Home>Discussions>EXTERIORS>Drill into brick or mortar?
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Brad
Drill into brick or mortar?

I have a small red brick home and I want to put up a cloths line outside. I'll have to attach one end of the line to the house and I'm wondering if it would be better to drill into the brick or the mortar around the brick. I'm leaning towards the mortar because i've read that it's much easier to repair/replace. My only hesitation is that the mortar won't be strong enough to carry the weight of a line holding a couple towels and a blanket.

Thoughts?

von_steuben
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

You'll need an appropriately sized masonry drill bit to do this job; I've always drilled directly into the center of the brick; most brick is rather soft compared to stone & a 3/8" or 1/4" diameter hole can usually be easily done; many diy-type drills have a "hammer" setting which is designed for diy drilling into masonry & will make it lots easier to getting a 2" or 3" deep hole in the brick.

The hook-type steel fitting then has to be set into the brick with the mixable small expoxy tubes of adhesive & allowed to cure for a day or so before it can be used as a clothesline.

dj1
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

Whether you drill into the brick or the mortar, make sure the your anchor in sloped down, to be able to carry the weight.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

Mortar is softer than the brick so it won't hold as well. If you anchor into mortar the area holding the strain equals only the diameter of the anchor. If you anchor into the brick the area holding the strain equals the circumference of the entire brick- a lot more area to pull against. For this, I'd opt for lead shield anchors intended for 1/4" lag screws and substitute 1/4" hook or screw-eyes as desired. A bit larger hole and more work drilling but it will never fail no matter how much you load the clothesline. Should you want to get rid of it later, take the screw-eye out, tap the anchor in a little deeper then fill with caulking.Take a similar color scrap brick and pound it to pieces what a hammer (use eye protection) and rub the grains and dust into the wet caulking and the hole will practically vanish.

Phil

Clarence
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

Yes you should drill into the brick.
Use expansion nails also know as Drive Pins.
Drill hole insert drive anchor hit with hammer you are done.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?
Clarence wrote:

Yes you should drill into the brick.
Use expansion nails also know as Drive Pins.
Drill hole insert drive anchor hit with hammer you are done.

For once I'm in disagreement with Clarence. I've seen bricks cracked with drive pins; the sleeving metal seems to be harder than with plastic or lead anchors so when the pin expands it, there's not as much 'give'. It's not common but it does happen. With that spot and that brick who knows, maybe any expanding anchor would have done the same but I'd rather repair a pulled anchor than a broken brick so I'd start with softer.

This being that I doubt they are set up for Tapcon screws which have become my 'go to' masonry anchor for just about everything now- if I were doing it that's what I'd use.

Phil

Clarence
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?
Mastercarpentry wrote:

For once I'm in disagreement with Clarence. I've seen bricks cracked with drive pins; the sleeving metal seems to be harder than with plastic or lead anchors so when the pin expands it, there's not as much 'give'. It's not common but it does happen. With that spot and that brick who knows, maybe any expanding anchor would have done the same but I'd rather repair a pulled anchor than a broken brick so I'd start with softer.

This being that I doubt they are set up for Tapcon screws which have become my 'go to' masonry anchor for just about everything now- if I were doing it that's what I'd use.

Phil

I will agree that Tap Con's would be a better product to use.
Have done a pull out test with TapCons on 1927 interior brick in a Theater total test were 100 each lowest pullout was 450 PSI avg. pullout was 900 PSI and some went to 1200 PSI
The Engineer required at least 400 PSI.

As for the use of Drive Pins I have had no problems with cracking brick or failure on pull out.
I have not tested the pullout rating on the Drive Pins.

All the test for the S shaped drive anchors failed on the 1927 Brick.Pullout was 250 PSI

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

Testing would be advised then.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Drill into brick or mortar?

I wouldn't expect a clothesline to need more than 100lb security per line so long as it doesn't deteriorate over time, which the methods we recommended won't.

Adding Tapcons to my can't do-without-em list along with WD-40, duct tape and bungee cords :cool:

Phil

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