Common Cracks in Brickwork
Thermal expansion failure cracking: These types of cracks are vertical and usually positioned lengthwise along walls. Thermal expansion failure cracking is caused by the thermal heating of a masonry wall that lacks proper control joints. Brick veneers generally expand once the sun beats down on them as a result of heat and without proper control joints, cracks usually develop.
Expansion due to steel: This is a type of crack that commonly appears over openings on a wall. The embedded steel located inside the masonry with the aim of providing support typically heats up once exposed to the sun, an expansion that usually leads to heaving of the masonry. Although both the steel and masonry heat up and expand, steel simply expands at a much faster rate when compared to the masonry.
Leaning or bulging wall cracks: A wall might lean, bulge, or bow due to pressure exerted on the back side of that particular wall. At times, such walls appear like they are either sinking or leaning. One of the common reasons why a wall might develop cracks as a result of bulging, leaning, or bowing is an improper tying of a structure behind the wall. Unfortunately, this type of cracks indicates one of the most severe types of problems regarding walls, which means they require immediate attention. It is also important to take extra care when repairing this kind of wall defect.
When it comes to the repair of any structural issue regarding a brick veneer, your best option is to contact a contractor. Evaluate the walls of your home any time you are outside to ensure such defects do not go unnoticed for extended periods. More resources can be found at the Shouldice Designer Stone website.