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Brick has long been a staple of masonry and architecture. Its texture, durability, and rustic appeal have allowed it to dominate the world of building. From commercial buildings to homes, brick walls are as appealing as they are functional. If your home features brick walls on the inside and/or outside, it is important to ensure that they remain sturdy and maintain their aesthetic appeal. Here are some tips for maintaining your home’s brick walls, inside and out.

Maintaining Brick on the Outside

To begin, it’s worth noting that exterior brick surfaces face much more potential wear and tear than interior walls. Wind, rain, hail, snow, and extreme temperatures gradually chip away at the brick exterior. While you can’t control the weather, you can take preventative measures to mitigate possible environmental damage.

To avoid severe water damage, you’ll want to seal your brick exterior. The process for applying sealant isn’t all that different from exterior painting. First, you should remove old paint (if there is any) by scraping the surface. Then, you must clean the wall and remove any debris or mildew from the surface. Do not use extreme pressure when washing, however, as it can damage the wall and mortar.

Before applying the seal, it’s best to do so during moderate weather conditions so that the sealant dries properly and no additional moisture gets trapped inside. The sealant can then be applied with a pump spray followed by spreading it evenly with a paint roller until the whole surface is covered. When ready, apply a second coat and let dry. A proper sealing job should protect your external brick walls from extreme weather and temperatures, and increase their lifespan significantly.

Interior Brick Wall Maintenance

Brick walls inside the home aren’t susceptible to the forces of nature, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect proper maintenance. Like exterior brick walls, proper cleaning is a top priority. For interior brick walls, first use a brush, broom, and/or vacuum to remove any dust, cobwebs, or other dry debris from the surface.

You can then use a commercial brick cleaning solution or make one of your own out of cream of tartar and water. Other DIY cleaning solutions include vinegar or baking soda. Proper measurements and mixtures can be found online.

As with the outside, you can also seal internal brick walls. After that, you might want to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your walls with some interior painting work. Because most brick is naturally beautiful, some homeowners choose to simply stain their brick walls to enhance and deepen their color. Others choose to paint the walls with color or shades of black or white. Whatever the case, the wall will maintain its brick texture – and if it’s cleaned and sealed beforehand, it should last a long time to come.

Is Painting Brick a Good Idea?

Painting external or internal brick walls can certainly look great, but it is always somewhat risky. Pro painters might warn you that painting a brick wall can run the risk of trapping moisture between the paint and the pores of the wall. However, if the surface is properly washed and sealed, this is hardly an issue. If you’re still concerned, however, hire a painting service.

When it’s time to paint, be sure to use an acrylic or latex paint. For exterior home painting, lighter colors will absorb less heat and protect the integrity of the paint and the wall itself. For the inside, you have a bit more flexibility in terms of color choice.

Brick walls can and should last a homeowner a very long time. You can increase this lifespan with proper cleaning and sealing. For repairs and painting services, contact All American Painting Plus, Inc. We’ve been serving homeowners and business owners of the Northern Virginia region for more than 25 years. Call us at 703-620-5563, or email us at info@aapplus.com for an estimate!

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