Stonework- why it falls apart?
Often when our estimator visits a home in need of some relaying or re-pointing of stone work he is asked "why did it fall apart". It is common to see Flagstone steps absolutely falling apart- or stones literally coming off of the steps presenting a tripping or safety hazard. The first question that comes to mind is "why". Stone work, when done correctly by a skilled artisan isn't fairly cheap- so why don't you tend to see it last?
The answers are many but mainly boil down to two things:
Weather or the elements
The problem today is that many companies/ masonry contractors who are not qualified to do so- take on a stone work job when they don't have someone skilled in the art. Perhaps the employee has done it once before, seen it done or is a bricklayer so assumes they can do it right. Stone work is a fickle art. Every stone, joint and placement must be exactly levelled correctly so that water does not pool or collect at the wrong joint and sit causing decay. Things like salt and water sitting on your stone are likely to cause decay.
So when choosing the right contractor- price should not always be forefront on your mind. Look at reputation, duration and previous work. Cheap work, in the long run, is expensive and when customers are fed up of pouring thousands into their home with poor results- Otto's Masonry is the company that can be trusted to get the job fixed up right and at competitive pricing.