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How to Renew Old Brick

Updated February 21, 2017

Old brick adds character and charm to the facade of a house or patio. Unfortunately, some old brick does not look charming; it has stains you have to remove before you can renew the surface. Bricks are strong and durable, yet their lightweight, compact size makes them a favourite building material of masons and homeowners. Begin all brick restoration by cleaning bricks with a mild detergent and a long-handled stiff broom. Wet the brick surface and dip the broom into soapy water, scrub in a circular pattern and rinse thoroughly.

Mix 6 cups water, 1 cup white vinegar and 1 cup hydrogen peroxide in a large bucket.

Wet the brick with plain water. Dip a scrub brush into the mixture; scrub away stains.

Flush thoroughly with plain water.

Don safety goggles, acid-approved respirator and rubber gloves.

Mix 1 cup muriatic acid with 10 cups water for dark-coloured bricks or 1 cup muriatic acid with 15 cups water for light-coloured brick.

Wet the brick with plain water. Dip a long-handled stiff brush into the mixture; scrub the white stains.

Rinse well with plain water.

Wear safety goggles, acid-approved respirator and rubber gloves.

Combine 1 cup muriatic acid with 10 cups water for dark-coloured bricks or 1 cup muriatic acid with 15 cups water for light-coloured brick.

Scrub the brick with the diluted muriatic acid. Rinse thoroughly.

Mix 236ml. potassium hydroxide in 1 gallon water.

Apply the mixture to the green stains with a scrub brush. Allow to sit for two or three days. Wash off with plain water.

Apply an emulsifying agent to the stains. Emulsifying agents break down oils, grease and tar.

Allow the emulsifying agent to remain on the stain according to the package directions, generally two to four hours.

Rinse well with plain water.

Apply a generous coat of paint remover with a paintbrush.

Allow the paint remover to sit on the stain for 15 to 30 minutes.

Brush the paint stain with a wire brush to remove the stain.

Mix 473ml. oxalic acid in 1 gallon water.

Brush a generous amount on the rust stains with a paintbrush.

Allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Wash off with a strong spray from a garden hose.

Tip

Wear safety gear when restoring brick.

Things You'll Need

  • Water supply
  • White vinegar
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Bucket
  • Scrub brush
  • Safety goggles
  • Acid-approved respirator
  • Rubber gloves
  • Muriatic acid
  • Long-handled stiff brush
  • Potassium hydroxide
  • Emulsifying agent
  • Paintbrush
  • Paint remover
  • Wire brush
  • Oxalic acid
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About the Author

Sal Marco began writing professionally in 2009. He has written many online home improvement articles based on his more than 20 years of experience in the home improvement and building industries. He has worked as both part of a team and as a site supervisor. Marco has a Bachelor of Science in management science from Kean University.