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How Much Does It Cost to Have a Brick Wall or Chimney Tuckpointed?

Low
$250
Average Cost
$500
High
$1,000
(tuckpointing a 20 sq.ft. wall plus cleaner and electric grinder)

Get free estimates from Masonry Contractors near you
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How Much Does It Cost to Have a Brick Wall or Chimney Tuckpointed?

Low
$250
Average Cost
$500
High
$1,000
(tuckpointing a 20 sq.ft. wall plus cleaner and electric grinder)

Get free estimates from Masonry Contractors near you
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Tuckpointing is an improvement/rehabilitation of existing mortar joints in masonry walls. Fresh mortar is tucked into the joints to replace old and crumbling mortar, or to decorate the wall. For purposes of decoration color is added to mortar that is shaped into a thin strip.

Tuckpointing can also be purely decorative where homeowners want to improve the look of their brick walls. When done properly, tuckpointing provides a strong and waterproof mortar joint matching the original appearance of mortar joints. In most cases mortar joints take an average 10-20 years before they need repair. So walls can take as much time before requiring tuckpointing for purposes of repair. 

 A 20 sq.ft. wall will cost around $500 to tuckpoint under normal conditions.

Updated:

Brick Tuckpointing Cost by Project Range

Low
$250
Brushing a 20 sq.ft. wall
Average Cost
$500
Tuckpointing a 20 sq.ft. wall plus cleaner and electric grinder
High
$1,000
20 sq.ft. chimney plus color and extras

Labor

You need professionals to carry out the tuckpointing job well. Different contractors will quote differently depending on their experience and expertise but costs lie anywhere between $3 and $7 for the first 10 feet height of the walls where much scaffolding 1 is not needed. Beyond 5 feet high, the cost increases significantly to around $10 per square feet.  

One mason working at an average rate of 10 sq.ft per hour should be able to complete a 20 sq.ft wall in 2 hours for a cost of average $100. Places like chimneys are difficult to reach due to a lot of climbing involved, and cost more usually twice. Tuckpointing a 20 sq.ft. area of chimney wall can cost $200 and take around 4 hours for one mason.

There are different stages involved in tuckpointing that influence the cost. First is the removal of old/deteriorated mortar 2 to the desired depth, usually ¼ inch to ¾ inch. After grinding out old mortar 2 to required depth, the new mortar 2 is tucked into the joints using a pointing trowel.

Hand Tuckpointing vs Electric Grinder

Most labour in tuckpointing consists in grinding out deteriorated mortar to the required depths in joints. Established contractors who already have electric grinders can lower cost by around 20%. Individual handymen can do small sections of walls with use of chisel and hammer. If job will probably take 1 to few hours, hiring an electronic grinder will be more expensive than just doing the work with manual tools. To hire an electric grinder costs between $50 and $200 per day depending on area.

Materials

Different materials have varied cost implications on a tuckpointing project. Ordinary portland cement is cheaper while using lime or caulk 3 is 10%-15%more expensive . Where tuckpointing is done for decoration, colors can be added that subsequently add to the cost of tuckpointing the wall. Decorations escalate the cost by around 30% of the normal cost. Other materials include masonry cleaners for scrubbing dirt from bricks and diamond blades for grinders. These take up around 10% to 20% of the project cost. Materials in total make up around 50% of tuckpointing cost with labour taking the remaining 50%.

Repairs

Sometimes there are minor repairs to be done before the actual tuckpointing. They impact the final tuckpointing costs by large margins.

DefectActionCost
Broken bricksReplacement$5-$10 per sq.ft. depending on extend
Wall CracksRemoval and replacement of full sections of walls$5-$10 per sq.ft.
Full depth mortar 2 deteriorationRepointing$10 per sq.ft.
Deteriorated brick surfaceBrushing$1-$3 per sq.ft.



Enhancement and Improvement Costs

  • Even where your home walls have intact mortar 2 joints, you can add an aesthetic value to the brickwork with decorative tuck-pointing. Lime-based mortar 2 can be used to frame the bricks (preferably red) with white lines to create a pleasant contrast. Decorative work costs around $7-$10 per sq.ft, and roughly $140-$200 for a 20 sq.ft wall.
  • Other options are to add caulk 3 in the joints next to windows hence improving the wall’s cosmetic value. These decorative measures will add the cost slightly, especially by 5% to 10%. The services of an experienced painter costs around $20-$35 per hour, so to hire a painter to neatly add caulk 3 to the joints on a 20 sq. ft wall section will cost $40-$70 for maximum 2 hours needed to complete the job.
  • Chimney caps wear down over time and when they wear through your chimney is exposed to potential water damage both inside and out. A new chimney cap will cost you between $300 and $500 depending on the size and location of your chimney.

Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
glossary term picture Scaffolding 1 Scaffolding: A temporary structure used during construction/maintenance/painting projects to raise and support workers (or one worker), required materials, and equipment
glossary term picture Mortar 2 Mortar: A mixture of Portland cement or lime or a combination of both, sand, and water used to bind bricks, stones, and concrete masonry units together
glossary term picture Caulking 3 Caulk: A chemical sealant used to fill in and seal gaps where two materials join, for example, the tub and tile, to create a watertight and airtight seal. The term "caulking" is also used to refer to the process of applying this type of sealant

Cost to have a brick wall or chimney tuckpointed varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

Updated:
The information provided by our cost guides comes from a great variety of sources, including specialized publications and websites, cost studies, U.S. associations, reports from the U.S. government, contractors and subcontractors, material suppliers, material price services, and other vendor websites. For more information, read our Methodology and sources.
A repaired brick wall by tuckpointing
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Cost to have a brick wall or chimney tuckpointed varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

The information provided by our cost guides comes from a great variety of sources, including specialized publications and websites, cost studies, U.S. associations, reports from the U.S. government, contractors and subcontractors, material suppliers, material price services, and other vendor websites. For more information, read our Methodology and sources.