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January 3 - January 9, 2011

Considering cost, productivity, and thoroughness, what is the best way to remove paint from cement blocks (CMUs)?

Selected Answers

From David Grove of Shaw Nuclear Power Services on January 10, 2011:
CMU's can be damaged easily and the final condition such as being left exposed, or painted, or location that will allow different removal methods to be used, was not identified. If the CMU's are in a location where pressure washing is possible, then I would suggest utilizing a stripper followed by a pressure wash (<5000 PSI). It will help to cover the stripper with plastic to reduce evaporation since the stripper will only work wet. Allow it to work per instructions and reapply in spots not fully stripped. Ensure that all of the stripper is removed and the surface is within the correct pH for the coating materials to be applied and fully dry, if repainting is required. Ensure that the existing coatings, stripper, pressure washing, waste disposal, and repainting will meet the local and state safety and environmental criteria / regulations before initiating the work.

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