Posting this so that it might help another house restorer...
The 1890's era rental house that we purchased here in Cincy had a room
on the second floor in which the plaster had fallen off of a chimney
and the brick underneath had corroded. It was generally a disgusting
mess. There also was a huge old stovepipe hole in the middle with a
rusted out piece of ductwork.
Suggestions to repair it ranged from screwing on concrete backerboard
or some kind of screening and then using joint compound.
I decided to replaster instead...after taking out the stovepipe and
surrounding bricks and replacing them. I used plaster mixed with water
and a little white vinegar to retard the fast drying time. Regular
plastic corner beads were attached on both sides so that the chimney
would again be square...just pushed gently into the plaster. Plaster
has the advantage of being able to be applied heavily...but dries
After covering the brick with approximately 1/2 inch of the stuff, I
used joint compound as a finish coat. It was time consuming but worth
Attaching stuff by drilling into the mortar would have been a real
headache...I feel that my solution is more authentic as well.
It looks great and is hard. I'll send photos if anyone is interested.
Oh, that chimney only functions as a vent for a water heater.
Dean in Cincy
You may have gotten away with your patch if the chimney was not used, but a
waterheater puts out a lot of moisture (it is the biggest energy user in
most houses, second only to a furnace if you have one) as it burns natural
gas, a plaster patch with plastic corner beads is a disaster waiting to
happen. The reason the brick and mortar were correded is the water vapour
has a lot of carbon dioxide in it making an acid which eats away at mortar,
and plaster. Fix it correctly and get a stainless steel liner.
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