Building Homes or Extensions/Failing Bricks


Hello! We have a early 1900s single family brick home that had a 2 season enclosed porch added on (estimated age unknown) before we purchased the house. Recently we've noticed that some of the bricks appear to be crumbling alway at the base of the addition. I've attached a photo which might help explain the issue. I'm wonder what might be causing it, and what a temporary fix might be. I know long term it probably needs to get redone, but do you have any suggestions to prevent additional crumbling such as a sealant or other? Appreciate any suggestions! Thanks

Hi Reagan, it looks like there might be some water getting into that area which can over time cause the bricks to deteriorate.  The way the face of the bricks are shearing off, there might be some compression issues as well.  This could be caused from settling in the structure which is crushing the bottom bricks slowly.  If the problem is water related you can purchase a sealer at Home Depot or Lowes or your local hardware store.  A brick or paver seal can be applied and then re coated several times.  Follow manufacturers instructions.  If there is a settling issue it is probably being caused by the slab that was poured up to the brick.  It is hard to see if there was any kind of expansion joint between the slab and the brick.  The brick trying to slide by the slab due to settling is hitting the top of the slab causing the face to shear off.  It is possibly minor settling and can be monitored.  If the course of brick just above the landing begins to hit the landing and start deteriorating you should probably seek help from a structural engineer.  Otherwise, treat the area with sealer and keep an eye on the area for future deterioration and settling, I hope this info helps please feel free to write again as needed, Sincerely Bruce E.

Building Homes or Extensions

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Bruce E. Johnson


I can answer any construction related question in regards to carpentry, concrete, drywall, masonry, structural elements of any type of building, residential or commercial. Interior or exterior.


Custom Commercial and residential buildings. Churches, theaters, schools and auditoriums. Most recently I am working with the Catholic Church on several design build committees. I have a website related to scheduling and project supervision. Although my expertise is more related to multimillion dollar commercial, educational and theatrical projects my generous credentials in residential and remodelling construction make me a viable source of information regarding all forms of building questions.

©2016 All rights reserved.