Monday, November 3, 2008

Dear Mr Mason

I looked up the ingredients in the Quikrete Mason Mix Type S mortar you used; it's 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 parts masonry sand, 1/2 part hydrated lime, 1 part Portland cement (by volume). There is not nearly enough lime. It's also the second hardest mortar you can buy. I've found examples of Type S mortar dried and cured, and it is grey, not white.

I'm concerned about the effect that this hard mortar will have on my brick. I'm also disappointed; I had several bids done on the house, including one by a man who wanted to use a modern mortar (such as you finished the job with). His price for the house was $600 to $800. We decided that paying the extra money was worth it to us to have the integrity of the brick ensured. Of course, that price didn't include the patching of the bricks, which does look beautiful and I could see took work to look as good as it does. I'm not seriously concerned about the chemical composition of the patches, either, as they will simply pop off if it is unsuitable.

I'm wondering what we should do about this. As it stands, I'm looking at spending next spring chipping out all of the Type S mortar and replacing it with proper mortar (and hoping that the freezing/thawing over the winter doesn't hurt my bricks first).

Thank you for your concern on this issue; I'll wait to hear from you before I send payment.

Sincerely,
Tiny Old House

8 comments:

Robj98168 said...

LOL You go girl- My contractor would get phone calls from me - same mode- next day he wiould be on the job assuring me things will get done. Have I mentioned I hate contractors? They should all run for office- lying sonsabitches they are already qaulified

Di said...

Good for you for letting him know what a mess he made of the job. I'd be a nervous wreck letting someone work on my house; thankfully the only thing we've had to hire out so far was skimcoating (and that to a friend we trusted!). I hope things turn out well for you...

Jayne said...

Good letter. Very tactful. I can imagine what you really wanted to say, and I commend your restraint. :)

Why S? said...

You must be fit to be tied. Good luck with the situation.

ROXY said...

You tell him girlfriend!! Tactful and to the point! Well put!

Larry said...

Let us know what happens.

Richard said...

Yeah, i hate working with people who really don't know what they are doing and act like it is YOU who are in the dark.

Good luck, and GIVE US UPDATES! ;)

Fred said...

Sorry to hear this happened. I'm sure the mason will be too if he reads your blog. Sorry I haven't been around lately - having trouble just keeping up with our own diggs. But thanks for posting all about existing mortar and the links. I just learned that mortar is supposed to be a sacrificial element in an old building! I hope you'll be able to recover from this mishap, and hopefully the mason will do the rework for free.