Difficulty: 2 of 5


It takes only a few tools and some mortar to make an old brick wall look like new.


Wear safety glasses, work gloves and work clothes when chipping or grinding brick. Flying shards may cause serious injury.


– Brick hammer
– Chisel
– Gloves
– Hand mister
– Hawk
– Mortar
– Safety goggles
– Stiff wire brush
– Trowel
– Vacuum

Step 1: Remove the old mortar

Use a brick hammer and a chisel to remove the old mortar. Break back the mortar joints until you reach solid mortar or the mortar is strong. You should break back the mortar at least 3/4 – 1″ so the new mortar will bond well to the brick. Replace any soft or decomposing bricks. Clean out any remaining loose mortar with a stiff wire brush, and then vacuum out the cracks between the bricks.
Break back the mortar at least 3/4 – 1

Step 2: Apply new mortar

Prepare a batch of new mortar according to the directions. It should have the consistency of peanut butter. Use a hand mister to thoroughly wet the space in between the bricks. Load a hawk or a board with mortar, place it up against the brick wall, and pack the mortar into the cracks with a hand trowel or a jointer.
Pack the mortar into the crack.

Step 3: Sculpt the joints

When the mortar is fingerprint hard, sculpt the joints to match the surrounding mortar. To shape a slight inward curve into the mortar, use a professional jointer or your gloved finger.
Use your finger to sculpt the joints.

Step 4: Clean the bricks and moisten the joints

Use a wire brush to clean off the face of the bricks before the mortar dries. Keep the joints slightly moist as the mortar so it doesn’t crack as it dries. Step back and admire your repointed brick wall!
Clean the bricks with a wire brush.