Brick masonry is a staple of many homes and structures around the world, offering an attractive and energy-efficient choice for constructing buildings of many kinds. Not only are they visually pleasing, but brick structures are also exceptionally durable, which can be seen from the countless historic structures in many neighborhoods and cities as a testament to their popularity and reliability as a building material.
While you may think of brick as naturally resistant to wear and in need of little maintenance, over time, the brick exterior of masonry structures will fade, requiring maintenance to preserve both its appearance and structural integrity. Here are a few ways you can restore the look of faded brick exteriors to ensure it lasts as long as possible.
When Does Your Masonry Need Attention?
In many cases, brick masonry can last over a century without needing extensive repairs. Most of the time, it is the mortar joints that need attention, which typically break down over 20 years or so on average. Other factors like extreme weather events and moisture penetration into the brick also cause harm, requiring inspection and maintenance where appropriate. If you happen to see any portion of your brick wall showing signs of cracking or tumbling, then it is time for masonry repairs to sustain its longevity.
Hire a Cleaning Service
In many scenarios, a power washing is sufficient for cleaning up any buildup of dust, dirt, and grim staining your brick masonry. For some stains, you can use a stiff brush and soap to scrub off as much as you can before hosing it down with water once again. While you can do this on your own, in the case of more stubborn stains that require more specialized tools to remove, you should consider hiring a professional cleaner to do the task for you instead and avoid any accidental damage.
Another way to restore the color of your brick exterior is by applying a sealer to the surface. Depending on the sealer used, the task may require multiple coatings or just one layer to restore the appearance and color of the masonry. Furthermore, it will prevent water penetration, staining, salt damage, and more from further damaging and causing discoloration to your brick walls. Just be sure to use the appropriate sealer, as using the wrong type can cause accidental harm.
Tuckpointing is another option to restore your brick walls if the mortar is beginning to deteriorate and fade. The mortar is the weakest part of the structure and can suffer damage from a variety of different reasons, such as extreme temperatures and moisture, which is why tuckpointing is a service that you should utilize throughout the masonry’s lifetime. The process involves removing the faded mortar and applying a new mortar to restore the structural integrity and appearance of the brick wall. As it is a difficult task that requires special tools and care, it is best left in the hands of a professional.
Identify Underlying Issues
Finally, faded bricks may often have an underlying issue that cannot be addressed by any of the above methods alone. One example is Efflorescence, which is a white and salty substance that forms on brick walls that require professional attention to remove. This typically happens due to moisture and creates a discoloration that you will first have to address before you can begin employing other restoration methods to restore the overall appearance of your brick masonry.
Work With With Professionals
If you are experiencing faded brick exteriors and are considering your options for addressing them, hiring professional services will save you a lot of headaches and time. At Turnbull Masonry, we offer quality services to meet any needs and concerns you may have. Contact us today to learn more.