Homeowners, Family Members Useful During Material Removal

By: Vince Paxton

For those who live in a home with a brick exterior, there may come a time when it is necessary to put new brick out there for everyone to see. While this step is not often called for, there are times when replacing the mortar (tuck pointing) is simply not enough to bring the beautiful brick exterior back to its original status. It is at this point that the homeowner may have to "rebrick the house."

If the quality of the mortar and bricks was poor enough from the start that replacement is necessary years later, there may be no other choice. In recent years, some homeowners have chosen to install siding made from a new material instead of investing in new brick. But if the homeowner feels that only new brick will suffice for the home, it is time to start looking into the bricks that are available (and checking on costs too).

Gathering some basic information is a good first step: Get a good measurement for the overall size of the home, get a list of the color and quality of brick available from area suppliers, and spend a good amount of time talking with experts who could perform this task. While planning the brick replacement, the homeowner should make sure to include plans for windows and doors, soffit and other trim items. Having this information available will be more than useful. It will be absolutely necessary for a successful project.

For most homes with a brick exterior, the walls were completed before any trim was put in place (window and door trim, edge trim etc.). If this is the case, it will be necessary to carefully remove the trim before removal of the brick. As mentioned earlier, a plan that includes new brick should always include careful consideration of the trim. Removal of wood trim around windows and doors, for example, should be done very carefully if some of that trim is to be reused. Of course, if all new trim is in the works, the removal can proceed much more quickly. Keep in mind that wood on older homes will probably have to be replaced unless it is in perfect condition.

Replacement of brick exteriors (and other exterior materials) will also involve planning for careful removal of trim and masonry if there are arched areas above doors and windows. This step will involve attention to detail if the original appearance of the home is to be preserved. Of course, the brick and labor will account for most of the cost of the project. However, these special areas will add somewhat to the overall cost.

With many home renovation projects, the homeowner and family members may be able to take care of some of the labor (significantly reducing cost). However, this may not be possible with a project involving removal and reinstallation of brick. Many masonry/brick contractors will have their own crews and will prefer to do all the work themselves. However, sometimes the "demolition" steps can be performed by homeowners and family members to reduce the overall price. For example, family members may be able to remove wood trim, especially if it will not be reused. But the homeowner should be careful coordinate this work so that the structure is ready when the new brick arrives.

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Vince Paxton works principally for www.insidewoodworking.com , a web page about chain saws and electric chain saw. On his site you can come across his work on chain saws and chain saw reviews.

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