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Old 03-31-2013, 10:14 PM   #1
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


I've got a brick flowerbed attached to the front of my home, and the wall of the flowerbed wall is two bricks thick, and it has weep holes every third brick, but I want to add more weep holes for better draining during heavy rains. Is the ideal way to do this with an air chisel? I've got a 40 gallon cheap Husky compressor, but I really don't know if its up to the job. How hard would this be to chisel out by hand? I'm not in a big hurry so I don't mind doing a couple a week or so. Would I have to chisel out the mortar on one side and then move to the inside of the flower bed to chisel the mortar on the second layer of bricks, or can I chisel it all the way through from the front side? Any advice or help is appreciated. Thanks.

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Old 03-31-2013, 10:33 PM   #2
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


I would drill holes vs putting a chisel to it.

Use a rotary hammer bit and don't push too hard. Let the bit do most of the work on the twist vs. the hammer.

If you don't want to do that, use a multi-tool with a masonry tip to it and be gentle as well.

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Old 04-01-2013, 05:52 AM   #3
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


1 more point - is this flowerbed waterproof'd on its entire interior ? hate to think you've got an above-grade pond against the home's very fine walls
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:47 AM   #4
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


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Originally Posted by itsreallyconc View Post
1 more point - is this flowerbed waterproof'd on its entire interior ? hate to think you've got an above-grade pond against the home's very fine walls
Oh no, it's just soil with a few plants, it drains away from the house. I just want to add a few more drains.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:21 PM   #5
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


Doubt it would be a difficult job even by hand. You'll find that the mortar comes out of the vertical joints far easier than it would from the horizontal.

If it's already got weepholes every 3rd brick, it's going to be all weepholes by the time you finish. Every 3rd in a flower bed should be OK. Could the problem be solved by improving the drainage material behind?

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Old 04-01-2013, 02:26 PM   #6
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


Hammer drill and masony bit and it will be a fast clean job.
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:04 PM   #7
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Chisel out mortar by hand?


It sounds like you have enough weep holes, how big are they? They may have just become plugged over time and you could just drill them out so they drained better. If they are too small, you may need to enlarge them. Whichever method you use, a hammer drill with a masonry bit should work just fine.

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