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Cracks in New Brick


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This house had a lot of vertical cracks in the brick face. Is it cause for great concern? I am thinking freeze/thaw will wreck the brick. Thoughts?

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I have seen brick like that with a glazed type surface with cracks. I can't say that I have noticed any freeze/thaw damage, but bricks vary as does weather exposure.

BTW, is the stone ruins look supposed to be attractive?

Down here they say, "There's just no accountin' fer taste."

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I would say something like this

"Many of the bricks on this home have visible cracks, the exact cause of the cracks is not known but it could be a defect in the brick or even mishandling when it was being installed. A concern is that water will enter the cracks, freeze and expand causing additional damage to the brick. This condition will not improve with time, it will only worsen. The builder should contract the brick manufacturer or a masonry expert for additional instructions on what needs to be done".

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In the first photo, the brick is broken. Cletus was probably too enthusiastic setting it to the line. There is no crack above or below the brick, the mortar joints are intact. It's really just two small bricks.

In the second and third photos, the surface is crazed, there's no visible cracks above or below the crazing and no sign anywhere that there's been some structural movement to crack the bricks. The look may be intended or it may be a defect. I'd advise my client to contact the manufacturer to ascertain what the bricks are supposed to look like.

Or, I'd be so shocked from the overall ugly that I'd forget to mention the condition.

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BTW, is the stone ruins look supposed to be attractive?

Actually, yes, with the emphasis on the "supposed to be" part. It's hard to explain how stuff happens in Chicago, but I'll try.....

Think of an otherwise normal and reasonable person that wants to build a house. Now, remove their frontal lobe, reasoning ability, and provide relentless exposure to countless misguided efforts to recreate Olde Worlde Charm by mimicking medieval design elements translated into stylistic decorations on 25 x 125 infill city lots. It has stuff on it that looks like other stuff. It must be architecture then, right? Mission accomplished.

As far as the cracked brick, Scott's got the right idea, but too many words. Way too many for someone building something this ****ing ugly.

My knee jerk is some moron is using a *too hard* bag mix for soft brick. We got dweebs in Chicago that use S because it's "Structural", so it must be stronger, and stronger is better. Seriously.

It should be a soft sandy limey mix, maybe Type O. The soft and already partly cracked brick is moving around and the mud isn't. Or something like that.

Incompatible mortar. It's epidemic.

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Lousy head joints. That'll mess up stuff.

The bricks look like those fake clinker things; they're crappy brick to start, they use them to go with the goofy stone ruins look, like the whole thing was put together by northern Euro-serfs in the Dark Ages.

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