Understanding Concrete Efflorescence How It Leads To Unsightly Foundation Walls
At Permaseal, we answer client queries about concrete issues every single day. Just about the most frequent, and most perplexing for home owners, is exactly what they should do once they find layers of white-colored, flaky deposits on their basement wall surfaces. This particular powder is very common on concrete types of surface -- specifically in cellars and crawl spaces -- and it is known as efflorescence.
What Causes Efflorescence?
Cement is a permeable material -- and it has been since the day it dried. Because of this, it'll accept moisture from the dirt outdoors, gradually releasing some of this moisture into your dwelling. This is most significant reasons that basements are notoriously moist, humid spaces.
As this moisture passes through your concrete, it brings a little portion of minerals from the soil outdoors in conjunction with it, combined with the lime in the cement itself. When it evaporates into your cellar, it leaves these minerals behind. With time, they create the white, flaky powder that you notice on your walls today.
Cleaning up Efflorescence from Basement Walls
There are many products currently available which are specifically aimed at removing stains from cement wall surfaces and flooring. One great way to remove efflorescence will be to rent a power washer from a local home improvement store and to combine it with these chemicals to effectively blast efflorescence off of the cement.
For a more economical solution, however, you could substitute these custom made chemicals with a solution of chlorine bleach. Coupled with a power washer, pressure washer, or just by applying with a scrub broom and some hard work, you ought to be able to thoroughly clean off the majority of efflorescence problems.
Phosphoric acid could also be used not only to remove efflorescence powder but also rust, grime, stains, and hard water deposits. However, phosphoric acid, as well as other chemicals, should be used carefully and with great attention.
Shielding Your Basement from Efflorescence
At Permaseal, we recommend protecting your concrete areas from efflorescence before an issue arises. However, if you thoroughly clean already affected cement, protection can be applied after.
Our encouraged way to prevent efflorescence is by sealing your concrete walls with a concrete sealer. This product works deep in the pores of your cement walls and flooring to create a glass-like silicate bond in the cement.
This barrier puts a stop to the movement of moisture through the basement walls and floor surfaces, protecting your basement from both efflorescence and also the water vapor transmission associated with basement moisture.
Concrete treatments can be applied as a spray, roller, paint brush, and also other ways, and it dries out in 2-4 hours. It is safe for indoor use as well as outdoor usage, and can protect your basement in many different ways.