By Morris and James Carey For The Associated Press
Brick is both an attractive and durable finish. However, over time the mortar that bonds bricks together can become cracked or loose. The removal and replacement of cracked or missing mortar between the bricks is called, "pointing." Start the process by chipping away cracked or loose mortar, using a cold chisel and a hammer. Be careful not to damage the bricks. Next, use a brush to remove the remaining debris. Brush the joints with water before repointing them. Mix up a batch of masonry mortar and force it into place using a mason's trowel. Do the vertical joints first. Complete the job by removing the excess mortar and shaping the joint with a brick jointer.