How To Replace A Brick Mailbox
Usually a brick mailbox is a metal mailbox encased in bricks that serve as a pillar stand. Alternatively, brick mailboxes can also be installed in brick walls located along the front of a property. Occasionally, the metal mailbox becomes damaged and rusty and all or part of it needs to be replaced or repaired. With age and exposure to rain, snow and the elements, a rusty mailbox becomes inevitable. Although it is rarely necessary to replace a metal mailbox regularly, it is needed maintenance for boxes contained in brick pedestal structures.
Brick Pedestals and Walls
Brick pedestals and walls are constructed of bricks and mortar and a metal mailbox is usually placed in an enclosure at the top of the pedestal. In order to replace a metal mailbox, it is usually necessary to dig the box out of the existing mortar. While this daunting process can be time consuming and take a definite amount of effort, it can be well worth the needed work in order to retain the structural integrity of the masonry pedestal. This is a much more attractive alternative to demolishing the entire brick pedestal for most homeowners, particularly since a brick mailbox can be a decorative addition to an established home.
Step 1 – Determine Damage
Examine the mailbox to determine the level of damage and if you will need to completely dig it out of the masonry or if you can only replace the front metal door of the mailbox.
Step 2 – Remove Mailbox Door
If, instead of replacing the entire box, you decide that you only need to replace the front door of the box, cut the existing door away from the mail box with tin snips. Attach a new door with screws.
Step 3 – Chisel away Mortar
If you will need to dig the box out of the brick pillar, then take a masonry chisel and begin to chisel away at the thin layer of mortar that is between the mailbox and the bricks. Be careful not to damage the bricks, but do not be concerned about damaging the mailbox since you will be removing and replacing it anyway.
Step 4 – Remove Mailbox
Continue to work at the mortar until you have the mailbox completely free. With the mailbox removed, chisel away any remaining mortar until you have a smooth hole for a replacement box.
Step 5 – Check New Mailbox Fit
Set the new mailbox in place to make sure that it fits in the available space. Remove it and set the box aside for the moment.
Step 6 – Mix Mortar
Mix the mortar according to the package instructions.
Place a thin layer of mortar inside the open space in the brick pedestal.
Step 7 – Install New Mailbox
Set the new mailbox back in place. Push it firmly into the hole and wipe away any excess mortar that pushes out away from the box.