Paying the price of painted bricks!

Old 02-28-07, 03:17 PM
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Paying the price of painted bricks!

The previous owners painted the chimney on our house red. We've lived there for about 3 years and it was sorta funny to have a big red chimney, but now we have issues. The faces of a lot of the bricks are starting to detach and fall off. I'd assume it's from trapped moisture.

Does this pose any structural threat? Can I just ignore this problem for a while? Anything i can do to save the rest of the bricks faces?

Old 02-28-07, 05:06 PM
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Most likely, the trapped moisture is the cause of the faces falling off. Trapped moisture will move paint off of wood as well. It it not likely that this will be a structural problem, since the loss of the face is small compared to the totality of the brick and its placement in the wall.

Removing the paint or solving the moisture problem would be two extremes of preserving the remaining bricks. Paint tends to be permanent on brick due to the porosity. The paint can be stripped. You may be able to score the surface to allow the moisture to transpire. It may be that sealing the entire structure on the outside would stop the moisture from entering the masonary to start with.

Hope this helps.
Old 02-28-07, 05:59 PM
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Actually, losing the face on exterior brick in a freeze-thaw environment signals the rapid decomposition of the structural integrity of the masonry composition. That is to say, once the hard fired surface is gone, it is easier for moisture to penetrate and further degrade the brick. Replacement will be required sooner than later.

Never paint brick!

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