Painting one-side of concrete block wall in backyard (pic)


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Old 03-26-14, 08:52 PM
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Painting one-side of concrete block wall in backyard (pic)

So I live in Arizona where the grey concrete block walls are ubiquitous (see pic). My wife in her eternal wisdom has decided that this is unacceptable So we paint.

I thought this would be pretty straightforward but am getting bogged down in the details and dont want to screw up. This is a regular free standing wall in our backyard, that is non-retaining.

The gentleman at the Home Improvement store suggested a waterproof masonry paint. Is it okay to paint just one side of the wall?
I am concerned that water will enter the un-painted side of the wall and ruin the paint.

What paint should I use that will still maintain the porosity of the concrete?Do I need a masonry primer? Can I just white-wash it?

I might be over-thinking this. But any pointers would be helpful.

thanks!
 
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Old 03-27-14, 04:40 AM
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Generally it's best to paint both sides [including the top] of a wall like that. Moisture passing thru the masonry can lift the paint over time. But assuming your location stays fairly dry you may be able to get by with just painting 1 side and the top.

To paint you need to start with a coat of blockfill, it's a thick primer that fills/seals the pores in the block. You'd then apply a coat or 2 of exterior latex paint over. House paints fair better than most masonry paints. I wouldn't use elastromeric paint [waterproof] on only 1 side of any wall that has exposure to both sides! An old timey white wash would likely just disappear into the bare block but I suppose you could get by with just applying 1 coat of a solid latex stain [it wouldn't need a primer]
 
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Old 03-27-14, 05:16 AM
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Like most similar walls in the SW, painting both sides is not possible or practical. The other side faces someones home or property or the street. Developments and cities also do not want to have "checkerboard" of different colors facing the public.

Do you want to be responsible for the added(doubled) maintenance?

Using a good clear stain that is pigmented could be an option and has been used to even out the shading in the wall. Often it is also done using a clear waterproof coating (not from a big box store).

Dick
 
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Old 03-27-14, 06:43 AM
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Thanks Marksr and Dick for your replies.

We don't get much rain here but when it does rain its fairly fierce. Dick is right, painting both sides of the wall may not be feasible. I have to check with the city.

Dick, Any pointers on where would I get the stain if not a big box store. So waterproof is not water tight right? I just learnt the difference between paint and stain. And yes, I think stain would definitely be the way to go here. Are there any stains specific to concrete?

thanks again for your time, guys.
 
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Old 03-27-14, 06:53 AM
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I'm not sure a concrete stain would work well on block, they're more tailored for concrete slabs. I'd be looking at solid latex stains. You'll always find better coatings at your local paint store versus a paint dept. Big box paint depts tend to stock their coatings based more on low price than quality. Paints stores sell the cheap stuff too so you need to make sure you go with their mid line or better. Adhesion shouldn't be a big issue with paint/stain for the block but color fading can be and the better coatings are less likely to fade.

I wouldn't be concerned with waterproofing the wall. A latex stain should allow some moisture to pass thru that side of the block.
 
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Old 03-27-14, 11:10 AM
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Thanks Marksr. A latex stain it is. I've located a Sherwin-Williams near me, will go in and see if they have specific recommendations. Thanks for your valuable help!
cheers
 
 

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