Mortar Repair

Tuckpointing is the process of filling in missing, cracked or deteriorated mortar joints in masonry walls. In this process the installer removes the damaged mortar if necessary, then installs fresh pointing mortar into the open mortar joint by ‘tucking’ or pushing it into the damaged joint with a ‘tuckpointer’ or a ‘pointing tool’. He will also color blend the new pointing mortar to match the existing mortar color as close as possible. Once the mortar has been ‘tucked’ into place, the installer will use several different tools to ‘tool’ or finish the fresh pointing mortar so that the joint finish matches the existing mortar joint finish.

Well it is and though the average homeowner can get mortar from a DYI center and push it into a joint, it can and usually results in a sloppy or smeared finish. Though this will close the mortar joint from the elements which is good, the unsightly finish may or may not be acceptable to a homeowner depending on the location and situation.

If you want the joint to ‘disappear’ with the repair, then you may wish to contact and experienced masonry repair professional. You will want to look for someone who is not only an expert but is artistic and able to match and blend colors so that the final mortar color matches the existing. He must also have the knowledge to understand the proper time to ‘tool’ the fresh pointing mortar as well as the proper tooling sequence that makes for a seamless final appearance.

If you see cracks in your brick, block or stone you are in need of tuckpointing. Whether you choose to do this repair yourself or hire a professional will be determined by the final results you are looking for.

For a seamless repair that ‘disappears’ we recommend that you contact your masonry repair professional for further evaluation.

Michael Olding is tradesman and consultant in the field of restorations and repairs and currently operates a restoration and repair business in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is also a Master in the field of masonry construction, restorations and repairs.