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First of all, let’s address the issue of pointing – what exactly is it?

Pointing is the external part of the mortar between bricks, put in place to create better surface run-off for rainwater and fewer gaps and ledges of stone for soil and thus plant life to seed and develop. Over time, this pointing can decay – whether gradually through weathering, or due to poor maintenance. Imagine you have a stone-wall with guttering at the top which becomes blocked, so water is able to overflow and seep into the bricks. When this freezes, the moisture will expand causing damage to the masonry, and can blow out the stone. Not good. This is referred to as 'freeze-thaw weathering'.

In this case, the wall would need repointing, as this renews the mortar in the gaps, meaning they are protected from the dangers of undesired water ingress. As you can imagine, this is very important TLC for your buildings. But it’s essential to choose a good team to undertake this practice, otherwise it could be more labour intensive than you’d bargained on, due to unsightly or shoddy workmanship and faster degradation rates of their work.

WallWalkers have repointed a huge variety of structures, from Rievaulx Abbey to Tyndale Monument. And, when it comes to pointing, we specialise in the use of lime mortar mixes that blend with the building's natural history and character.

The idea of stone masonry is that, when moisture enters (which it ultimately will), it should be able to escape as water or water vapour with as much ease as possible. Because of the porous nature of lime, the transition is made far simpler. Cement mortars tend to alter the way in which water acts in a wall, meaning moisture becomes trapped. So when the temperature drops and the stone freezes there is the danger of huge amounts of trouble occurring, such as stone being blown out which drastically damages the surrounding masonry.

Sometimes we are called in for repointing due to the fact that other companies have carried out the work with cement-based mortar, and sometimes the natural weathering of time (or poor maintenance that exacerbates damp masonry), is the culprit. Either way, now is the time to protect your buildings by solving any water ingress issues – when the colder months start and water turns to ice the freeze-thaw weathering could blow out the stonework, requiring extensive and very costly repairs. So don’t delay – get lime pointing today!

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