I live in a 107 year old brick townhouse. Recently after removing some old
drywall, I noticed that the mortar in the basement walls is very sandy. In
some areas it is damp and in others it deteriorates like dust.
What may have caused this problem? What should I used to repoint the bricks?
A lot of those bricks are fragile, and the mortar needs
to be the weak link, so that cracks will appear in the mortar
line rather than the bricks. So you need to be dealing with
a high lime content mortar, I'll bet.
I suggest learning a lot more about how and why it was done
before doing or having anything done. Here's a start.
As Mehan suggests, I think it is rising damp and older mortar without
Check the BIA web site Tech Notes carefully before you or a mason
Again, as Mehan suggests, too much cement and not enough lime can
cause long term problems.
Tech Notes also has good advice for preparing mortar for easy
This is based on recent personal experience.
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