My basement is brick. Some has been painted with obvious calcification causing bulging. Some bare brick with some brick getting soft and powdery.
I am going to scrape away loose brick and calcification, then wanted to seal with a clear coat. However, I may need to use colored sealer as local Lowes doesn’t have anything clear.
Am I OK just scraping, cleaning, and painting, or is the difficulty with the outside of the house and painting as I describe futile?
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The soft and powdery brick is a problem, it needs to be stabilized. This indicates water damage and the source of the water needs to be found and fixed. Also you need to use some kind of binder/sealer before painting. This will help to stabilize the brick surface.
I used a sealer by SealKrete on badly damaged brick in the past and it really helped. It was an acrylic sealer and I applied several saturating coats before painting. Maybe Lowes has something similar. If not try your local paint store.
I don't think painting your basement brick is futile as long as both sides of the problem is taken care of. Sounds like you have a good idea for the procedure to get your brick sealed.
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