Understanding Concrete Efflorescence How It Results In Ugly Foundation Walls
At Permaseal, we answer customer questions regarding concrete issues each day. One of the most frequent, and most puzzling for homeowners, is what they ought to do when they find layers of white-colored, flaky deposits on their basement wall surfaces. This kind of powder is very common on cement surfaces -- especially in basements and crawl spaces -- and is generally known as efflorescence.
What May Cause Efflorescence?
Cement is a porous material -- and it has been since the day it dried up. Because of this, it'll take moisture from the earth outside, progressively releasing some of this moisture into your dwelling. This is most significant reasons that basements are infamously moist, humid areas.
As this moisture passes through your cement, it brings a small percentage of minerals from the soil outside in conjunction with it, along with the lime in the concrete itself. When it evaporates in your basement, it leaves these minerals behind. With time, they create the white, flaky dust that you see on your walls today.
Washing Efflorescence from Basement Walls
There are several products currently available that are especially designed for removing stains from concrete wall surfaces and floors. One great way to remove efflorescence is to rent a pressure washer from a local hardware store and to combine it with these kinds of chemicals to effectively blast efflorescence off of the cement.
For a less expensive solution, however, you could substitute these custom made chemicals with a solution of chlorine bleach. Coupled with a power washer, pressure washer, or simply by applying with a scrub brush and some work, you will be competent to thoroughly clean off most efflorescence problems.
Phosphoric acid could also be used not only to eliminate efflorescence powder but also corrosion, grime, stains, and hard water deposits. Even so, phosphoric acid, as well as other chemicals, must be used very carefully and with great attention.
Shielding Your Basement from Efflorescence
At Permaseal, we suggest protecting your cement areas from efflorescence before a problem develops. However, if you thoroughly clean already damaged cement, protection can be applied after.
Our recommended way to protect against efflorescence is by sealing your cement walls with a cement sealer. This product works deep into the pores of your concrete walls and floor surfaces to create a glass-like silicate bond in the concrete.
This barrier stops the movement of moisture through the basement walls and flooring surfaces, protecting your cellar from both efflorescence and also the water vapor transmission linked to basement moisture.
Concrete treatments can be applied as a spray, roller, paint brush, or other ways, and it cures in 2-4 hrs. It's safe for inside use as well as external use, and can protect your basement in several ways.