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Brick arch and modern lintel need repair

Discussion in 'Building' started by wig, 9 Apr 2009.

  1. wig

    wig

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    I vaguely remember that this forum (diynot.com) is linked to usenet (newsgroups) is this true? Is this a standalone internet forum or do posts/replies appear in/come from usenet?


    Onto my question,

    I'm looking at a house to buy, and it has UPVC french doors onto a
    patio above the doors is a brick arch lintel something like this one,
    similar width and shallow angle 4 - 5 feet.

    [​IMG]

    In the centre of the arch is a narrow keystone made of stone not
    brick. a block of 6 or 7 bricks has
    dropped by atleast 5mm leaving a gap above them, this in turn has caused cracks in the mortar joints (stone construction) above the brick arch. On the inside of the doors the wall is covered and didn't appear to be cracked, I imagine it has an horizontal timber lintel behind the plaster.

    Upstairs in the room above, an internal wall crack has developed from
    below the windowsill to the floor, has been filled but has since opened again and is now 1mm wide.

    I'd like to keep the brick arch, but can someone tell me if it can be repaired (by a professional builder) and what would be the process of doing it? and approximate cost (what you would expect to pay).

    ***********************

    On the same elevation this time the kitchen door and window onto the same patio....

    There used to be a pantry or some sort of groundfloor extention which extended to the rear of the building, so originally there was no window just a door from the main building into the extension. They have removed the pantry/extention completely, left the doorway to become an external UPVC door, but they added a window opening next to the doorway, above which they installed a horizontal modern metal lintel. And the stonework of this side of the house is going along the metal lintel.

    Because the metal lintel is horizontal it makes it look unnatural - if you know what I mean - the stones are just being held up by thin air - no visible lintel. This opening including the window is about 7 - 8 feet wide, at one end there are some cracks appearing from above the top corner of the doorway. This makes me wonder if the lintel installed is not up to the job? Possibly it is bowing, but I did not think to check for that.

    The load on this kitchen lintel must be quite substantial, there is a bedroom window above it, but I have counted what I reckon to be 10 - 11 m^2 of stone-wall (which is atleast 18inchs thick) above the lintel, however presumably the internal side of the lintel is going to be bigger and stronger.

    There's no supporting column between the door and the window just a UPVC frame.

    I don't like this type of lintel because it looks unnatural. What are my options here? I could for example have a
    supporting column built between the door and the window to support the lintel, but this would need a new smaller window to be installed and would reduce light.

    Alternatively, if necessary I could install a new lintel, but I'd like one that looks the part - any suggestions on the types of lintel I could have, capable of spanning 7 - 8 feet, and which would look like it was there since the Victorian age? (probably impossible to achieve?) How about a huge oak beam?

    Obviously I couldn't use a single brick arch, the span is too wide. I could maybe reduce the size of the window and install 2 brick arches above the door and the window. But as I said before would require a new window and would reduce light.

    Thanks for suggestions/advice, sorry no picture. Maybe I should ask a builder to go to the house and give me a quote for the work? Of the two lintels I definately get the impression that the french doors brick arch is the more serious problem.
     
  2. stuart45

    stuart45

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    A brick arch can be repaired. The only method that I have ever used is to take down the brickwork and rebuild it. However some bricklayers will jack it up on the turning piece and wedge slate in the cracks and re-point. This is a quicker method.
     
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  4. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    Sorry, what is the question? :confused:

    Anyway, what a lovely terrace spoiled by the awful painted bricks and the hideous plastic door.

    This is one of the reason we have planning laws, but it's a shame that things like this aren't covered :cry:
     
  5. wig

    wig

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    Hi,

    The questions are,

    How do you repair a brick arch which is slipping, and how much do you think a builder would cost?

    Do you think there is a problem with the modern lintel?
    What would you do to repair it or increase it's strength?

    Is there a Victorian lintel design which would span 7 - 8 feet, on the ground floor, external face of a (big) house? (much bigger than the small terrace house pictured).


    re: painted bricks, unfortunately people across the whole of UK ruin terraces like this by painting the bricks, and worse putting fake stone cladding to the front (I never understand that) or by rendering, pebble dashing the front.
     
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  7. stuart45

    stuart45

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    Without a photo or knowing which lintel it is difficult to say if there is a problem. You can buy cast stone lintels which can be used in conjunction with a load bearing lintel.
     
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