Repair Crumbling Chimney Mortar and Remove Moss
LESLIE: Russell’s next up on The Money Pit, from Ohio. And you’ve got a question about your chimney. What’s going on?
RUSSELL: What I have is I had some moss growing on the shingles around the chimney. On the – like I think it’s on the north side of the chimney. And the other problem with the chimney is some of the mortar between the bricks looks like water may have gotten behind it, froze it out, broke it out. I was wondering if that mortar is a job that I can handle myself or do I need to get a pro to retouch (ph) point that.
TOM: You know, chimneys sticking up off the roof there into the environment do really take a lot of abuse. So the things that you’re talking about here, Russ, are not unusual. It definitely is totally a do-it-yourself job. What you need to do is this.
LESLIE: Well, as long as you feel comfortable up on the roof.
TOM: Well, good point. You need to get up there and scrape out the loose mortar. Now, if the bricks are coming loose, you’re going to have to make a judgment as to how comfortable you feel taking apart part of this chimney. But you simply mix up a new mortar mix. You can buy some QUIKRETE at the store – premixed mortar; add some water; and go ahead, just put that back together.
LESLIE: You want the consistency of peanut butter.
TOM: Yes, the consistency of peanut butter.
LESLIE: Don’t make it too runny.
TOM: Not the consistency of jelly. (chuckling) The consistency of peanut butter.
Now, in terms of the moss that’s growing around the shingles, what you want to use there is a bleach solution – some water and bleach – and spray it on there; let it sit; and then scrub it away. That’s very common to grow on the north …
LESLIE: Especially on the north side.
TOM: On the north side. Exactly.
RUSSELL: Oh, OK. And that QUIKRETE, is that just the regular stuff I’d use to patch my driveway or a particular …
TOM: Well, it’s a different formulation. The mortar formulation might be different than the concrete formulation. Usually the stuff that they use for driveways has an epoxy component to it which makes it stickier.
RUSSELL: Oh, OK.
TOM: So you want to buy the mortar mix.
RUSSELL: Alright, thank you.