Landing New Construction Building Contractors
To those who look and listen, houses tell stories about their builders and occupants. Florida and the little boy across the street has a new puppy. I have rich memories of those summers spent mostly on the porch. Long gone are the days when masonry meant red clay brick and gray mortar only. If you’re cleaning it, however, you’d better know the difference.
This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook upgrades an old brick landing on a front entry with bluestone slabs. (See below …Tri State Construction – Landing Masonry Construction
The exterior of the building is skinned in brick and accented with ribbon window treatments outfitted with tinted glass and brushed aluminum trim. Sometimes, restoring and repairing your deck can be beneficial, but in other cases, building a new custom deck might be a better option.
But even clay masonries now vary enough in type to take particular procedures and products. Too late, the contractor discovered he was cleaning concrete brick, not clay brick. But between concrete and clay, and simulated and natural, are widely different tolerances for cleaner-strength and pressure-washer psi. Cleaning limestone or cast stone the same way you clean granite or sandstone can etch or bleach. Always test before overall cleaning. He got samples from the mason contractor and took them back to his shop. Select the box and move it up and change it’s width and height to make it fit under the deck and fill the space.
It’s also critical that the stoop not direct water to the house. Better yet, level the ground before beginning work on the stoop. It’s standard practice to leave a ¼” gap between each board of a double or triple tread for drainage. Choose a 2″ x 12″ piece of rot-resistant red cedar, pressure-treated pine, or redwood with as few knots as possible. Before laying the treads, use a level and check in several places to make sure the base for your new stoop is square and level.
If it’s in good condition, use it as a support for the bottom posts. If the slab is missing or in poor condition, remove it and pour a new slab. If there isn’t a concrete pad, pour concrete piers to support the stoop posts. Slide on the new post, making sure that it rests at least 1″ above ground level. Take into consideration the type of construction (wood or brick, for instance) and whether one material—concrete, wood, brick—dominates. Don’t clean too early, though — you could damage the joints.
Highland Masonry Construction
Use the right cleaner for the right job. The cleaner removed most of the stone’s surface-applied color, along with the excess mortar and job dirt. Chances are the masonry manufacturer will be glad to tell you. Since those days, advances in the manufacture of masonry and other construction materials have made use of raw acids, such as muriatic, very dangerous.
It can and has stained and etched nearly every type of masonry, landing many a contractor in a legal bed of thorns. Lots of water is one of the secrets to a great masonry clean-down. When the masonry pores are filled with water, the cleaner can’t soak in. Use more water to rinse the spent cleaner and dissolved mortar and job dirt off the wall. Weak rinsing can leave stains and residue. Clean bottom-to-top, and always keep lower areas wet to prevent streaking. The result was that reddish rundown from the cleaning soaked into the white cast stone, leaving nasty streaks. Unfortunately, the cleaning contractor was required to do the remedial cleaning at his own expense. Unlike many other types of cleaning, masonry clean-down begins at the bottom and works up. Keeping them wet stops rundown from penetrating. Water-saturated masonry is vulnerable to freeze/thaw damage. Instead, extend the dwell time of the properly diluted cleaning solution by 10 – 20 percent. Pre-wetting and rinsing with hot water also warms the surface and improves results. In cold weather, this means your wet cleaning window may only be a few hours around noon. If a limited cleaning window is impractical, enclose the work area with polyethylene and use space heaters to warm the masonry. This extends your workday and improves results. One final caution – warm weather test panels won’t work for cold weather cleaning. The masonry manufacturer, distributor, sales rep or masonry cleaner manufacturer are always happy to do all they can to help.
Brick Masonry Construction
Watch this video to know more about Brick Masonry Construction. Subject: Skill Development.