need to drill a large hole, you will need a larger bit than if you only need to make a small hole.

How to drill into brick

Keep Your Hands Clear Of The Drill While It’s In Use

.If you’re not using a drill press, make sure to keep your hands clean of the area where the bit will be exiting the brick.

Wear Protective Gear. You should always wear gloves and safety glasses when working with power tools.

Choose The Right Drill Bit. To drill into brick, you’ll need to use a masonry bit. These bits are made of carbide or diamond and are much harder than standard metal or wood bits.

Mark The Location Of The Hole With A Chalk Line Or Pencil. Use a level to make sure your home is straight, then mark the spot with a chalk line or pencil.

Start Drilling Slowly And Increase Speed Gradually. Apply firm, even pressure as you start drilling. Once the bit has penetrated the surface of the brick, you can increase speed.

Let The Bit Do The Work. Don’t apply too much pressure, as this can cause the bit to slip or break.

Cool, The Bit Frequently. To extend the life of your drill bit, it’s important to keep it cool while you’re working. Every few minutes, stop drilling and allow the bit to cool in a cup of water.

Remove The Dust Regularly. Drilling into brick creates a lot of dust. To avoid breathing in this dust, which can be harmful, make sure to remove it regularly with a vacuum or brush attachment.

9 Reasons Why Brick Repair is the Best Choice for Your 2022 Home Improvement Project.

When it comes to home renovations, brick repair is often an overlooked option. Many people believe that repairing brick is expensive and difficult, but this is not always the case. In fact, repairing brick can be a cost-effective and easy way to improve the look of your home.

If you are considering a home renovation project, here are nine reasons why you should choose brick repair over other options.

1. Brick is a classic material that will never go out of style.

Brick has a long history of use in construction, and its timeless appearance makes it a popular choice for both traditional and contemporary designs. With its distinctive colour and textured surface, brick can complement any style or aesthetic, adding character and elegance to any space.

Furthermore, as a remarkably durable material, brick can last for centuries with proper care. A well-maintained home built of brick is an investment that will stand the test of time, providing a classic and stylish backdrop to your family’s life events.

Whether you’re building a new house or giving your existing home an update, brick should be high on your list of considerations.

2. Brick is durable and long-lasting.

Brick is one of the most durable and long-lasting construction materials available. Properly installed and maintained by trained professionals, brick homes can stand the test of time, remaining beautiful and functional for years to come.

Moreover, brick is resistant to fire, weathering, pests, and other environmental factors, making it a low-maintenance option for homeowners. With regular care and maintenance by a professional team of contractors, brick homes can be a sound and safe choice for your home building needs.

Whether you choose to use brick as an exterior material or incorporate it into your indoor construction plans, this sturdy material will certainly stand the test of time.

3. Brick repair can be completed quickly, with minimal disruption to your daily routine.

Brick repair projects are a great way to maintain the beauty and integrity of your home, whatever your needs may be. Whether you are looking for a fast and easy solution for small aesthetic issues, or you desire a more substantial renovation that will require professional help, brick repair can be completed quickly and with minimal disruption to your daily routine.

Thanks to advanced materials and techniques, installing new bricks or repairing existing ones can be done quickly and efficiently by experienced professionals who understand how best to work with this timeless building material.

And with so many options available in terms of design and colour, you can rest assured that your home will always look its best, no matter what the season or weather conditions. So if you are considering a brick repair project for your home, don’t hesitate! With the help of knowledgeable professionals, you can achieve your dream results in no time.

4. Brick is easy to maintain and clean.

Brick is a low-maintenance material and only requires occasional cleaning to keep it looking its best.

When it comes to choosing a low-maintenance building material, few options can match the ease and convenience of brick. This time-tested material is renowned for its durability and easy upkeep and only requires occasional cleaning to keep it looking its best. When it does need to be cleaned, brick is easy to power wash or scrub with soap and water.

As a result, it is an ideal choice for busy homeowners who want to spend more time enjoying their homes and less time on upkeep. Whether you are building a new home or renovating an existing one, consider using brick as a low-maintenance option that will stand the test of time.

5. Brick adds value to your home and can increase its resale value.

Brick is an extremely valuable material for home construction and one that can greatly increase the resale value of your house. Because brick is extremely durable and low-maintenance, buyers are often willing to pay more for a brick home than for other types of construction.

This is particularly true in Southern Ontario, which has a long history of using masonry materials like brick in its architecture. As such, if you’re looking to get the most out of your investment, choosing brick for exterior walls is an excellent choice that can drastically increase your home’s resale value down the line.

So whether you’re building a new home or renovating your existing one, consider opting for brick so that you can rest assured knowing that your house will stand the test of time.

6. Brick is energy-efficient and can help reduce your energy bills.

Brick is a highly effective insulator and can be a great way to improve the energy efficiency of your home. In the winter, it helps to keep heat in, preventing your furnace or other heating systems from having to work as hard. And in the summer, it keeps out the heat, helping to keep your home cooler and more comfortable without consuming as much energy.

What’s more, by improving the insulation properties of your home, brick can help you save money on your energy bills all year round. Whether you’re thinking about installing new windows or upgrading your central air system, replacing or adding the bricks of your house may be a cost-effective and quick approach to reduce energy expenses.

With its unique ability to regulate temperature no matter what season it is, brick is an excellent choice for anyone committed to conserving energy and saving money!

7. Brick is environmentally friendly and sustainable.

Brick is a sustainable and environmentally friendly material that can be used in a variety of ways. It is made from natural materials, such as clay and water, and does not produce any harmful emissions during production. In addition, brick is recyclable and can be reused or repurposed in several ways. For example, old bricks can be crushed and used as gravel or landscaping fill. 

Brick is an increasingly popular choice for sustainably-minded builders and homeowners in Ontario, Canada. In fact, the use of brick helps to conserve energy and resources throughout the product’s life cycle. From the extraction of raw materials to the end-of-life recycling of used brick, this durable material sustainably supports our built environment.

8. Brick is non-toxic and safe for children and pets.

Brick is a non-toxic material that is safe for children and pets. Due to its non-toxic nature, it does not off-gas or releases any harmful chemicals into the air when used in homes with young children or indoor pets.

In addition, because brick is fireproof and non-combustible, it does not contribute to indoor air pollution or pose any safety risks for young children or vulnerable family members. Therefore, for families with young children or inside pets, brick is a great choice for flooring and home building materials.

Not only does it provide a non-toxic and secure living environment, but it also helps to strengthen the structural integrity of the home by providing an extra layer of protection from fires and other disasters.

9. Brick can be used in a variety of home improvement projects.

Home improvement projects generally see a significant uptick during the summer months. Homeowners have more free time and the weather is conducive to working outdoors. That being said, you don’t have to wait until summer to start your brick project. Starting now can give you a leg up on the competition come 2022. Here are a few ideas to get you started: 

  • Walkway: A brick walkway is a great way to add curb appeal to your home. It’s also a relatively simple project that can be completed in a weekend. 
  • Chimney Repair: If your home has a brick chimney, chances are it could use some repair. Winter weather can take its toll on both the bricks and the mortar. Investing in repairs now will help to prevent costly damage down the road. 
  • Garden Wall: Building a brick wall around your garden is not only functional but also adds an element of beauty. Tall plants or climbing vines would look lovely growing up the sides of the wall. 


There are endless possibilities when it comes to using brick in home improvement projects. Whether you’re looking to add curb appeal, repair damage, or simply add a bit of beauty to your home, brick is a great choice.

Classic and stylish, bricks are a timeless material that can add character and curb appeal to any home. And because they’re so durable, well-maintained bricks can last for centuries.

So if you’re looking for a project that will make a lasting impression, call our team of experienced professionals today. We’ll have your bricks looking good as new in no time.


Top 20 Ideas To Make Your Patio Like New Again

Everyone loves a great patio. They’re the perfect place to comfortably relax outside, whether it’s with friends and family or by yourself. 

Because it’s outside, it’s easy for your patio to fall into disrepair. Regular wear and tear combine with the outdoors to damage your patio, regardless of what it’s made of or how often you make repairs. 

However, it’s never too late to make your patio look new again. With a little time and effort, you can turn your old patio into the perfect outdoor space. 

Patio Repair vs. Patio Restoration – What’s the Difference?

The first step to fixing any patio, no matter what it’s made of, is to decide if you need repairs or a full restoration. Let’s cover the difference between the two, so you know where to start. 


patio repair

Repairs are meant to fix up small areas of damage. Every structure loses some structural integrity as time passes, especially something that’s constantly outside, like a patio.

Basic repairs help your patio maintain its functionality and stay structurally sound. They get your existing masonry back into good shape so that you can use it comfortably. If your patio isn’t in too bad condition, you might be able to get by with some minor repairs rather than a full restoration. 


Restoration is usually more intensive than repairs. While the restoration process might include repairs, the goal is a little different.

If you’re restoring a structure, you’re bringing masonry back to its original look. Typically, restoration involves replacing old materials with new ones to make a structure look brand new again. Repairs support and maintain functionality while restoration focuses on revitalization. 

How Much Does It Cost to Renovate a Patio in Canada?

If you’ve decided you need to renovate your patio, you might be considering how much it’ll cost. While you can do some basic repairs yourself, restoration almost always requires the help of a professional. 

Like every type of repair or renovation, the exact cost of renovating your patio will vary depending on your patio’s size, the materials used, your location, and the amount of work needed. For general estimations, the average cost for patio work in Eastern Canada is about $60 per square foot.

These are the average costs for deck work based on materials in Montreal and Toronto according to RenoAssistance.

Material Montreal Toronto
Fiberglass $17 to $21/ sq.ft. (without base structure)

$30 to $40/ sq.ft. (with structure)

$21 to $25/ sq.ft. (without base structure)

$36 to $55/ sq.ft. (with structure)

Treated wood $40 to $50/ sq.ft $50 to $60/ sq.ft.
Cedar $50 to $60/ sq.ft $55 to $66/ sq.ft.
Roasted wood $50 to $60/ sq.ft $60 to $85/ sq.ft
Composite wood $60 to $70/ sq.ft $75 to $85/ sq.ft.
Concrete $60 to $70/ sq.ft. $75 to $85/ sq.ft.


Contact your local masonry repair professional for a more exact estimate of your costs. 

How To Repair A Paver Patio

Like we mentioned above, you can do some minor repairs yourself. If you have a paver patio, most repairs require the same simple solution: replace the brick. 

paver patio.
Image Source – https://davislandscapeky.com/3-major-advantages-of-using-pavers-for-your-patio/

Paver patios are incredibly popular in colder climates as they allow for fluctuation with the changing seasons. While other materials might not be able to withstand harsh weather conditions, paver patios are perfect for anyone who lives somewhere snowy and sunny. 

To get the most out of your paver patio, no matter the time of year, you should ensure that it’s in good shape. The three most common problems with paver patios are sinking, loose, or crooked bricks. Luckily, all three require the same solution. 

What You’ll Need

  • Sand
  • Level
  • Small pry bar or flat screwdriver
  • Broom
  • Rubber mallet
  • Water 

How to Replace a Paver Brick

  1. First, you need to remove the bad brick. You might have to wet the surrounding sand to loosen it. 
  2. Use your pry bar or flat screwdriver to wiggle it loose and take it out. 
  3. Now you can add in the sand for the new brick a little at a time.
  4. Smooth out the sand and tamp it down well. Use your level to make sure you have an even, solid base. 
  5. Put the new brick in and check that it’s the same height as the surrounding bricks. Use your level again to ensure it’s even and avoid trip hazards.
  6. Add more sand.
  7. Use the rubber mallet to tap the brick securely into place.
  8. Check the evenness with your level one more time. 
  9. Add more sand, using the broom to sweep it into the crevices surrounding the brick.
  10. Wet the sand, so it sinks into the cracks. 
  11. Repeat steps 9 and 10 as needed. 
  12. Sweep away excess sand.

How to Repair Cracks in a Concrete Patio

Concrete patio cracks
Image Source – https://turnbullmasonry.com/common-concrete-patio-repairs/

Concrete patios are a little harder to fix, but you can still do some minor repairs yourself. Small cracks are the easiest to fix yourself, and you want to repair them as soon as possible. It doesn’t take much for small cracks to turn into big ones that can cause permanent damage.

While you can repair small concrete cracks yourself, there are a few things you should know before you begin. First, you can’t fix it with concrete. 

The crack needs to be flexible to adjust with shifting concrete. The polymer-based filler you use in this fix allows for minor shifts while maintaining structural integrity.

Second, any crack wider than ½ an inch, or missing or tilted concrete, needs professional repair. You’ll have to find a masonry contractor in your area that can fix it for you. 

Finally, the repair will always be visible. You might be able to hide it with paint if you use a paintable filler, but there will always be a patch on your patio. 

Now that you know the basics, we can cover how exactly you fix a small crack in your concrete patio. 

What You’ll Need

  • Caulking gun
  • Hammer
  • Heavy-duty flat mason’s chisel
  • Wire brush
  • Shop vacuum
  • Safety glasses
  • Hearing protection
  • Putty knife
  • Utility knife
  • Polymer-based concrete crack filler
  • Solid crack filler (This can be a closed-cell backer rod or clean sand and a funnel)

How to Fix a Crack in Concrete

  1. First, you’ll need to widen the crack. With your safety glasses and hearing protection on, place the edge of your masonry chisel into the crack. 

Keeping the chisel at a 45-degree angle, tap the back of it lightly with a hammer. Force it about ¼-inch into the crack, following the outline of the crack as you tap. Ideally, you want to create a v-shape for easy filling.

  1. Use the wire brush to brush out the crack and dislodge small particles. 
  2. Take the shop vac and thoroughly clean out the crack. Any leftover concrete particles can compromise the repair, so you want to make sure you get every last piece out.
  3. If the crack is deeper than ¼-inch, you’ll have to add some solid crack filler and bring it up to ¼-inch depth. Either dispense clean sand through the funnel or use the closed-cell backer rod.
  4. Now you can add the concrete crack filler. Cut off the application tip and place a bead of filler into the crack.
  5. Draw the filler along the crack and make sure it fully settles. To avoid gaps, squirt a small amount onto a piece of cardboard to get out air bubbles and reach the thicker filler. 
  6. Use the putty knife to trowel down the putty. Draw the knife in the direction of the crack.
  7. Add more filler if needed and trowel it down.
  8. Allow the filler to cure for at least 24 hours before using your patio or painting or surfacing the patch. 

20 Ideas to Make Your Patio Look Like New

Outside of minor repairs, there are a lot of ways you can make your patio look brand new. Freshening up your outdoor space with some new plants or furniture can have a huge impact on the overall look of your patio. Here are 20 ways you can revitalize your patio, whether it’s made of concrete, wood, paver bricks, or something else. 

1. Clear out the weeds.

Clearing the weeds growing around your patio or between bricks is a small change that can make the space look a lot cleaner. 

2. Use a concrete re-surfacer.

A concrete re-surfacer allows you to make your concrete look brand new. They’re easy to apply, and you can pick whichever shade you want. 

3. Address minor damage.

Taking the time to fix small cracks or slightly uneven bricks not only helps your patio look better but also makes it safer. You eliminate trip hazards and prevent the damage from affecting your patio’s structural integrity.

4. Give it a good wash.

Don’t underestimate the power of a good wash. With the help of a good power washer, which you can usually rent from your local hardware store, you can get out deeply embedded dirt. 

5. Add shade. 

There are a lot of options for adding shade to your patio, from awnings to umbrellas to canopies. Even if it doesn’t get particularly warm where you live, coverage from the sun protects your skin and allows you to stay outside longer. 

6. Add a pergola.

If you’re looking for a more decorative structure, you can always add a pergola. While they don’t offer much shade, they can take a basic structure and turn it into a beautiful outdoor space. 

7. Get some greenery.

Native plants take any outdoor space to another level. With some easy-to-manage greener, whether it’s around the edge of your patio or in pots, you can add some color and life to your space. 

8. Add more color.

While plants can add a touch of lively green, you can also add some more color with furniture or paint. Try to match the outside of your house for a great overall look.

9. Find an outdoor rug.

Adding an outdoor rug is the easiest way to bring life to your patio. Find one that you love and place it on your patio for a splash of decor. 

10. Paint your concrete.

If you have a concrete patio, but you’re tired of the same grey, you can paint it. While you can always stick with a single color, you can also paint a pattern for a unique look.

11. Use deck flooring. 

Deck flooring is an easy way to change up your patio. Just find the flooring you love that matches your home and place it down. 

12. Add a border.

No matter what your patio is made of, a border of a matching material can add style. You can use railing, low walls, or even a small paver border to outline your patio. 

13. Repair old furniture.

If you have some outdoor furniture that’s seen better days, you can easily fix it up with some paint and a thorough clean. As long as your furniture is in decent condition, repairing it can let you use it for a few more years. 

14. Get new furniture.

If your outdoor furniture is past saving, look for new pieces in secondhand stores or online. You can always fix up lightly used furniture, and you might find some pieces in great condition. 

15. Add outdoor cushions.

Adding a few cushions could be the thing that brings your whole patio together. They make your furniture more comfortable and help your outdoor space look better.

16. Hang lights.

For nights spent outside, hang some outdoor lights that you leave up year-round. 

17. Add a small fountain.

A small fountain can make your patio feel more relaxing and add an elegant touch to your outdoor space. 

18. Get a fire pit.

If it’s safe for you to have one, a fire pit can let you use your patio even when it’s cold out. Just make sure you’re following all safety precautions and maintaining distance from your home.

19. Put up torches.

Torches are another option for lighting that can add flair to your patio.

20. Hang a bird-feeder.

To bring in some natural wildlife, hand a bird-feeder near your patio. An easy way to relax is to sit outside and watch the birds, no matter the weather. 

Final Thoughts

Your patio is a great place to relax outside. With some repairs or restorations, you can make your patio look new again and create the perfect outdoor space. 

Brick & concrete repair

The Ultimate Guide to Brick and Concrete Repairs

Like every other material, brick and concrete start to require repair over time. Depending on the environment and use of your masonry, might be more prominent, leading to more damage. Anyone with masonry in their home or on their property needs to know the basics of brick and concrete repairs. While you don’t need to make the repairs yourself, though you can in some cases, you should understand when you need to get bricks repaired, what the process entails, and how much it will cost you. 

1. Can Broken Bricks Be Repaired? How?

Broken bricks
Image source – https://dodsonfoundationrepair.com/are-cracked-bricks-a-sign-of-a-broken-foundation/

The good news is that you can repair broken bricks. You don’t have to write off the whole structure because of a few damaged bricks. In fact, we’ll even tell you how to complete a basic brick repair. But before you get out your chisel and mortar, there’s more you should know. You need to figure out some things first, like how bad the damage is, what’s causing the damage, and if you can repair it yourself.

How Bad is the Brick?

First, find out if you’re looking at a simple solution or if your brick needs more work. Isolated cracks or chips that are only on a few bricks can be fixed pretty easily. You can probably repair the structure with a few replacement bricks. However, some structures might require a lot more work. If your structure is load-bearing or has more than a few bricks that need to be replaced, you should consider hiring a professional. It’s better to get help from an expert than risk hurting yourself or damaging the structure.  Here are some common causes of brick damage that go beyond standard wear-and-tear. 

  • Underlying expansion or contraction 

Different bricks and types of mortar can have different expansion or contraction rates. If you have multiple types of materials with conflicting expansion rates, that can lead to cracking or structural instability. 

  • Salt damage

People that live in cold areas probably use salt in the winter to keep their sidewalks and driveways safe. However, that same salt can damage brickwork. Salt damage can erode bricks and concrete, usually leaving behind white marks on the masonry. 

  • Water damage

Water damage is another common cause of brick deterioration. Regular water running over brick or concrete can slowly erode the material, eating away at masonry. Typically, water damage on masonry looks like the bricks have been half-dissolved. 

  • Foundation movement

A settling foundation can cause a lot of damage to homes and buildings. To see if a moving foundation is the reason for your broken bricks, check for a staircase-like crack coming from the base of the structure. If you find one, call a professional, as the stability of the structure might be compromised. 

  • Grade level changes

The grade level of brick is supposed to be a foot above ground level in most areas. However, some home projects, like adding a deck, stairs, or soil, can change the grade level. Bricks trapped near ground level are likely absorbing water, leading to erosion and brick damage. 

How to Complete a Minor Brick Repair

If your bricks don’t fall into the above categories, you might be able to make your repairs yourself. As long as you’re only replacing a few bricks with minor damage, you can probably get the project done without hiring a professional. However, if you’re not comfortable with masonry or DIY projects like this, it’s better to reach out and ask for help than risk injuring yourself or damaging your structure. 

Removing and Replacing a Brick

What You Need

  • A replacement brick that matches your other bricks in makeup and appearance
  • Mortar mix 
  • A mortar mix pigment if you need to match it to the rest of the structure
  • Cold chisel
  • Hammer
  • Wire brush
  • If you have one, a power drill can make the process easier.
  • Pointing trowel
  • Joint strike tool
  • Eye protection
  • Leather work gloves

Removing the Brick

First, you have to remove the brick. Make sure you have on your eye protection and leather gloves to protect yourself from possible injuries. If you’re worried about dust, you can also wear a basic face mask to keep from breathing in debris.  Start with the cold chisel and a heavy hammer. Break the brick into pieces to remove it, but be careful not to damage any of the other bricks. If you’re removing multiple bricks, start with the top one and move down. Once you’ve removed all the old brick pieces, chisel out the old mortar. Try to make it as clean as possible. When all the old mortar is gone, clean the joints of any that’s left with a wire brush. Use a vacuum to clear out the entire opening, then rinse it with water. Now, you can put in your new brick.

Replacing the Brick

Mix your mortar along with pigment if you need it. Take your pointing trowel and put mortar on the bottom and sides of the brick opening. You want to have about one inch of mortar. Slightly wet your new brick to absorb the mortar better, and then apply mortar to the brick’s top and sides. Slide it into the opening, and don’t worry. Mortar’s supposed to ooze out. Tap the brick into place until it’s flush with the rest of the bricks. If you need it, apply more mortar with the pointing trowel. The mortar should be full to the face of the brick. Then, you can tool the mortar joints with the joint strike tool to ensure they match with the adjacent mortar joints. When the mortar is almost dry, use the wire brush and clear away the excess mortar.  Finally, one of the most important steps is to make sure the new brick stays moist to help it cure. Spray the whole repair with water after finishing with the mortar.  For the next three days, make sure the brick remains moisturized. Some people cover the repair with a plastic sheet to help it retain moisture, though you don’t have to do this. 

Fixing Loose Mortar Joints

Loose mortar joints can let moisture into your interior walls and the surrounding mortar. That’s why it’s so important to make sure all the mortar joints in your brickwork are fixed with a process called tuckpoint.

What You Need

  • Mortar mix
  • Mortar mix pigment if you need to match to the existing brickwork
  • Cold chisel
  • Heavy hammer
  • Sharp, small trowel
  • Scrub brush
  • Eye protection
  • Leather work gloves

How to Tuckpoint?

Image source – https://www.chimneyrepairdetroitmi.com/blog/use-tuckpointing-and-repointing-to-extend-the-life-of-your-masonry/

With your eye protection and leather gloves on, use the cold chisel and hammer to remove the old mortar. Cut at least a half-inch into the crumbling joint and remove all loose mortar.  Then, rinse the joints with fairly strong water pressure to make sure you got all the loose mortar and dust out. Mix the new mortar, but before applying it to the mortar joint, wet the joint again. Use your trowel to fill the joints with mortar and pack it in tightly. You don’t want any air holes or gaps.  Like with the brick replacement, you need to keep the mortar moist for the next few days. Mist it regularly to ensure it cures properly, and when it’s completely dry, use the wire brush to remove excess mortar. 

2. How Much Does Brick Repair Cost in Canada?

There’s no shame in hiring a professional! When it comes to masonry and construction projects, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. If you aren’t comfortable completing projects yourself or your bricks are significantly damaged, do some research and find qualified experts in your area. If you’re wondering how much money you might end up spending, you’re not the only one. The cost is a top concern for anyone looking to hire a professional. However, the cost can vary significantly depending on the severity of the damage, how much needs to be repaired, the type of work being completed, and your location. According to Reno Assistance, the average rate for masonry work in Canada is about $120 an hour. Home Advisor reports that brick repair in America can range between 710 and 2,287 USD, about $885 and $2,853 in Canadian dollars.  Of course, those numbers include everything from minor brick repairs to restorations. If you want to hire a professional for brickwork, you’ll have to look at your local masons. Find someone that you can trust to complete the work and ask for a quote. To get the best idea of how much something will cost, try to get quotes from a few different people. 

3. Brick Repair vs. Brick Restoration – What’s The Difference?

If you’re looking into brick repair yourself, you’ve probably seen the word restoration somewhere. But what’s the difference between the two?

Brick Repair

Brick repair is a much more functional project, taking damaged sections and replacing them with new materials. These projects patch and plug gaps and cracks or remove and replace outdated materials that may have lost their structural integrity. The purpose of repairs is to take existing masonry and get them in good condition. 

Brick Restoration

Restoration, on the other hand, is a more intensive project. While it might include similar work to repairs, the purpose of restoration is to bring the masonry back to its original look.  For structures from older eras, restoration uses period-appropriate materials to ensure the brickwork remains standing and matches the rest of the structure. This often involves removing old masonry, replacing it, and refinishing it.  While repairs often focus on a specific area or piece of masonry, restoration is usually for an entire building. Improving a building’s structural integrity requires a lot more work than a few repairs. 

The Difference

If you’re trying to figure out if you need repairs or restoration, remember that repairs fix while restoration replaces. Though repairs might involve replacing bricks or concrete, and restoration often involves repairs, the overall purposes of the projects differ. Repairs are focused on small fixes, and restoration is for overall improvement. 

4. What are the Types of Brickwork?

To figure out what type of repairs your masonry needs, you also need to know the type of brickwork you have. There are two different categories, one of which has three classes.  The first is brickwork in mud. This is the most basic and cheapest type of masonry, where bricks are joined together with mud. Typically, people in North America don’t use brickwork in mud for anything more complex than short walls. The second category is brickwork in cement, which uses cement to join the bricks together. There are three classes of brickwork in cement, each defined by the type of bricks and the purpose of the brickwork. 

  1. First-class brickwork uses cement of lime mortar and bricks with sharp surfaces and edges. These bricks should be regular in shape, made of completely burnt good earth, and a deep cherry red or copper color.
  2. Second-class brickwork uses ground-molded bricks, which have a rough and irregular shape. They’re usually burnt in kilns, and they offer great durability and strength. 
  3. Third-class brickwork is made with poor quality bricks that are rough with unfair edges. They’re ground-molded and burnt in clamps and are typically unusable for areas that experience lots of rain. 

You likely have first-class brickwork, as this is the best option for permanent structures. First-class bricks are the strongest and most durable type of brick, though the other classes have their uses. 

Final Thoughts

Brick and concrete repairs seem like they’d be complex, but they’re not as difficult as they look. With the right tools and a good understanding of how to fix bricks, you can easily make some basic repairs yourself.  If you need a professional’s help, make sure to find someone with good reviews that asks for a fair price. While you might be able to do some repairs yourself, don’t risk injury or damage. Hire a professional if you don’t feel comfortable making the repairs or if they require a lot of work. 

retaining walls

Everything You Need to Know About Retaining Walls

If you ever walk past a house that seems to have come right out of Jane Austen or imagine yourself strolling through a countryside lane in Middle Earth, chances are that there might be a stone wall somewhere in there; perhaps pushed up against the side of a hill. This is called a retaining wall. 

Like the best things in life, a retaining wall is both pretty and functional. If you have a need or a desire for one in your own landscaping to up the quality of your outdoor aesthetic, knowing more information will always help you to make the best decisions. This guide will help you know exactly what a retaining wall is and how it works, how much a retaining wall will cost, tips and tricks about retaining walls, how a retaining wall will add to your yard, and even some of the best and most creative retaining wall ideas out there! 

What is a Retaining Wall and How Does it Work?

retaining walls
Image Source – https://www.bobvila.com/articles/retaining-walls/

A retaining wall is a wall built of a material solid enough to “retain” (hold in place) dirt and soil behind it. These might be used in a front or back garden, flowerbeds, or any other landscaping structures to ensure that rain, erosion, and other natural issues don’t cause shifts in the soil and a spread or collapse of whatever it is you were trying to keep together. 

There are four primary types of retaining walls: gravity retaining walls, reinforced retaining walls, sheet piling retaining walls, and anchored retaining walls.

Gravity Retaining Walls

Gravity retaining walls

Gravity retaining walls tend to be a little bit shorter in height and rely solely on their own mass (and, ergo, the laws of gravity working with their weight) to keep soil in check. This allows versatility with the materials that can be used when building a gravity wall, and in general, they are a simpler structure to build, with the wall and perhaps a trench or concrete seal at the bottom being the only necessary ingredients. 

Reinforced Retaining Walls

Reinforced retaining walls
Image Source – https://www.hcgeosynthetics.com/geogrid/pp-biaxial-geogrid/geogrid-reinorced-retaining-wall.html

Also known as cantilevered retaining walls, reinforced walls are one of the stronger models because of the foundational support that they exhibit. The wall runs in an L-shape, with the main part being above ground and holding the soil in place, while the shorter part in the form of a slab goes beneath the bed. The weight of the dirt on top of this slab is what keeps it from falling forward. Some reinforced retaining walls have additional structural help in the foundation. 

Sheet Piling Retaining Walls

Sheet piling retaining walls
Image Source – https://surfcivil.blogspot.com/2012/11/sheet-pile.html

If you have soft soil and are tight on space, a sheet piling wall might be your best bet. Sheet piling walls are just a thin piece of material (usually steel, wood, or vinyl) that is driven into the ground by the soil. Sometimes there is additional support offered with a vertical corrugated structure. 

Anchored Retaining Walls

Anchored retaining walls
Image Source – https://vincivilworld.com/tag/anchored-retaining-wall-advantages-and-disadvantages/

An anchored retaining wall is when anchors are driven into the ground to support the wall, and then they expand while below ground through mechanical or pressurized means from above. Anchored walls can help support any of the other three types of walls, though are most typically used for either large sheet piling walls or a higher load. 


Geogrid isn’t a type of retaining wall, but rather a type of material that is helpful for adding to the strength of the wall. It’s a mesh of sorts that acts as a support to the soil that is being kept inside the boundaries. The soil grabs for the geogrid rather than pushing on the wall, and so it alleviates much of the pressure on the stones. Geogrid can be so strong that even sand castles can support concrete when using it!

How Does a Retaining Wall Work? 

Essentially, a retaining wall will take a sloping property and help make it functional and beautiful, leveling out certain areas for texture and aesthetic and protecting the yard from the damages of erosion.

Using a variety of materials (stone, brick, wood, concrete, etc.), a retaining wall can even be practical outside of keeping soil in, as it can provide things like outdoor seating or even some privacy if placed correctly. 

The materials are stacked or pushed into the ground to create a barrier around the soil bed that they are hemming in, and the soil cannot escape due to the strength of the structure. It makes dangerous land safe (and also makes them ideal for flower beds and gardens!).

It depends primarily on the material that you decide to use (plus labor and parts), but it can cost thousands of dollars to build even one retaining wall. But don’t let that deter you! They have a purpose beyond their beauty, but the fact that they have such an additional aesthetic appeal will add value to your life, and to your home. 

Ask your engineer for a price per square foot; on average it is:

  • Can $19-$38 for basic concrete blocks.
  • Can $18 for brick.
  • Up to Can $32 for wood. 
  • Up to Can $50 for stone or poured concrete.

So now, if you’ve decided that a retaining wall is right for you and your yard, let’s look at some practical tips for what to do – and what not to do – when adding one into your landscaping. 

The Do’s and Don’ts of Building a Retaining Wall

It can be exciting to add a new structure to your home! But keep in mind that retaining walls are not only meant to be beautiful but meant to be functional. Here are some tips to keep in mind while making decisions for your retaining wall. 

Do Get Help from an Engineer

It might be expensive, but it will be worth it in the long run to have a retaining wall that works. It’s not that you can’t DIY, but installing a retaining wall is more complicated than you might think (especially one taller than four feet) and checking over your plans with a professional could make things much easier.  

Do Check Your Materials

Is that geogrid, or snow fence? Are you sure that’s the material you want for your wall? Have you double-checked your measurements? It can save a lot of work, in the long run, to check everything before you make decisions that you can’t go back on. 

Do Confirm With Your Local Authorities

You might need permission and permits to build your retaining wall, so know of any potential problems before you begin construction! And don’t start digging before you have checked if there is a pipe or line where you’re planning to make a trench! Call DigSafe for your state to make sure that you don’t have any dangerous complications. 

Do Lay Materials Evenly

If you use, say, cinder blocks to make your wall and put the first row on a slope that goes down to the side, you will find yourself laying an entire wall that goes the same direction, which looks messy. If you need to, build tiers of walls rather than one large one, but make sure that the bottom layer of each wall is on even ground! 

Your wall should be sloping from top to bottom in a way that leans into the soil it is retaining! Just not from side to side. 

Don’t Put Your Wall Near Problematic Roots

The last thing you want is tree roots ruining the structure you’ve just built! A quality foundation is imperative to a good retaining wall, but Mother Nature can disrupt that if you don’t choose a good location to build. 

Don’t Forget About Water!

Water is the enemy of all structures. Groundwater can begin to make your wall unstable if you don’t plan for it ahead of time, so it is extremely important to build a drainpipe and gravel or another draining mechanism into your design to account for the flow. 

How Installing a Retaining Wall Will Add Beauty to Your Backyard

Retaining walls can be some of the most beautiful pieces in your landscaping if you design it right. Here are some of the primary things to consider when you are thinking aesthetically about your wall. 


The materials you choose should compliment your home, the rest of your yard, and whatever the retaining wall is supporting (garden, flowers, etc.). Below are the most common materials. 

Stone is timeless and popular for retaining walls as it adds a more grounded feel to them. Plus, they are lower maintenance than some other materials! 

Brick is low maintenance, too, and punctuates a lawn with a very intentional accent. Brick is cozy, clean, and clear – great for bringing attention to your walls! 

Concrete is heavy and durable, and while its aesthetic doesn’t fit everywhere, it gives a clean and urban vibe that invites imagination to collaborate with its blank slate. 

Finally, wood is a great choice for adding a natural feel to your yard and has a wide variety of options that can match many locations. 

In the Soil

Growing something inside your retaining wall will automatically elevate the elegance of your yard. Flowers of any sort will evoke Versailles when you see them peeping over tiers of block stone walls, and even just greenery will be sure to let people know that you are intentional with your choice of decoration. 

You can even plant small trees (with non-invasive roots, of course) near (not on) your retaining wall! To have an inviting yard is to tell people that you respect them and yourself, and the land that you live on. 

Twenty Cool Ideas for your Retaining Wall 

  1. A brown wood-tiered wall that only grows grass gives a sleek, modern look that almost turns your yard into gigantic steps of a giant. Another great idea for grass retaining walls involves grass-covered steps and gives the impression of a naturally occurring staircase! 
  2. Building a retaining wall around a centerpiece, like a fountain in a courtyard, takes the level of architecture from “pretty” to “dancing-in-Europe-at-sunset-gorgeous.” 
  3. Untreated steel, while not a conventional material, gives almost a post-apocalyptic vibe that can go well with desert homes or a rustic farmhouse. Or try marble for a grandiose display! 
  4. Using huge boulders as your material easily gives the impression of a wall built long ago that has remained standing for centuries. It’s whimsical and impressive at the same time. 
  5. Building benches into your retaining wall gives a romantic feel to the landscape, no matter what material you use!
  6. Putting a matching in-ground pool into the center of your retaining wall can look and feel like a garden oasis; who wouldn’t love that?
  7. Making tiers of steps that lead up your wall into a walkway or entrance to your home gives your house the feel of a castle, and gives your guests the experience of walking up to one!
  8. An intentionally uneven wall with carefully placed plants is the perfect opportunity to have a waterfall running down your retaining wall. Just be sure to have carefully placed pipes to handle it! 
  9. Basic concrete can sound boring, but hand your kid a box of sidewalk chalk and let them get to work changing that blank slate into mural after mural of colorful artwork!
  10. Draping plants lend a mysterious, Victorian appeal to a retaining wall – especially if it is so concealed by leaves that it looks more like a hedge than rocks!
  11. Large, flat rocks built as steps into a garden retaining wall are like building stepping stones across a magical pond. In other words, beautiful and desirable. 
  12. You can use shaped stones to create patterns on your wall, like rows of diamonds! It’s eye-catching and eye-keeping. 
  13. A latticed retaining wall, especially a tall one, has the opportunity for many different plants to grow out of it and show a vast vertical garden to your guests! 
  14. If you live in a place with gorgeous natural rock landscaping then you can consider using that to build your retaining wall and blend in with your natural habitat, making it look almost as though your home was raised upright from the ground. 
  15. Multiple high retaining walls can make little pockets of privacy – almost like house rooms in your backyard. 
  16. Multicolored materials make for a vibrant wall that pops out to the eye and brings charm to any yard. You can try making a mosaic with flat stones and lines in between – beautiful! 
  17. Textured material walls – interlocking blocks, overlaying blocks, even using garden planters as part of the wall – are a great choice for anyone looking for an artistic aesthetic that delights the eye!
  18. Using different materials for one wall (like stone and wood) is a cool way to mix vibes and give a unique flavor to your home. 
  19. Sleepers are materials that are used to keep a structure in place, like the flat railroad tie that supports the other two. Using vertical sleepers can add a very smooth look to your retaining wall, almost as if using a cookie-cutter on your grass!
  20. Lights. You can add lights to your retaining wall and give it a warm, adventurous look that is great for summer evenings around a grill or fire pit (which you can also build into your retaining wall!) 

Retaining walls are beautiful, practical additions to any home, and elevate the quality of life to anyone who experiences them. There is something beautiful about walls, grass, greenery, and flowers all mixed together to preserve soil and preserve elegance. Call your local engineers and landscapers and tell them about your dream retaining wall! They want to help you as much as you want to build it.