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mikefra24 07-16-2012 10:00 PM

Crumbling brick wall
3 Attachment(s)
Hello. First time posting and first time to site, but unfortunately I feel I may only be a taker and not so much a contributer...I have done a fair bit of home projects, but most have been a one time only type thing and not nearly enough to offer advice- sorry.

A friend has asked me what I could do to improve the 'look' of the crumbling bricks at each corner of her detached garage. I could easily make something to cover it up- but my concern is that the bricks will continue to crumble unless something is done there? Any input would be greatly appreciated!

CallMeVilla 07-16-2012 10:08 PM

Wish I knew where you live. This looks like damage from freeze-thaw caused by having your brick too low to the ground. Water wicks up into the brink then freezes. This kills the brick. If you simply chip out and replace the brick, you will not fix the problem of water wicking.

People who live in cold climates will know more . . .

mikefra24 07-16-2012 11:40 PM

Hi- thanks for ur response! You are right, I live in Edmonton, Alberta (Canada-eh!) and the winters can get pretty cold!! - I don't think this brick us structural at all...

BridgeMan 07-17-2012 01:22 AM

Looks like frreeze-thaw damage on bricks that weren't intended for severe weather conditions. A practical repair would consist of removing the damaged members, forming and pouring concrete collars, offset from the brick face and with a sloped top. Using air-entrained concrete, of course.

nealtw 07-17-2012 07:58 AM

This is what happens when real brick is cheaper that the fake stuff, but there was no break ledge so set it on the driveway.

mikefra24 07-17-2012 09:37 AM

Having never done any kind if masonry, how difficult would 'pouring and forming' of concrete collars be? The lady who owns the house is a widow, and not wanting to spend too much- but she is also tired of covering up those spots with flower boxes-lol

nealtw 07-17-2012 10:07 AM

The site below will show you what a brick ledge should be. The ledge is there to carry the weight of the brick. Yours is supported by the morter to the wall and hopefully he installed brick ties to the wood structure. It should have been built with a gap behind it with weep holes at the bottom above grade so water could get out. Installing a concrete ledge may just move the problem up to the next brick. Waite for more suggestions before you go for it.

CallMeVilla 07-17-2012 10:28 AM

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This picture tells you all you need to know about the wall construction as it SHOULD have been done. You have to examine the damaged wall to see if this was the construction -- my guess is they did not.

If not, I suspect you could pour a collar at the bottom using 2x6 material to elevate the base. Then, you could remove brick high enough to install flashing, making sure you have building paper behind it. The, reinstall bricks back down to the collar. Your goal to to shed water and re-seal the brick so the freeze-thaw does not kill it again.

This is why I live in Southern California. :D

nealtw 07-17-2012 11:36 AM

Water enters the brick from two places, we can see in two places where water has wicked up on the concrete walls beside the bricks and as brick is a darker colour, it will get warmer in the sun and wicks up more moisture. So I don't think just adding concrete under this will help, never mind that the concrete deck can move too.
The brick itself can absorb moisture from rain and needs a place to drain.
This lady isn't moving so a flipper fix isn't in order.

mikefra24 07-17-2012 01:15 PM

Thanks for the input everybody, but I'm still confused as to the best/easiest way to fix this up...

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