Common Stains on your Masonry
If you’re sick of unsightly stains or dirt on your masonry then you can have it professionally removed. Whether you live in a new build or are looking to restore an older property, marks on bricks, concrete and terracotta can be taken care of leaving your building looking its very best. Here are some the common stains that can affect a new construction:
- Too much mortar
Smears or drips can cause bricks to be marked with excess mortar leaving a messy appearance. This can happen during building work where mortar is smeared onto surrounding materials and allowed to dry. The most effective treatment needs to be applied ideally within the first 4 weeks of installation. Most brick can be cleaned of excess mortar, including sandstone, coloured brick, flagstones, smooth and textured concrete, slate and limestone. For Masonry Cleaning Products, visit https://www.stonehealth.com/stone-cleaning-products/
- Mud and Clay
Building sites can be pretty mucky places and it’s no surprise that remnants of mud, dust and clay can stain walls. This can be as a result of construction work, wind or rain. Most dirt of this variety will be removed with a pressure washer and red clay stains with a purpose-made cleaning product.
- Green/Brown stains
Light-coloured brick can sometimes show signs of discolouration causing green, brown, yellow or purple staining in the middle of the bricks. This can often occur due to water saturation in new builds. Salts dissolve in rainwater and construction water, which then rise to the surface on drying. Once the water evaporates from the surface, it can leave behind these colourful salt deposits. It’s always best to avoid getting bricks wet during construction but the stains can be treated effectively.
- White Marks
A loose, powdery white substance can form on bricks and consist of salt deposits that disappear when wet but reappear on drying. Again, these efflorescent stains appear as a result of moisture inside the brick which rises to the surface, evaporates and leaves behind these white marks. As long as the masonry is left to dry out fully before treating, these marks can be removed.
Any oil or fatty grease stains will cause discolouration or a darkening of the brickwork. This can sometimes occur where traffic or vehicles have been in operation or parked near to an exterior wall. It can also appear where food in areas where food has been prepared.
This is evident by a white or grey crust forming on the surface of the bricks or running down from a hole or crack in the mortar joints between bricks. Water has collected in the wall due to ineffective waterproofing during construction which leads to water-soluble calcium dissolving. As the water seeps through the gaps and hits the atmosphere, the calcium crystalizes and forms a hard crust on the outer bricks. It can be tough to scrape off and once the excess has been scraped, repeat applications of cleaner may be required.
Other common problems can include brown manganese, which is another form of efflorescence like the white or yellow/green staining mentioned above, acid burns, white scum and rust.