Don't Power Wash Brick and Stonework

Published by Millennial1 on April 28, 2007 - 3:01am
After installing brick, many masonry contractors will insist on washing it with a mild solution. Washing the brick is not a bad idea, but DO NOT LET THEM POWER/PRESSURE WASH IT. Most of the people who use power washers really get carried away. They keep the power washer wand in one place too long and this removes the brick glazing. See the power washing video to see exactly what we mean. You can see the result, especially the diagonal streak, above the left window. Power washing or pressure washing can actually damage the surface of the brick and and also weaken it. This ultimately detracts from it's natural beauty, which you are paying for to begin with. In our case, we specifically told our contract not to power wash the brick. Of course they assured us that they wouldn't. Then after we went to the grocery store we returned and get what? They were POWER WASHING the brick and really messed it up in several places. The mason assured us that there was no harm, However, the manufacturer, Continental Brick, recommended using a garden hose to wash the brick. This probably would not be as much fun as the power washer though or quicker. Contintental Brick specifically said that power washing could remove the glazing on the front of the brick. The same holds true for stone and brick retainer walls and walkways. Use a garden hose and when in doubt read the manufacturers paper work or talk to the brick or stone supplier and not the mason.