Tuckpointing: Making Your Chimney Good As New

If you have a chimney, you know that it requires a significant amount of maintenance. Besides regular cleaning,  you may notice that the mortar in your chimney needs to be replaced. This process is called tuckpointing, and it can prevent some serious damage in the future. 

What is Mortar?

The mortar in your chimney is the material that holds the bricks together. It is typically made of sand, binder, and water.  

Why Should I Get Tuckpointing Done?

There are several benefits to tuckpointing your chimney. Mortar prevents water from leaking through the masonry in your chimney. When water gets in, it can deteriorate your chimney and even cause further water damage in your home through water damage, mold, and mildew. Tuckpointing prevents this water from getting into your chimney by creating a new, water-proof seal. This will make your chimney last longer. This means that your home is more valuable. Although tuckpointing is a long process, it is significantly cheaper than replacing the whole chimney. 

When do I Need Tuckpointing Done?

Mortar will generally last over twenty-five years. However, this varies depending on the amount of stress the mortar experiences. Age is a good way to determine if you need to call for someone to do tuckpointing. However,  if you're unsure if you should call a professional, such as someone from AAA-1 Masonry & Tuckpointing, yet, there's the key test. When you scrape a key against mortar, it should not damage it. If you scrape the key across the mortar and you notice that it scrapes off and scratches the mortar, it is time to replace it. 

What Exactly is Tuckpointing?

In simple terms, tuckpointing is the process of replaceing old mortar with new mortar. The first step is to remove the old mortar. When doing this, the workers will dig it out an even length. Next, the new mortar will be put in the old mortar's place. Finally, the new mortar will be made to match the desired color. Tuckpointing is best done in the summer. Waiting through winter will add significant damage to your mortar. The high amounts of snow will create more water damage to your chimney. 

Can I Tuckpoint my Own Chimney?

Tuckpointing can be done at home by a person with the right tools and DIY confidence. The tools required are typically an angle grinder with a 4 inch diamond blade. You will also need a brick trowel and tuck pointer. Removing the mortar will require a hammer and a chisel.