Brick may be a timeless material, but it takes proper care to ensure it stays looking that way. This age-old masonry material requires specific cleaning, repair, and replacement methods perfected by brick restoration experts. Here’s a look into how they make the old brick look new again.
Repairs & Replacements
Brick restoration requires a detailed observation of the structure before achieving a clean and brighter exterior. Professionals first identify damage and find any underlying issues in order to take fix the structure—because what good is a shiny house if it’s crumbling?
When appraising the surface, there are a few signs of damage experts tend to look for:
- Cracked mortar & faces: This can be identified by small or large hairline cracks woven along with the mortar. These cracks also may also extend to the surface or face of each block.
- Deterioration: If a block is missing half of its width, it’s best to replace it rather than harvesting it.
- Bulges & looseness: Blocks that appear as if they are falling out or are easily movable need replaced rather than harvested.
After identifying any damage, making needed replacements is the next step taken by professionals. Using power tools, the professionals will chisel away the mortar surrounding the broke, bulging, or deteriorated brick to remove it. If salvageable, the expert will repair it and place it right back where it came from. If it is unsalvageable, a replacement is needed. Finding a new block of the same dimensions, color, and density is where professional brick restoration experience and knowledge come in hand.
To repair cracked mortar, professionals will conduct a process known as pointing, but in this case, the better term would be repointing. Pointing refers to the process of finishing/sealing mortar and brick. Repointing is the use of a specific mortar mixture to repair cracks in the mortar.
With the structure once again sound, professionals can begin cleaning the surface. For exterior structures, experts use heavy-duty tools for maximum results. The most common ones include:
- Pressure washer
- Professional cleaning solution
- Heavy-duty scrub brush
- Large waterproof tarp (to cover any vegetation)
For the best clean, professionals will saturate the surface of the structure with water. Not letting the surface dry, they then add the solution into the pressure washer and spray it from bottom to top in order to get rid of dirt, mold, mildew, moss, and efflorescence deposits. After it’s clean, they rinse off the detergent from top to bottom thoroughly, letting it dry for at least 48 hours. Once completely dry, they apply a sealant that helps waterproof the structure and discourages excessive water exposure that can cause damage.
This method is popular among professionals for restoring commercial buildings and the outside of homes. To learn more about the best ways to clean interior brick click here.
Looking for a professional cleaning solution?
TidalWashers offers professional industrial-grade cleaning solutions for all of your brick restoration needs. Clean, brighten and protect your masonry surfaces with our variety of detergents available to buy in bulk. Contact our team or visit our website to learn more!