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  1. #1
    Kris N's Avatar
    Kris N Guest

    Default Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    The brick veneer on this 8 year old home has very unusual problem. Most of the bricks have white salt deposits that don't quite look like normal powdery efflorescence. Also, noticed several vertical cracks and chippage in the bricks [not along the mortar joints]. It is a SW grade brick and there is no evidence of any moisture on the interior dry wall. What is going on here? Too much moisture absorption? Defective brick? Any insight will be appreciated.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Honestly, looks like factory applied finish to resemble weathering. Note your lack of knowledge or familiarity with the product. Honesty, even if it makes us appear less, is definately more in the end result. do some internet searches for it, spend time researching and looking for it.
    I have been doing Home INspections for 15 years and still do extensive internet research on new things I find at many houses.
    It is due diligence and furthering your education.
    And if it was structurally sound leave it at that.
    The cracked bricks appear to have been installed that way. There is no way they would crack like that on their own
    And there is no effloressence in the grout joints indicating that it's not a water issue.
    I may be way off on this but it's just my opinion.
    What's yours?


  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Wayne might be right about this. I can't tell from the pics well enough. However his comment about the lack of erosion or signs at the mortar joints is a good indicator.
    Did you look around the tops of walls, window sills, and sides of windows for entry points or other signs?

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  4. #4
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    I agree with #2....


  5. #5
    Kris N's Avatar
    Kris N Guest

    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Thanks for your opinion. Actually, two things stood out which caused me to suspect water damage.

    1. White salt deposits, which were kind of soft and I could scrape them with hand. This is only on bricks on three sides of the home, which are exposed to weather. On the side which was protected due to adjacent building, there were no white deposits.

    2. Chippage seems to be along the mortar joints and most of them are in bright red color indicating that this happened after initial installation. Attached pictures show chippage I was referring to.

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  6. #6
    chris mcintyre's Avatar
    chris mcintyre Guest

    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Quote Originally Posted by Kris N View Post

    2. Chippage seems to be along the mortar joints and most of them are in bright red color indicating that this happened after initial installation.

    Actually "chippage" along the edges would tend to happen during the handling of the brick before installation.

    IMO the bright red color confirms what others have already said, that this is almost certainly the finish to the face of the brick, not efflorescence.

    This is what you typically see with efflorescence.

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    Last edited by chris mcintyre; 04-30-2011 at 06:23 PM. Reason: added picture

  7. #7
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    The bricks appear to be a "soft" variety. Very porous face and edges and seems to crack very easily. Not a good choice for exterior facing or exposed to the elements. Particularly bad for cold, damp climates.

    The brick face is harder than the edges and tends to absorb less moisture however, if the edges are not completely sealed with something, usually the mortar, the softer brick edges will soak up moisture and when it freezes, chip off or spall the face or edges.

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Some sort of "pre-aged" thin-brick material, similar to the Mutual Materials products?

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  9. #9
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    Could it be caused by snow blower discharge?

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES


  10. #10
    chris mcintyre's Avatar
    chris mcintyre Guest

    Default Re: Brick Veneer Problems - HELP

    If you look closely at the pictures especially this one, you can see that the mortar is on top of the chipped areas which could only happen if the damage occurred before they were layed.




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