Comments Off on Creating New Brick Openings For Windows and Doors
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.
Comments Off on Westminster Avenue – Fireplace Restoration
I am quite happy with the work that Bill did for us. We have not tried to use the fireplace yet, but everything seems to be in working order. Bill arrived when he said he would come, was quick, and left things clean. He also took time to explain/show me how the damper, etc. worked and to answer my questions.
Comments Off on Gladstone Avenue – Walkway & Flagstone Repair
I called David at your office the day after the work, to express my complete satisfaction. The workmanship was superb — as usual. The mason, Alan, also gave me a useful tip afterward. I look forward to continuing to use your company for all masonry jobs at both my home and my income property.
Comments Off on Calstock Drive – Chimney Repair & Tuck Pointing
Frank and his boys did a great job. I have put the following comments below in my review of Wilkens Contracting that I submitted today to Homestars. I gave you a 10/10 rating.
I had a small chimney of yellow bricks that were chipping and needed to be replaced. I also had some red bricks in the garage wall that needed to be replaced. I contacted three companies in the Toronto area. One would not come to the house to view the chimney but instead based on the size of the chimney gave me an estimate to fix the chimney and 70 bricks on the garage. Two companies did come to the house and gave me their estimates. Ernie Wilkens of Wilkens Contracting was one of those companies. Wilkens was $180.00 more than one company and the same price as the other one. I selected Wilkens to do the chimney and the garage because they would replace 100 bricks on the garage instead of the 70-80 bricks the other two companies would replace. Secondly Ernie listened to my concerns about not disturbing the flat roof membrane around the chimney and explained what they would do to address my concerns. Frank and his sons showed up on time on the appointed day. Frank viewed the work to be done and then went and got the bricks. He believed that more bricks were needed but said he would not charge me for the extra bricks he was getting. That was very nice of him as some places charge $15 for each extra brick over the estimated number. The work was done in 1 day. The new bricks matched the old colour very well. The work area was cleaned up. They even put mortar in several cracks on the inside cement block wall of the garage. Ernie contacted me later to see if I was satisfied with the work. I am very happy with the craftsmanship of their work and will recommend them to my neighbours.