Tuckpointing is the process of repairing a mortar joint in a masonry wall. Wind and moisture are the major enemies of masonry mortar joints. These factors cause the joints to crack and break up, then damaged mortar is washed out over time; bricks may even come loose and fall out of the wall if the damaged joints are not repaired. Without properly filled joints, the masonry structure is subjected to moisture buildup, affecting the durability and stability of the structures.
In most cases, the most well-built masonry walls will require tuckpointing every 15-20 years in a wetter region with possible severe weather conditions like Chicago (due to weather deterioration). Tuckpointing is done by grinding out mortar joints using electrical grinders with advanced dust collecting systems. After this, mortar joints are brushed and rinsed clean before applying new pre-hydrated mortar into the joints. In the end, the mortar joints are tooled to match the already existing joints on the structure.
83 Masonry uses only prehydrated mortar for all tuckpointing projects. Prehydrated mortar is premixed 90 minutes before use to reduce the amount of shrinkage. Mortar that shrinks less creates tighter joints which in turn leads to increase structural integrity and esthetics.