There are many ways to clean bricks on your house, in the garden and on the floor. Bricks are made of clay and blasted in a big kiln, so they are porous over time moss and algae will take hold and start to grow on the face of the bricks.
Walls facing the sun (south) have fewer algae growth with bricks facing away from the sun (north) gather more algae. So the more sunshine a wall receives the less chance of algae taking hold.
Most brick walls will be affected by:
- Lime (white marks)
- Old cement
- Algae & mould
- Plants and moss
These can all be removed with the cleaners and techniques listed in this article. If you believe you have a rising damp issue then be sure to repair this before it starts to breakdown your bricks and
Cleaning Your Bricks – Bleach
When cleaning your bricks you have to be careful not to pit the bricks, so strong acids are a big no-no. Bleach and some brick cleaners are great at making your bricks look like new again. Here is the process of cleaning your bricks around the home with a bleach and water mix:
- Protective equipment is a must
- Start at the top of the wall
- Use a stiff sweeping brush and clean any debris away
- Re-point any missing mortar/cement
- Use a bleach mixture and scrub the wall with the brush
- Start with a small section to see how it affects your bricks
The bleach cleaning process works great, it needs elbow grease but you will notice a huge improvement. Wash your brick wall down with water, making sure all bleach has been washed away because it will keep eating into your bricks.
TOP TIP: Planning a sunny day is best because your brick wall will get very wet. This will help dry your external wall much quicker!
Cleaning Bricks – Acid Bath
This cleaning technique is generally before you start re-pointing a wall. You scrape out the old cement give the wall an acid bath and re-point the wall. This gives your brick wall a huge improvement and will make your house look nice and fresh!
- Use gloves, goggles, mask and a protective suit if possible
- Stiff brush for cleaning any debris away
- Use a small scrapper if there is cement on the face of the bricks
- Re-point missing mortar/cement
- Make up the acid bath solution as directed
- Carefully rub the bath over the bricks
- Once covered wash down with a hose
This will bring the life back to your bricks. The acid will eat into your brick face revealing fresh-looking bricks. If you are pointing your wall at the same time then remove the cement before applying the acid bath to your brick wall! Once you have cleaned your bricks start re-pointing your bricks.
Conclusion – Cleaning House Bricks
Cleaning your bricks makes a huge improvement to your house. You can also use this method on garden walls, sheds and anything made with bricks.
If your brick walls are very damp and have a lot of algae growing over them then you might have a rising damp issue. You should repair rising damp as quickly as possible because it will cause many issues inside the house!