I have a dark red brick house. On the back side of my house I seem to have an issue with efflorescence on the brick. So I did some research and someone mentioned using muratic acid or some form of muratic acid diluted in water. Brush it on there and rinse it throughly.

So I bought this stuff: http://www.amazon.com/Sunnyside-Corp-61032-Green-Muriatic/dp/B002MRC49E/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1300315774&sr=8-2-spell

I did just that and it was gone for a good month. I thought it did it! Within the next month it started to reappear so I did the same thing, scrubbed it with this "Green Envy" cleaner and then rinsed it with water, again it was clean and beautiful for a good month. Winter came and now spring is approaching and finally the snow has melted in Michigan. I look again at my brick and the efflorescence is there again!

How do I get rid of this stuff? I have also tried white vinegar, and that didnt do anything!

Edit It seems that ever since I got my patio deck out back this has happened. Its a pretty high patio with pavers, they had to put a lot of water on the crushed concrete and they then put the pave base and finally the pavers. About 3 months later the efflorescence seemed to appear on the wall in front of the patio. So could this be the issue? What could be causing this and how to get rid of it?

Also I already did search this forum, and I've read the one post but that did not work for me. I was hoping to get better / more answers. (See comments section).

  • possible duplicate of How can I treat brick efflorescence? – ChrisF Mar 16 '11 at 23:04
  • @ChrisF - I read that post and it did not help me, as you see in my post I said I've tried vinegar so I'd like more information. Please don't vote to close a valid post. – JonH Mar 16 '11 at 23:13
  • it would have been better had you made that clear in your question. Unfortunately I can't undo a vote to close. – ChrisF Mar 16 '11 at 23:15

You might want to try a water repellent like MasonrySaver® to seal the brick. Since you are in a climate with freeze thaw cycles, you'll want to be careful which type of sealer you use. If the sealer locks water in the brick you could end up with damage to the brick, MasonrySaver says it allows water vapor to escape so this should not be a problem.

You might want to check with some local masons or home builders, to get recommendations on products that are suitable for your area. If this is a newer home you could contact the builder and ask if the brick was sealed, and with which product.

*I am in no way affiliated with MasonrySaver®, it is just one example of a brick water repellent that I found with a quick Google search. I'm sure there are other (possibly superior) products available. Do your research before using any product.

  • This worked, I purchased some stuff from a local dealer here in michigan and it got rid of the efflorescence. – JonH Jun 3 '11 at 18:53
  • Update: just an update from what I thought worked, seems it has returned but much less. There definately isnt any structure damage causing this, we've had a lot of bad weather in michigan and as soon as it all dries up it seems to reduce the amount of efflorescence. There really isnt a clear answer on efflorescence - i didnt have to tell you that, a simple google search will drive you nuts :). – JonH Jun 14 '11 at 19:26
  • Update 2: Finally found a local dealer that sells the remover but with that I got a gallon of the brick sealer. After I sealed the brick it no longer appears. – JonH Dec 7 '11 at 20:24

Anytime there is case of reoccurring efflorescence, it is important to find the source of the water or moisture that is penetrating or passing out of the brick. If the brick is subject to a lot of splashing, any salts etc used for ice control, that could be a cause. This link will give you a very good reference and some possible treatments. Good Luck. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efflorescence

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