How to make bricks look old

Written by larry parr
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Brick is an extremely durable building material, but, as with anything else, bricks can become damaged or new additions can be added to a home and it may be necessary to make new bricks appear to be older than they are. There are a couple of challenges that can arise. First, the colour of your new brick can be considerably different from the colour of your old bricks--even if you buy your bricks from the same manufacturer. The reason is because bricks are made from natural clay, and the the composition of that clay can change as mining moves into new areas. It is also possible that the look of the brick has changed over the years--after all, styles in brick making change with time, just as styles change in the world of cars and everything else. The easiest way to make your new brick look like your old brick is to paint everything with a layer of good, old-fashioned whitewash--and then thin out your whitewash in places to make everything look the same age.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Stiff broom
  • Old chain
  • 50-pound bag of lime
  • 4.54 Kilogram of table salt
  • Large paint-mixing tub
  • Hoe
  • Paint rollers
  • Garden hose

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Wash the wall with water and use a stiff broom to remove dirt, mud and other deposits.

  2. 2

    Hit the new brick with a heavy chain to cause small chips and give the wall a weathered look. If new bricks are near old bricks, try to match the weathered condition of the old bricks as much as possible.

  3. 3

    Make whitewash by pouring 22.7 Kilogram of lime and 4.54 Kilogram of salt into a mixing tub. Add water and mix ingredients using a hoe until the mixture is the consistency of pancake batter. Ingredients can also be mixed in an electric cement mixer.

  4. 4

    Paint the whitewash onto the brick with a roller. If an old look is desired, do not worry about thin spots. Allow the whitewash to dry overnight.

  5. 5

    Spray the whitewashed wall (after drying overnight) with a garden hose to wash off some of the whitewash. Use a nozzle if necessary to get enough pressure to thin some of the whitewash. Make sure the thinning is the same on the new bricks as on the old so the entire area matches.

Tips and warnings

  • When buying new bricks, try to match the surface look to the old bricks as closely as possible.
  • Your whitewash should last 20 to 30 years.

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