Mold, Moss, and Mildew
All masonry, whether brick, block, stone, or concrete, is made from earthen materials. Therefore, it tends to feel the effects of nature more commonly than synthetic materials. Over time, a masonry wall may tend to grow mold, moss, or mildew. While some people may appreciate the natural appearance, it’s not beneficial to leave these plants growing in your masonry. All masonry begins its life as dirt, and plants eat dirt. Consequently, over time, plant life growing in your masonry will eat at it like a cavity will eat away at your tooth.
Advantage Masonry recommends that a wash be performed to eliminate any plant life that may be growing in your masonry. The wash is a three-part process. First, we apply water to the wall to activate the plants. This wakes them up and gets them ready to “feed”. Next, we apply an acid/detergent solution known as Sure Kleen 600. The chemical is scrubbed onto the surface of the masonry and is given time to rest within the masonry for a few moments; then, it’s washed away. The last step is to clean away the debris with a pressure washer. It’s very important to include the chemical wash as part of the process. Often times, an inexperienced contractor may simply pressure wash. The problem with this scenario is that the plant life living within the masonry will penetrate the surface to a depth of about a half an inch, and the pressure washer is only lifting the surface material; therefore, the plant just grows right back, similar to mowing your grass. The chemical wash, however, kills vegetation living deeper within the masonry structure.
Efflorescence is a white film on the surface of a masonry structure. It’s mostly made of salt and calcium although various other minerals can often contribute. Because masonry is made of earthen materials, it contains minerals. When water penetrates the masonry, the minerals are dissolved into the water. As the masonry dries, the water is wicked to the surface, thus depositing the minerals onto the surface through evaporation. This normally doesn’t cause any lasting damage but rather looks unsightly. A chemical wash using Sure Kleen efflorescence remover is required in order to clean the minerals from the surface of the masonry.
NOTE: If you are experiencing any of these problems, please click the link below to schedule an appointment for one of our qualified technicians to visit your home for a free cost assessment.