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New and Old Brick Openings
Old houses often need to have their windows upgraded, and brick openings are generally in need of updates to allow for new, modern, high efficiency windows to be installed. Many older houses in Toronto, Hamilton and the GTA have brick arches above their windows which was the original way bricklayers would structure a wall to allow for support above the area that the bricks are absent. Nowadays, we use steel lintels to support the weight. They are much easier to install than brick arches and result in less trim work for the window installers to complete around the window after it has been installed. The arch is often considered more aesthetic as it has a traditional masonry look, but the clean and sharp lines of steel lintel supported brick openings has a modern masonry appeal.
When altering a masonry opening on a house and changing the existing arch to a flat, steel lintel, the difficulty is in supporting the bricks above while you install the new support. We often use jack-posts and wedges which give us enough room to work. Once we have laid enough bricks on the lintel and the new mortar has hardened to offer support, we remove the posts and put on the finishing touches.
While some people want the brick arch to be recreated, which is something we can most definitely do, it takes quite a but more time and, of course, more cost. We have to figure out a way to keep the original look but expand the arch further or contract it smaller so that the new window can fit seamlessly.
At Wilkens, we have done both new brick arched lintels and steel lintel installations hundreds of times and can be relied on to deliver the work you need to update your home and provide you with a sound and stable opening for your new windows.
We are fully insured, our estimates are free and we can work closely with you or a hired general contractor to make sure that our quote will fit in with any blueprints or plans that may exist.
A chimney dome is a relatively easy and generally inexpensive way to ensure proper water runoff on the top of your chimney. It is comprised of masonry cement and an adhesive admixture (glue) that increases the bond between the dome and the chimney top or crown.
Why Dome Your Chimney?
By adding a slope of masonry cement around your flue tile and chimney liner, you prevent water from sitting on the crown. In the late fall and early spring months, when water freezes at night and thaws in the day time, water stuck on top of your chimney can cause erosion and even form cracks. Also, the added cement secures the individual parts of the crown.
How Often Do You Need To Dome Your Chimney?
There is no set duration that a dome will last. It all depends on the individual chimney’s exposure to weather, as well as the health of the rest of the chimney. Chimney’s should be inspected every so often in order to get ahead of any further damage that may be caused by improper water runoff.
Why You Should Hire A Mason To Dome Your Chimney
Repairing the crown of your chimney can be a relatively quick job, but should be handled by someone properly trained in working at heights. Many chimneys can be difficult to access and require scaffold, taller than average ladders and proper harnesses to be worked on. Beyond that, you want an expert who knows the proper repair techniques for each specific job, each individual chimney requires it’s own custom dome.
How Do I Know If My Chimney Needs To Be Domed?
While most home owners have no easy access to the tops of their chimneys, you may be able to tell from the ground if your chimney needs to be properly domed. Water leaking into your fireplace can be a sign that repair is needed. Check your fireplace for water during heavy rain.
Get Your Toronto Chimney Repaired
Call Wilkens Masonry at 416 425 8055 or request a free estimate online. We will respond right away and have someone evaluate your masonry needs with a no obligation quote. Family owned & operated for over 40 years, we are proud to be one of Toronto’s oldest masonry companies.
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Update the fireplace in my Toronto home
A fireplace is a popular feature to have in a home, and in older homes it was originally a valuable source of heat. Today they’re prized as room focal points that add extra ambience when lit. Over the years, however, an old wood-burning fireplace can become less efficient, a hassle to maintain and a source of dirt and mess in a home. Some older fireplaces may also have inherent design flaws that make using them harder than need be. Getting rid of the fireplace isn’t an ideal option because you’ll lose the character it adds to the room. Updating your old fireplace is easy and comes with several benefits that will make your love your fireplace even more. If you are looking for a fireplace update in your Toronto home, then Wilkens Contracting can help!
You can save money!
Older fireplaces can be drafty and aren’t an efficient heating source, 90% of the heat escapes through the chimney rather than entering the home when using a traditional wood burning fireplace. When you’re running the heat in the colder months some of it likely is escaping through the chimney or settled fireplace surround, sapping money as much as a drafty window or door. This problem can be easily solved by upgrading your old fireplace with a wood or pellet burning insert. Unlike freestanding wood or pellet stoves, inserts fit nicely in pre-existing fireplace openings. They’re generally sealed with a door, eliminating the draft problem. These highly efficient units create less mess since they’re enclosed and will keep the smoke from getting into the house. These styles of inserts can also heat a larger area than traditional fireplaces.
Increase the value of your home!
Because fireplaces are such desirable features, having a home with a lovely, new, efficient fireplace can increase the value of your house. Gas and electric fireplace inserts are more energy efficient and create a smaller carbon footprint since they don’t emit smoke. Being green is a popular feature with today’s environmentally conscious homeowners and home buyers. Having a beautiful fireplace that you can additionally list as energy efficient and recently updated can add value to your home when you’re ready to sell.
Update your home’s look!
While a fireplace itself is a timeless home feature, trends and designs come and go over time. You might find yourself loving the idea of having a fireplace but hating the ugly monstrosity in your home, especially if its aesthetic doesn’t match the rest of your home decor and design.
A simple facelift and upgrade can dramatically update the look and efficiency of your existing fireplace.
For all of your fireplace updating needs in Toronto, Wilkens Contracting has got your back! Contact us by clicking here! We can’t wait to hear from you!
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Why should I check my chimney in Toronto?
Your chimney provides protection against fire hazards, and the firebox has the same function. With regular chimney inspections and proper maintenance, you are helping to prevent a dangerous fire and avoiding repairs much more expensive than the cost of preventative measures. For chimney restorations, upgrades, and inspections, call Wilkens Contracting today! If you have been asking why you should get your chimney checked in your home in Toronto, then this article is for you!
Keeps your home and family safe
There is nothing more important than keeping your home and family safe while enjoying the fireplace or wood stove in the cooler months. Your chimney is an important ventilation system that allows smoke, toxins and dangerous fumes to escape the home. A clean chimney means a safer, more efficient fireplace and home heating appliance.
More efficient home heating
Also, your fireplace efficiency decreases when additional creosote is deposited in the chimney. The additional circulation of cooler air reduces energy efficiency requiring you to burn more wood and other fossil fuels, more often to stay warm. Also, small birds, rodents and insects can clog the flue preventing the escape of toxic fumes. And since the toxic fumes have difficulty escaping a clogged chimney, the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, AKA the silent killer also increases.
Prevent unforeseen chimney repairs
A wood-burning fireplace can reach temperatures of 1100°F or more. This creates ash, bits of wood, soot and other particles that are by-products of the combustion process that can cover the flue liner, smoke shelf, damper and masonry with dirt, grime and contaminants. Professional chimney cleaning helps to reduce wear and tear on these components so you can prevent costly chimney repairs from having to replace them prematurely.
So, why should you have the chimney checked in your Toronto home? The answers are written in stone, or should we say brick! For chimneys and brick restoration, repair, or upgrading, contact Wilkens Contracting today! Click here to find our contact information or to speak with a representative.
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Hire quality masonry services in Toronto
Working with a professional masonry contractor for your home improvement needs comes with many benefits compared to when DIY. However, the process of choosing a reliable contractor can be a daunting task. That is why it is important to ensure you work with a professional masonry contractor from Wilkens Contracting to benefit from our services. From brick restoration and repair to professional masonry services, Wilkens Contracting should be your first choice in Toronto!
We have the expertise!
Involving professionals for your brick and stone projects ensures that they will put their expert skills into it. Sometimes an issue that appears to be minor like crumbling stone could actually be dangerous for your foundation and these repairs can be extremely risky if not done by professional hands. Moreover their vast knowledge on construction material and the years of experience are enough to keep your home safe from damages.
We are efficient!
Apart from work expertise, our professionals also save you money and time in the project. Trying to take up the task on your hand can be tough and time consuming for you. You would need proper training before gearing up for it. In contrast, our professionals will complete the task faster and also save your money on supplies and potential damages. We have connections in the industry which can help you get better deals on material required in the project!
Think of the resale value!
Shouldering the burden of a masonry work can be risky for you as it may cause further harm to your home instead of repairing it and this would ultimately decrease the value of it. On the other hand, appointing our experts to maintain and renovate your stone structures will give it a better appearance, which will be attractive to any interested buyer as well!
A variety of services!
With experienced masonry contractors, you can also enjoy other services. Whether you require joint repair, masonry restoration, structural stabilization, cast stone repair, concrete rehabilitation, and more, you can count on a good masonry contractor.
If you are looking to hire quality masonry services in Toronto, then Wilkens Contracting is just a phone call away! We would love to hear from you and talk about your project! Click here to find our contact information or to speak with a representative.
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I need professional brick repair in Toronto
Giving your home a unique appeal, many will admire requires professional care and maintenance. Wilkens Contracting wants you to know that brick restoration can be an excellent way to extend the lifespan of your masonry, as well as ensure it looks its best, but it should always be performed by an experienced professional. If you need professional brick repair in Toronto, Wilkens Contracting is just a phone call away!
A brick restoration expert is trained to repair and restore your home’s masonry work in the safest way possible. When your bricks are cracking or crumbling, it can be a sign of structural damage that needs proper repairs. For this reason, it’s always best to hire a brick restoration professional who can inspect your masonry and determine whether your home’s structural integrity has been compromised.
Brick restoration work can be complicated; in most cases, a professional will need to scrape away existing mortar and install new mortar, as well as re-point damaged bricks. Performing this properly requires extensive, hands-on experience that only a seasoned professional has.
The same way there are many different types of lumber, there are also many bricks that have been used over the years. Some bricks might have been composed of a different type of clay than others or fired at a lower temperature, meaning they’ll require an expert touch to avoid damaging them during the repair process. A reliable brick restoration expert can easily determine how old your existing brick structure is and the brick it was built with. Then, they develop a repair plan to meet your structure’s unique restoration requirements.
What exactly is a brick mason?
Brick masons work with brick, be it real, manufactured, solid or veneer. They are commonly referred to as “bricklayers.” The process takes care and attention because the lines are typically very uniform and don’t forgive mistakes. Common installations include chimneys and fireplaces, columns, walls and patios.
Finding professional brick repair for your home in Toronto is easy when you choose Wilkens Contracting. Click here to find our contact information or to speak with a representative.
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How To Check Fireplaces For Hazards In Toronto Homes
Lighting up a fire in your fireplace creates a sense of coziness and relaxation, but when a fireplace or chimney falls into disrepair, calming feelings can quickly turn into panic and danger. Learn how to check fireplaces for hazards in Toronto homes, so you don’t fall victim to a house fire and the ensuing damage and destruction it causes. In this article by Wilkens Contracting, we will go over some of the signs of a damaged fireplace and what you should do in those cases, so continue below to find out how to safely examine the hearth of your home.
Look Over Your Firebox
The firebox is the area of the fireplace where you build your fire on the inner hearth. It is essential to check the interior of this section, examining the lining for any cracks or gaps and noticeable signs of wear. If you do spot these things, then call a professional for repair services. If left untreated, and the fireplace continues to see use, you could cause severe and permanent damage to your home.
Examine The Area For Smoke Stains
One of the most noticeable signs that your fireplace could be hazardous to use is the telltale markings of smoke stains. If you notice these stains on the ceiling, or above the fireplace opening, the inner workings of your fireplace are damaged and need professional repairs.
Check Your Chimney, and it’s Cap
The chimney cap is a covering that sits atop your home’s chimney on the outside, ensuring that outside debris, animals, and rainwater do not enter the chimney and reach the fireplace. Make sure your chimney cap is secure, and while you’re at it, examine the overall state of the stack itself. As chimneys are open to environmental conditions year-round, inspecting the structural integrity of your chimney is a must when considering fireplace hazards.
The Wood You Use
When you check for fireplace hazards, you should not only check the fireplace and chimney but consider looking at the wood you use to fuel your fire as well. Make sure not to use chemicals such as gasoline, kerosene, or charcoal starters. Do not use painted or pressure-treated wood, as they are known to produce toxic chemicals in the home. Wet and rotten wood, as well as diseased or mouldy wood pieces, should be avoided as well.
Enlist Our Help
With these pointers in mind, individuals can check fireplaces for hazards in Toronto homes easily and efficiently. If you have thoroughly examined your fireplace, and have noticed signs of damage, then give us a call at Wilkens Contracting, and we would be more than happy to facilitate the required repairs! We offer a free estimate to the Greater Toronto Area, so give us a call today and secure yourself one now.
Please click here to find our contact information online, and tell us about your fireplace needs.
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Best Season For Masonry Repair In Toronto
With summer quickly approaching, now is the time to think about the construction or repairs that your home is in dire need of. Have the long winter months of harsh snowstorms and onslaught of ice caused damage to your chimney? Maybe the melting snow caused water damage of your bricks that have created an aesthetically unappealing facade? Whatever the reason you are in need of high-quality masonry work, summer is the best season for masonry repair in Toronto. At Wilkens Contracting, our mission is to deliver nothing but the best brick repair services in the area! To learn more about our company, and how we can help you this upcoming summer season, take a look below.
Longer Days, Sunnier Skies
You might notice the copious amounts of road work and construction that takes place in the Toronto area, and across Ontario, when the warm months come sweeping in. The spring and summertime provide the best weather to complete construction and repair jobs successfully, on time and with beautiful results. As the nature of this job consists of being outdoors, the boon of longer daylight hours, clearer skies, and warmer weather that summer provides, means a more substantial amount of work can be completed in a day, providing faster results for you.
Why Hire Us?
As a fully licensed and insured family business, we strive to treat every customer as if they were a family member themselves. Our mission is to provide the highest quality services we can, ensuring that the job you hire us for is done on time and to your satisfaction. With over five decades of experience working in the Greater Toronto Area, we have the knowledge, skill, and expertise to facilitate repairs on chimneys, fireplaces, facades, and much more! We possess a vast inventory of bricks of all kinds, with mortar to match any colour used in Toronto homes, so our masonry repairs will seamlessly blend into your home’s aesthetic, showing no signs that you required repairs in the first place!
With summer quickly approaching, now is the time to inquire about our free masonry estimates. With the best season for masonry repairs in Toronto upon us, secure our professional expertise before we become fully booked up! Whatever brick related services you require, we here at Wilkens Contracting can help!
Please click here to find our contact information online, and schedule your free estimate before it’s too late!
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Hire A Brick Repair Company In Toronto
To perform professional brick repair, and have the results come out aesthetically pleasing and satisfying to the homeowner, we at Wilkens Contracting ensure only the highest quality of materials are used, using tried and true techniques, while paying attention to the smallest of details, all to facilitate seamless masonry work. If you are looking to hire a brick repair company in Toronto that can provide all of this and more for your home, then consider hiring our team of professional! To learn more about our services, and why you should choose our company for your brick-related needs, please continue to read below.
Match Your Material
By hiring Wilkens Contracting and our team of professionals, you aren’t just securing yourself over fifty years of experience in the industry, but you’ll gain access to our inventory stocked full of new and antique bricks that will match the aesthetic of your home. Colour, size, and texture all matter when choosing the material to achieve seamless brick repair in walls, chimneys, and the like. Our inventory doesn’t have what you’re looking for? No matter, we can provide brick and mortar tinting of our modern masonry materials to achieve the look you desire.
Knowledge Of Old
We not only bring decades of our experience to the table, but we use techniques and skills that have been developed through centuries of use. Masonry is an age-old profession, as Masons have been hired to construct buildings that far outlast the hands that build them. By using artistic, scientific, and architectural knowledge gathered through hundreds of years of developmental use, we have perfected our twenty-first-century services to provide aesthetically pleasing brick repair to the Greater Toronto Area.
Hire Our Services
From tuck pointing and brick restoration to chimney and fireplace repairs and rebuilds, our company can perform an array of masonry jobs that will have your home looking as good as new. If you notice your brickwork is Spalding, we can fix that problem in no time. Has your chimney or fireplace fallen into disrepair because of environmental damage or disuse? We can easily get the job done! Want to add a window or door to your brick wall? Give us a call!
So when you are looking to hire a brick repair company in Toronto, consider enlisting our help at Wilkens Contracting, as we have the expertise and the required tools for any masonry job in the area!
Please click here to find our contact information online, and inquire more about our services, or schedule a free estimate today!
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Toronto Services For Brick Openings
Owners looking to make changes to their homes, whether it be creating an opening in their brick wall, or closing off one instead, we here at Wilkens Contracting can provide masonry services to get the job done! We service the Greater Toronto Area and are happy to visit your home for a free estimate. Therefore, those looking for Toronto services for brick openings should consider enlisting the help of professionals, like our experienced contractors at Wilkens Contracting. Find out more about our masonry services below!
With so many how-to videos and websites, the internet is a treasure trove of knowledge that can help you create, repair, and build a multitude of things on your own. This a great development for doing small jobs around the house, but when it comes to more substantial repairs and rebuilds, it’s sometimes best to leave the work to professionals. If you are considering creating a brick opening in your home, why not enlist our help our professional services here at Wilkens Contracting that will keep your home structurally sound, and those within, safe from harm.
Our Services At Work
Choosing to work with our company means securing yourself a team that has decades of experience in the construction industry, with the knowledge and know-how to complete any masonry job you require of us. We will ensure the structural soundness of the opening, and complete all masonry work to have your new window or door looking like it always belonged in your home. As we have the utmost respect for our clients, we will always clean the area in which we are working. We’ll make sure the place is spotless before we leave, so you don’t have to worry about anything else except enjoying your new addition to the home.
Finding Toronto services for brick openings for your home can be a quick and efficient fix when you hire professional like us at Wilkens Contracting. We have been faithfully servicing the Greater Toronto Area since 1977, and completing all masonry jobs to the full satisfaction of our clients! Our company offers a free estimate for individuals looking to hire masonry services for brick repairs, openings, and much more, providing transparent pricing for all potential clients.
Please click here to find our contact information online, and inquire more about our expertise, or schedule your free estimate surrounding your brick openings today.