Do you have any masonry structures on your property or in your home and would like to get some masonry maintenance advice from experts about the best way to care for them? Whether you have a retaining wall, fireplace, or flagstone path or stairs, you’ll want to read the following 19 best pieces of masonry maintenance advice you’ll hear anywhere. After reading, if you still have questions or concerns, contact the stone masonry experts at Royal Masonry.
Masonry Maintenance Advice
We have gathered together 19 of the best pieces of masonry maintenance advice you’ll ever find. Read on to learn more about how to keep your walls, fireplaces, patios, and walkways looking beautiful for many years.
1. Make Sure Your Retaining Wall Has Proper Drainage: Retaining walls require proper drainage so that water and wet soil will not build up behind the wall and damage it.
2. Clean Wall Weep Holes: If your wall was built with weep holes along the base, make sure to keep these openings clean by using a length of wire or screwdriver to dig out anything that may be blocking them.
3. Check Your Retaining Wall Drain Pipe: If you have a drain pipe behind your wall, make sure you check that it isn’t plugged, especially during rainy months.
4. Choose The Right Plants Near Walls: If you are putting plants near your retaining wall, make sure you choose types that don’t have migrating roots which may damage the base of your wall.
5. Space Your Plants Correctly Near Walls: According to bhg.com, it’s best to plant flowers and ground covers close to your walls. Small shrubs should be put at least 3 feet away; large shrubs and small trees need to be at least 6 feet away; a large tree should be at least 15 feet away.
6. Repoint Deteriorated Mortar: If the mortar in your wall starts to crumble or deteriorate, you should have it replaced as soon as possible. This is called repointing.
7. Replace Spalling Bricks: Check for any bricks that show signs of spalling (water damage) and have them replaced.
8. Fix the Source of the Water Damage to Bricks: If your bricks have become damaged due to spalling, it isn’t enough just to replace the damaged bricks. You will also need to find the source of the water damage and have that addressed as well.
9. Seal Your Flagstone: To avoid stains, it is a good idea to have your flagstone properly sealed once it is installed.
10. Choose a Matte Finish Sealer for Your Flagstone: It is best to choose a sealer with a matte finish to help maintain the natural beauty of your stones.
11. Re-Seal Flagstone Annually: The Landscapingnetwork.com recommends that you re-apply the sealer every year to protect the stone and help it keep its colour over time.
12. Sweep Your Flagstone: You should regularly sweep your flagstone to remove loose dirt and plant debris. If these sit too long on your stones, they can cause stains.
13. Clean Stains Off Flagstone: You can use bleach or muriatic acid diluted with water to remove any stains or mold on your flagstone. You could also purchase a cleaner designed for flagstone from your local home improvement store.
14. Rinse Off Chemicals From Flagstone Immediately: According to Landscapingnetwork.com you should make sure you rinse off any chemicals used for cleaning or that may get spilled on your stones, especially acids, as soon as possible to prevent damage.
15. Adjust Shifted Patio Stones: If your flagstone was installed without mortar and they shift, you can simply lift the shifted stones and add more sand underneath to adjust them.
16. Re-grout Damaged Flagstone: If your flagstone was installed with mortar and it has been damaged by winter freezing and thawing, you will need to remove the damaged mortar with a chisel or screwdriver and replace it with fresh mortar.
17. Remove Standing Water From Flagstone: It is helpful to brush away any standing water or excessive condensation with a squeegee as standing water can cause weathering and mineral build up.
18. Inspect For Cracks in Firebox Bricks: As the cooler fall weather approaches, it is the perfect time to get your fireplace ready to use once again. Inspect your firebox regularly to see if you have any cracked or damaged bricks, and if so, have them replaced before using your fireplace again.
19. Inspect the Mortar in Your Fireplace: If you notice that any of the mortar around the bricks in your firebox have begun to deteriorate, it will need to be tuckpointed as soon as possible.
Need a Masonry Repair? Contact Royal Masonry
The experts at Royal Masonry are experienced in repairing and building retaining walls, garden walls, patios, and many other masonry projects. We work with brick, flagstone, concrete, paving stones, concrete blocks, and more. Our team has been operating in the Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, and Guelph areas for many years. Contact us if you have a repair project and we will provide you with a free estimate. All our work is guaranteed.