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Latest News - homeDESIGNstl - homeDESIGNstl

Latest News

Fire Safety Through Brick

The superior fire protection of brick. The brick: It wraps itself around your most prized possessions – unless, of course, you live in a house clad with lesser materials. And those prized possessions? You and your loved ones who dwell inside those four walls. It just makes sense to protect them with the exceptional fire […]

BELOW GRADE BRICK VENEERS Q: Can brick veneers extend below grade?

A: Good question. Brick and other masonry materials are porous and ideally should remain above grade. If your brick veneer comes in contact with the earth, your wall may experience unsightly stains caused by “rising damp” — the wicking of moisture and impurities. However, we realize some designers do not want to “see” bare foundation […]

A Quick Note About Repairs

You might find that some of your existing masonry work is in need of repair. Perhaps your chimney was damaged in a storm or your front stoop’s mortar needs mending. This is a great opportunity not only to fix what needs fixing, but also to modernize your chimneys, stoops, stairs, and more, through careful and […]

Interior Handset Stone Applications

Q: What is the most common application method used to hang interior handset stone? A: The common — and most cost effective — method of hanging interior stone is the “spot and tie” method. In this application, usually copper or other # 9 non-corrosive wire is used to secure the stone to the back-up wall […]

Block wetness Q: Is there a point when block is too wet to be put in a wall?

A: Currently, there are no accepted industry standards for determining “how wet is too wet.” But let’s use plain old common sense. To create a good bond between concrete masonry units and mortar, units have to have enough suction to draw in the mortar’s moisture. Too much suction leaves too little water in the joint […]

Clearing the Air: How Cleaning Your Chimney Makes Your House Safer (Part 2 of 2)

In addition to scheduling regular inspections and sweepings, which is discussed in more detail in part one, homeowners can take further steps to discourage the buildup of creosote, minimize the threat of harmful emissions, and ensure the safety of their chimneys. Line the chimney with a chimney liner made of a metal alloy appropriate to […]

Clearing the Air: How Cleaning Your Chimney Makes Your House Safer (Part 1 of 2)

Although the image of soot-blackened Victorian chimney sweeps is outdated, professional chimney cleaning—and the attendant benefits—is still as important as ever. Clogged or neglected chimneys are not only less efficient and smellier, but they can also pose safety risks. Two Potential Dangers: Chimney Fires and Carbon Monoxide The common cause of many chimney safety issues […]

Before Using Your Chimney: Important Chimney Maintenance

While annual chimney maintenance can be a chore, the time you invest in cleaning and inspecting your fireplace and chimney can pay great dividends in both ease of fireplace use during the depths of winter and keeping your home and family safe throughout the cold-weather season. To get the most out of your fireplace this […]

Preparing Your Home for Winter

Routine home maintenance probably isn’t at the top of many homeowners’ lists this holiday season. However, to increase the likelihood of a warm and safe winter, it’s important to make sure certain parts of your home – such as your furnace, chimney, and hot water heater – have received the attention they need. Furnace. Furnace […]

A Good Friend to the Environment

Masonry materials have always been recognized as sturdy and attractive, but few realize that they are energy-efficient and earth-friendly, too. In today’s environmentally conscious world, masonry materials are “green” throughout their life cycle. Brick originates from Colorado’s own clay, which is a nearly inexhaustible natural resource. During the clay mining process, virtually no harm is […]