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February 3 - February 7, 2014

I need to remove coatings from masonry on a historic-preservation project. What are my options for doing so without damaging the mortar joints?

Selected Answers

From VCBud Jenkins of CSCS on February 6, 2014:
I have used Products Techniques PTS-202 to remove paint in large sheets, which might work here.

From Courtney Murdock of AMT Labs on February 6, 2014:
On this historic project, you'll want to test the coating for lead-based paint. An EPA-approved swab kit is inexpensive and can be purchased online. If the test is positive for lead, you'll need to collect all effluent and follow the precautions for hazardous waste. Next, I would conduct test panels in a small, inconspicuous location using a reputable company's coating removers. You'll want to keep in mind the guidelines in the National Park Service Preservation Brief 1 - Assessing Cleaning and Water-Repellent Treatments for Historic Masonry Buildings. Copies are available online. Make sure to protect adjacent surfaces with plastic sheeting or similar. Use polyethylene or special paper made to protect the paint strippers during long dwell times. Finally, don't blast away at the mortar joints; use low psi to avoid damage.  Good luck!

From Carlos Beseler of CBS on February 5, 2014:
The best solution is to remove the damaged and old paint with paint remover. Wash the area and apply an acrylic primer sealer, and repair and fix areas or defective parts. 

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Tagged categories: Good Technical Practice; Historic Preservation; Masonry coatings; Paint and coatings removal

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