In buildings, lintels serve as structural supports. A horizontal beam is installed over that opening to carry the structure’s weight over a door or window. There are a bunch of materials for linings, including bricks, concrete, timber, and metal. Lintel reinforcement provides extra strength at weak points – damaged lintels need to be repaired.
How do you find that a lintel should be repaired?
Identifying the source of cracks in a wall before repairing them is crucial. When cracks occur above doors and windows, it is essential to look at the lintel first.
Repairing cracked boot lintels or arches without reinforcing the brickwork will not be enough to prevent further damage. The brickwork can be made into a load-carrying beam by inserting stainless steel bars into the masonry above the opening. To achieve this, two helical rods must be inserted into two distinct mortar joints above the opening, and then the helical rods must be repointed to conceal the bars.
If the lintel is to be repaired is located above the first brick course, cut a slot beneath the arch’s crown in the horizontal mortar bed. The space must be cut to the appropriate depth to fit each wall’s thickness. Flush the joint with plenty of clean water to remove loose debris or mortar. Use a pointing gun to load the anchoring grout according to instructions. Once two-thirds of the grout has been pumped into the slot, close the slot. Install a helical bar above each window or door, extending it 500mm beyond both.
The excess grout should be cleared off the helical bar after the grout has been completely covered. After introducing the first bar, insert a second bar at least 10mm beyond it and half its depth. Ensure that the bar and grout are firmly packed into the slot, approximately 10mm from the surface. If the vertical crack is filled with colored mortar, the load-carrying capacity will be increased. Repeat the entire process of four to twelve courses higher than the first level.
Damaged & failed lintels: Identifying the problem
There is a high probability that lintels will fail when the surrounding masonry is cracked vertically. Brickwork cracks in the vertical direction are the most obvious signs of a fallen lintel.
From the top corners of the windows, vertical cracks will typically appear diagonally up and in. Lintels fail when they bow downward, which results in cracks and bulging masonry, as brickwork bends inwards and cracks upwards. Lintels that fail shouldn’t have damages that exceed the width of windows and doors.
A lintel’s failure most commonly occurs due to problems with the lintel, like corrosion. The structural movement of the walls or the foundation may cause lintels to crack or blow. To rule out more serious underlying issues, consult a structural engineer.
Hardwood window replacements, usually with PVC windows, are joint for lintel problems. Make sure the lintels are in good shape before installing new windows. Homeowners should be worried if there are cracks at this stage. Before you start removing and installing windows, you’ll need to reinforce (or replace) the lintel.
Lintels made of brick can be repaired easily with helical spiral bars. Lintels made of brick can be fixed easily with helical spiral bars. There’s a slot above an existing lintel where these stainless steel bars are bonded. A highly effective repair with minimal disruption is achieved with this method.
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