How to Use a Joint Raker

When brick or rock walls held together with mortar begin to crumble, they generally must be refinished, also called repointing, to preserve their integrity. A joint raker is a specific tool to remove crumbling jointing material without hurting the integrity of the wall itself. The raker is simple to use, and only requires a few steps, and patience, to fall in to the groove.

When repairing old houses, you will often need to repoint the walls.
  1. Place the joint raker at the beginning of one of the creases in the wall where you desire to remove the mortar.

  2. Begin to move the rake in one direction, pressing to remove as much mortar as you can in one swipe.

  3. Remove the rake and insert it back in where you originally set it and repeat the fluid motion in that same area until you have removed the mortar to a depth of twice the width of the overall width of the wall.

  4. Repeat this motion all over the entire wall, both horizontally and vertically, until you have removed all the mortar to an equal depth.

  5. Remove any extra pieces of mortar around the joints using the soft paintbrush. Begin to repoint the wall if you desire.


  • Always wear protective goggles and gloves when using the tool, as it can cause chips of mortar to fly.

About the Author

Based in Kingston, Canada, Samantha Lowe has been writing for publication since 2006. She has written articles for the "Mars' Hill" newspaper and copy for various design projects. Her design and copy for the "Mars' Hill" won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker award in 2008. Lowe holds an Honors BA from Trinity Western University, and a MSc in Occupational Therapy from Queen's University where she is currently doing her PhD.