The process of repointing is renewing the mortar joints in buildings and structures, mostly brickwork and stone. Over time, weathering and decay causes openings/gaps in the joints allowing the undesirable ingress of water. Water entering through these voids can cause significant damage through freeze and thaw cycles. Salt dissolution and movement leave the fašade or outside wall exposed, rapidly speeding up the ageing process. If addressed in the early stage the right methods of repointing and brick restoration can return the building/structures to their full potential.
All the mortar in most cases does not need to be removed from a building during the repointing process, although it is popular for the aesthetics. New mortar can be made to the color and texture of existing mortar to tie them in.
The repointing process begins by removing damaged pointing to a depth slightly more than the width of the joint, or to the point where a solid mortar has been reached. Depths greater than 3 or 4 cm would be filled in several times, allow the mortar to cure for at least 24 hours. The joint profile would be as rectangular as possible so as to allow the new pointing mortar ample opportunity to bond with the masonry .Removal of old mortar between joints is done carefully to avoid damage to masonry. Very old buildings with soft materials, such as old brick, removing by hand is often the most effective way to avoid damage. Cement mortar is usually removed with a grinder, taking care not to damage the brickwork.
Only during the last few decades has empirical testing provided a scientific understanding of its remarkable durability.
The term 'hydraulic' means to 'harden under water'There are three strength grades for natural hydraulic lime, laid down in the European Norm EN459; NHL2, NHL3.5 and NHL5.
We would recommend and always use- The Traditional Lime Company ( is the sole Irish importer of Chaux & Enduits de St. Astier Natural Hydraulic Limes. This is a range of Natural Hydraulic Limes which imparts plasticity, elasticity, strength, low shrinkage and early frost resistance to a mortar. ) traditionallime.com
We offer a range of repointing techniques to suit your home, have a look at our examples of tuck pointing, wiggan, weatherstruck, strap and flush pointing. These methods all have their own attributes and aesthetics but we take great care to preserve and conserve in old structures and therefore will advise the right method statements where applicable.