There's nothing quite as attractive as brick for bringing a classic look to a house. Brick veneer has become an oft-used option for modern homebuilders to reduce costs, while still retaining the look that brick offers. This construction method uses standard stick-framed walls, while placing a veneer layer of brick over the outside walls. This results in quicker (and cheaper) construction, while still giving the appearance of a full brick house. Unfortunately, this method presents inherent problems- namely, moisture entering the bricks. Therefore, waterproofing brick veneer is a necessity for all aspects of upkeep, appearance and structural stability.
When a brick veneer wall is left untreated, moisture will seep into the interior walls, especially around window frames. Additionally, the moisture will begin to degrade both the appearance and performance of the brick veneer. White stains (known as "Efflorescence") may appear on the brick; They are the result of water dissolving the natural substances in the brick. More importantly, this moisture will freeze within the brick and expand. This causes a condition known as "Spalling" and will cause the brick to crumble and flake. Waterproofing brick veneer prevents both of these conditions by preventing the buildup of moisture.
While it is true that brick veneer walls will (under the best conditions only) tend to absorb and evaporate liquid on their own- that is, without any waterproof coating-homeowners cannot ensure that their brick veneer can always handle the demands that the environment places on it. The smart and sensible solution is to take steps to prevent this moisture as much as possible, in the best manner available.
There are a countless number of products that can be found for waterproofing brick veneer. However, some of these products can do far more harm than good; all-purpose surface sealers may seem like a good idea, but they are commonly acrylic or silicone based. These materials (when applied for the purpose of waterproofing brick veneer) will prevent water vapor from escaping from the interior of the house, and will therefore cause spalling.
So what's the solution? The best waterproofing tips for brick all recommended the use of a penetrating siloxane based sealer. Siloxane is a waterproofing material for brick that allows the sealant to chemically bond itself to the brick. This process allows the brick to be impenetrable against liquid water, while still allowing it to breath- and therefore greatly reduces the chances of spalling or any other damage to your brick veneer.
By following these guidelines, you can be sure that your brick veneer is safe for years to come, and that it will provide long-lasting performance. Your house's beautiful exterior can be easily preserved by following these tips for waterproofing brick veneer.