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Character With Brick And Stone
Want to add some instant character to your house? Just a little brick or stone can make a dramatic change, bring out the patina of years past and offer a sense of solidity. Different colorations allow for a tremendous variety of looks.
Brick and stone are among the sturdiest of building products: they stand the test of time. Little maintenance is needed, especially if the materials were laid correctly to begin with.
Specialized mortar treatments will enhance any exterior wall, decorative mailbox or fireplace surround. If you use brick for a path or driveway, wet mortar isn't necessary; dry sand or similar materials are usually a better choice. That way, if you have to replace a brick or two, you can do it inexpensively. It also makes it easier to deal with any problems with electrical wiring or sprinkler plumbing that may lie underneath or next to the brick.
If you add on to your old house and want to try to match a brick exterior, you'll have some choices to make. Chances are, the old brick manufacturer isn't still around. It may be difficult to try to find a good match. You can try to offset the addition a foot or two to play down the delineation. Or you can pull some bricks here and there out of the original exterior to use on the addition. Fill in the old spots with new bricks, and the two sides blend nicely.
Salvage bricks - like Clinker Brick and yellow-hued Chicago Brick - can be expensive. Manufacturers now make tumbled brick, which looks aged and is a less expensive option in Somerset County, Maryland.