I am working on a Victorian 1880 terraced house 2 up 2 down plus basement.
The outside has been heavily rendered and I am not sure if that was to
straighten things up or to disguise / hide things.
I am fitting the lower room as a kitchen and need to provide ducting from an
internal back wall where the cooker will be to an outside vent which will
exit immediately over a small replacement window approx 3 ft wide. The
ducting is to be slid through the vent site between the plaster ceiling
board and the upstairs floor borads because luckily the joists run along
from window to back wall.
I started to remove the rendering, which seemed quite thick, and discovered
a line of bricks laid on end. I expected to see some sort of lintel. These
bricks must be the lintel in some way unless they " finish " the wall at
this point and the builders rely upon the window frame as a support. Is that
The bricks on end are not well mortared in and as the line goes to the right
they are not vertical, and almost loose. I wonder if movement took place
when the window was replaced and the heavy rendering was used to bind it all
Is it safe?
Apart from the horrors that could befall us from the above I need to know if
it is safe to drill and chop a hole through the top half of two of these
bricks where they join the wall to make access for the ducting and venting
fixture.Its a solid wall, no cavity, would I expect to find a lintel on the
internal part of the wall??
The ducting is fairly vital as there is no natural ventilation apart from
the window and as the ceiling is lower than normal a filter system would be
Any thoughts advice most welcome.
Typically, the lintel is a brick arch on the outer skin and a
piece of timber on the inner skin. A course or two above will
have headers (bricks length-wise through the wall) to keep the
two skins well tied together at this point. This would be
inherent in flemish bond anyway, but in flemish garden wall
bond (which is nothing to do with garden walls), there are
fewer headers and some extras may be deliberately positioned
in this area.
It's not a good idea to damage the structure of the arch,
particularly if the mortar isn't in a good state to start
with. The arch might drop out.
[email address is not usable -- followup in the newsgroup]
Thank you Andrew for the info.
We have found wood used in internal walls so that would make sense.
If it ever was an arch it had very little shape to it unless the window guys
altered it somehow.
Is there any form of preformed lintel you can get to add support to it as
soon the window will need replacing and that alone may cause damage.
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