How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Brick Wall per Square Foot?
Masons typically charge about $20 to $40 per square foot, depending on the extent of the damage, the quality of the brick, and the structure’s integrity. Some masons have a minimum fee, which is usually between $200 to $400.
How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Brick Wall Yourself?
Brick is one of the most durable materials out there, and when cared for and repaired correctly, it can last a lifetime (and often much longer). Because masonry requires years of apprenticeship and training—and often includes structural elements—brick repair is best left to a masonry professional. A mason will bring the level of expertise necessary to repair your brick wall. When hiring a mason, make sure they are licensed, insured, and bonded.
But it is possible to repair a brick wall yourself to save some money. Your main expense for minor brick wall repairs will be the mortar, which will cost about $30 to cover 75 square feet.
Brick Wall Repair Cost Breakdown
Type of Brick
Different areas of your home may use different kinds of brick. For instance, the brick used on your fireplace might be made of appropriately-named fire bricks, while an exterior wall of your home is likely made of brick veneer. Generally speaking, the more expensive the brick, the more repairs will cost per square foot. If your project requires a lot of bricks, your mason may be able to secure a bulk order discount.
Extent of Damage
The amount of brick that needs to be repaired or replaced will factor into the final cost. Even if you only have a small area that needs to be repaired, have it addressed immediately; minor problems with brick walls can turn into big problems very quickly.
Your Mason’s Experience and Rate
Because masonry is a skilled trade, masons with many years of experience will likely charge more than those who are newer to the profession. A brick mason has gone through specific training to learn how to work with this kind of material. A more experienced and established mason might also have a higher minimum fee. Make sure to review several contractors’ references and ask about their specific experience with the kind of brick repair you are looking to have done, so you hire the best mason for your project.
Repairs higher than 10 feet off the ground will cost more than those below; expect a 10% to 25% mark-up for hard-to-reach repairs where the mason may require the use of scaffolding.
How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Brick Wall by Type of Repair?
The cost of removing and replacing a few bricks is much different from fully restoring a brick wall.
To repair some cracks in 10 or fewer bricks, expect to pay $500 or less. If several areas are cracked, the cost will likely run between $750 and $1,000.
To remove old, cracked mortar and fill in the spots with fresh mortar, your mason will employ either tuckpointing or repointing. Tuckpointing is when you remove a part of the aging mortar, fill in the joints with new mortar that is colored the same—or close—to the color of the brick, then apply putty in a contrasting color in the center of the joint. Repointing is replacing the old mortar with new mortar. Typically, motor repair costs $10 to $20 per square foot; for a 20-square-foot wall, expect to spend $300 to $500.
Spalling refers to the appearance brick gets when it has been exposed to years of colder, harsher climates, poor installation, non-breathable sealants, or high-pressure water. To fix spalling bricks, a mason will need to remove and replace them. This can cost $900 to $1,200 on average (if there are only a few sections to repair) but can run as high as $20,000 (rebuilding large sections of a wall).
Bowing Brick Wall Repair
If your brick wall is bowing for whatever reason—like water damage or foundation issues—you should address it immediately, as it can lead to structural failure. These repairs can be costly, ranging from $7,500 to $40,000 for 100 square feet. You may have to factor in additional costs to address the source of the problem, such as:
Tree root removal: If tree roots are pushing up against your foundation, causing your wall to bow, you’ll need to get them removed, which will cost $400 to $1,200.
Soil pressure: Clogged gutters can lead to a buildup in soil pressure; cleaning your gutters will cost you $120 to $225.
Structural issues: You’ll need to consult with a local structural engineer about bowing resulting from a large movement like a settling foundation or disruption to other supportive elements.
A full restoration project, typically done on historic homes, includes removing spalling bricks, fixing cracks, and replacing other bricks, if necessary. Given the extent of this work, expect to pay $5,000 to $20,000 or more for the total project.