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Brick and Brickwork Cleaning

The purpose of cleaning is to remove contamination while causing little or no damage to the bricks or mortar. This can be hard to achieve since the dirt can be embedded within the surface of the bricks and  joints. Using chemical methods or aggressive high pressure water washing on old brickwork can cause more damage than leaving the bricks dirty.

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Sympathetic Brick Cleaning Methods

The development of air vortex blast cleaning using gentle abrasives enabled old brickwork to be cleaned with less damage. Soda blasting is one of our preferred methods of revitalising your brickwork. This uses compressed air to fire specially graded sodium bicarbonate crystals at the brickwork in order to remove surface deposits.

Soda blasting is particularly suited to the removal of:

  • organic and lime based paints
  • lime scale
  • carbon soiling
  • bitumen
  • bird droppings
  • algal blooms

Soda blasting does not damage the substrate and is environmentally friendly. Sodium bicarbonate is much softer than bricks so it  does not act as an abrasive to the surface. It works from the outside in, gently removing successve layers of the contamination until the surface of the brick is reached. Traditional methods are less controlled and will remove the layer of soiling in one fell swoop, damaging the surface of your brickwork.

APT is the leading Soda Blasting contractor in the UK, call us on 01495 308 048 for further information.

Where the main problems are with moss, algae and fungi, the APT Hot Box system is perfect. This was designed by our site operatives working with engineers and uses low pressure steam at high temperature. It is a very efficient brick cleaning method that cuts down on labour costs and therefore it is a highly cost effective option for our clients. Other benefits include:

  • quick drying as the steam is superheated and the low volume of water needed to create the steam means very little water is left on the surface of the bricks
  • can be used in all seasons as the low pressures used do not force water droplets into any pores in the bricks, reducing the chances of freeze-thaw damage
  • low surface pressure prevents damage to soft brickwork
  • high temperatures kill the spores of mosses, algae and fungi meaning that no chemical inhibitors need to be used either before or after cleaning in order to retard re-growth

How to carry out brick masonry and stone cleaning using the APT 'Hot Box' Method

The APT ‘Hot Box’ system was designed using similar principles as the well-known DOFF steam cleaning system as well as the tensid cleaning system for stonework. These systems use low pressure and high temperature steam cleaning and have numerous advantages over dry or wet stone and brick cleaning.

The New APT super-heated  steam cleaning system was recently released to deliver optimum cleaning of all stone and brickwork cleaning services without problematic dust creation of traditional blast cleaning services. The low pressure steam cleaning hot box:

  • Is faster drying as the steam is superheated and the low volumes of water needed to create the steam leaves very little water on the surface
  • Can be used in all seasons as it operates at low pressures so no water droplets are forced into the stonework's pores and flaws reducing the chances of freeze-thaw damage and spoiling
  • Exerts low surface pressure preventing damage to soft stonework
  • Has high temperatures which kill the spores of mosses and algae
  • Chemical inhibitors need to be used either before or after cleaning to retard re- growth

At APT we believe our new highly effective design improves on the already very efficient DOFF system and Torc cleaning with our 'Hot Box'. It was designed by our site operatives working with engineers and it has the best attributes of the DOFF cleaning system but utilises higher steam values, has extra control and a more consistent delivery of steam over longer hose runs for those high lift access cleaning works. It is efficient and cuts down on labour costs making it is a more cost-effective option for our clients.

Skilled Operators

But the skill lies as much with the operator as the method. The machine can't differentiate between sound and weaker brickwork; it can't differentiate between soiling and substrate; it cannot tell if a surface is hard or soft.

A trained operator, such as our APT cleaning technicians can.

Our staff undergo a rigorous training programme before they are sent out 'into the field' to clean your bricks and follow continued professional development courses as new methods, materials and equipment are developed.

Stress Free Brick Cleaning Services ...

Contact APT now on 01495 308 048 for a no-obligation chat about brick cleaning and to find out how we can benefit your project. We will provide everything required to minimise disruption and inconvenience to your daily routine, including 'out-of-hours' working where necessary. We carry out a full risk assessment and ensure that the project conforms to Health and Safety regulations.

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