What Is Pointing In Brickwork & Masonry?

  • 2 min read

It can be useful to familiarise yourselves with some of the more commonly used building and construction terms if you’re planning on having work done at home, so you can ask any and all questions you might have and gain a greater depth of understanding of what is being done to your house.

If you’re having masonry and brickwork carried out, you’re sure to hear the term ‘pointing’ being bandied around here and there. But what exactly is this and what does it actually do?

Quite simply, pointing is the term used to refer to the finish that lies between the stone or bricks used in the construction of your home. This will either be made from lime or cement, depending on how old your house is.

If pointing isn’t done properly, older buildings can sustain irreparable damage so it’s important that your contractors have a solid understanding of mortar joints and how they can impact the house itself.

Mortar has many functions, including preventing water penetration, but it also has to allow your walls to breathe and drain. It also has to be flexible enough to allow for the movement and settlement of the building. If walls are unable to breathe because the pointing won’t allow it, you will soon see your walls deteriorate.

When choosing a contractor, always ask to see examples of their work and if you’re not sure, question them about lime mortar and ask them to tell you how it’s made, where it comes from, how long it needs to set and so on… it will soon become clear if they know their stuff or not.

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