Brick Efflorescence 
Removing & Preventing

Brick Efflorescence Analysis 

  • Firstly: There must be water-soluble salts present somewhere in the wall.
  • Secondly: There must be sufficient moisture in the wall to render the salts into a soluble solution.
  • Thirdly: There must be a path for the soluble salts to migrate through to the surface where the moisture can evaporate, thus depositing the salts which then crystallize and cause efflorescence.

All three conditions must exist. 

If any one of these conditions is not present, then efflorescence cannot occur.

Even though the efflorescence problem is complex, it is not difficult to prevent.

Although no economically feasible way exists to totally eliminate any one of these three conditions, it is quite simple to reduce all three and make it nearly impossible for efflorescence to occur.

Brick Efflorescence is the stubborn problem that has caused confusion and trouble for masonry since the first time it appeared thousands of years ago on ancient masonry walls. Efflorescence is normally the white, powdery scum that can appear on masonry walls after construction but can also be brown green or yellow, depending on the type of salts. Nobody likes it, nobody wants it on their walls, but occasionally this persistent problem appears. 

Great deals of time, money and effort have been spent trying to solve the difficulties efflorescence generates. Many test programs have been developed and numerous attempts have been made to eliminate this problem. Unfortunately, nothing has proven 100% effective against this very stubborn problem. However, even though no surefire cure has been discovered, a great deal has been learned about how efflorescence works and how to prevent it, and if preventive measures are inadequate, How To Clean Brick or remove the efflorescence if it does appear.

This article explains the mechanics of white efflorescence, how to help prevent efflorescence and some traditional methods used to remove efflorescence from new walls. 

Three conditions must exist for efflorescence to occur:

  1. Water-soluble salts must be present.
  2. Moisture must be available to transform salts into a soluble solution.
  3. Salts must be able to move through a material to its surface. The moisture will then evaporate and cause the salts to crystallize, resulting in efflorescence.


Water, rain and snow are the primary sources of moisture and may impact the amount of efflorescence. Condensation, groundwater wicking from interior or exterior also may affect the degree of moisture generation.

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