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red brick

my front porch red brick has turned white what can i do to restore it
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Posted 2016-09-28T18:57:13+0000  by Shery Shery
Image result for images of cleaning brick with muriatic acid

Greetings Shery,

I have done a bit research and checked with a Pro desk associate at my store and the consensus is that muriatic acid works really well at cleaning masonry. Muriatic acid is a strong cleaner and needs to handle with the utmost safety precautions, (gloves, goggles, etc.) which are all on the label of the bottle.

Check out this link for product information.

Happy scrubbing, Maureen 

Posted 2016-09-29T16:42:21+0000  by Maureen_HD_BOS
Hi Shery,

The first step is to power wash the brick using a hose or a pressure washer, this will remove a good portion of the dirt, mold, mildew and other contaminants on the brick. Scrubbing with stiff bristle brush will help on hard to clean areas. Let the brick dry for 24 hours before any other work is done.

If this is not sufficient try an acid wash with muriatic acid, this is a very dangerous product that can cause serious burns if you are not very careful. Mix the acid in a bucket with water  9 parts water 1 part acid, wear long acid proof rubber gloves and eye protection preferably a face shield as the acid will burn you if it comes in contact with your skin, also avoid the fumes as they are toxic, a respirator is recommended.

Apply the acid with a bristle brush, scrub the brick and then wash off the acid, the runoff will kill any plants in the area so cover them or protect them from the run off.

Once the brick is clean allow it to dry thoroughly and then apply a sealer to maintain its appearance. You can purchase the sealer at your local Home Depot.

Posted 2016-09-29T17:03:12+0000  by Mike_HD_OC

Hello Shery and welcome to the Community.

Here is a little extra information to add to Maureen’s response.

Natural salts and minerals are present in the raw materials that make up masonry products. These salts and minerals remain trapped within masonry in solid form until they are dissolved into water.  Winter is when masonry buildings do most of their drying, cold, dry air will draw this liquid back out of the material where it evaporates.  The accumulation of minerals and salts on masonry surfaces, appears as a white chalky growth.

This process is called Efflorescence formation.

While efflorescence in itself is not a problem, except for its unsightliness, it is a symptom of a problem, namely the presence of excess water in the masonry, which can lead to more serious structural and health issues. 


There are several methods to remove efflorescence:


Pressurized water can sometimes be used to remove or dissolve efflorescence.  The use of water to remove efflorescence may result in the re-absorption of crystals into the host material, from which they may later reappear as more efflorescence. It is advisable that if water is used in the removal process that it is dried off very quickly.


For a DIY approach: 1) A strong stiff brush.  2) A mild acid solution, such as white vinegar can be used to dissolve efflorescence, then rinse with a baking soda solution.


For PROFESSIONALS- Apply diluted muriatic acid can be used to dissolve efflorescence.  Water should be applied first so that the acid does not discolor the brick itself.  Following application of the muriatic acid solution, a baking soda solution can be used to neutralize the acid and prevent any additional damage to the masonry.


Muriatic Acid is toxic, Protective clothing, gloves and eye protection should be worn to avoid contact with skin or eyes.


Thank you for your inquiry.



Posted 2016-09-29T17:05:14+0000  by Char_HD_CHI
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