We’ve been keeping costs down with concurrent or simultaneous works. As discussed in the previous blog, we had a wood burning stove installed. An incidental cost of this is for the scaffolding. We therefore managed to get a number of jobs that required scaffolding done at the same time – external painting of all the front external windows and window reveals and having the whole of the front re-pointed. It just takes a bit of effort juggling contractors!
Re-pointing is not just important for aesthetic reasons. Its also important to protect brickwork and is even more important with insulated walls. Traditionally pointing was lime based and essentially sacrificial – its a lot easier to re-point than to repair bricks. Lime based mortar draws moisture out of the brickwork and will gradually get damaged and crumble away, especially during very cold snaps. The bricks are kept dry and importantly in one piece. Pointing that has been replaced with concrete based mortar tends to be harder and less porous than the surrounding bricks or stone and can have serious consequences. This is often seen with porous stone where the mortar remains and the bricks or stone have eroded significantly.
As mentioned, its even more important with insulated walls as the walls are colder and so will tend to hold more moisture during the winter.