Each year, we all have home improvement projects to maintain and increase the value of our homes. If you have a brick home and want a new look that lasts, consider limewashing! Limewashed brick has many unique benefits. For one, it is non-allergic, antiseptic, and antifungal. Added bonus? Limewash is also a fire retardant and it helps delay and protects your home from wear and tear. It also protects against mosquito larvae, who knew?
What is Limewash on Brick?
When a paint has been used since ancient times, you know it’s built to last. Limewash paint was formulated ages and ages ago. It is natural and made from limestone that has been crushed, burnt and slaked with water to make lime putty. Then, the lime putty is matured for many months, before being diluted with water, creating limewash.
Unlike paint, limewash absorbs with porous surfaces (like brick), and reacts to carbon dioxide, hardening, and forming protective crystalline calcium carbonate, which assists in its protective qualities. Traditionally, tallow or raw linseed oil is added to give limewashing it’s water-shedding qualities, making it a wonderful protectant for your home’s exterior.
How Long Does Limewash on Brick Last?
Limewash on brick tends to last about five to ten years in its brightest, whitest shade. That said though because it is a natural product made from real, slaked lime, it will slowly patina with time depending on sunlight and weather. Many customers report that they enjoy the look of the fading, only needing a new coat every ten years or minor touch-ups at the very least.
It is a very durable and lasting due to its nature of calcifying to the brick, and protects your brick home exterior while adding an absolutely stunning new look (that looks classically vintage). Limewash is unique and different than paint in that it allows moisture to be released by working naturally with your brick. A timeless and beautiful choice for historical homes, or standard “modern” homes that just need a bit of character.
The process of Limewashing/Whitewashing brick
Before limewashing your brick home or any brick areas on your home, an absorbency test is done to determine how well your bricks will take to the new limewash. When a little water is poured on the brick, we look for the brick to absorb it and not run down towards the ground.
After we determine it’s absorbency, we then begin to power wash your home. Like with all of our exterior painting and limewashing projects, a complete and thorough power washing is conducted to remove debris.
After the power washing is done and the house has had a day to dry, we begin by prepping all areas with paper and plastic around the areas we want to protect. Limewashing brick is a messy process! Because limewash is so thin (like water) it tends to splatter and drip in a lot of places. Don’t worry though, it all is removable and is power washed daily or at the end of the project!
Dilution! Dilution is key to the limewashing process. Most of the time, we dilute the limewash with a 50/50 ratio of limewash to water. Limewash is too thick to apply to brick straight out of the gallon!
All limewashing that New Perspective painting does is carefully hand-applied to all surfaces. This process helps ensure that the limewash goes on exactly how thin or thick we need it to. We prepare the brick by getting it wet before application. When the brick is damp or wet as we apply it, the brick better absorbs the limewash and helps the spread rate.
The Benefits of Limewash
There are so many! In Denver, many homes are historical, or built with brick, leaving a few less options as far as exterior home color choices (until…. limewash!).
- Environmentally friendly
- Natural look
- Protective qualities
- Fading looks natural and lovely (unlike paint)
- Tried and true aesthetics for centuries
- Earthy color variations to match your style
- True, authentic slaked lime
- Unique character for your home!
- Curb appeal
How Much Does it Cost to Limewash a Brick House?
The cost to limewash depends on: the square footage of the areas, difficulty accessing areas, type of brick, pattern desired, brick absorbancy, and area that you want to be limewashed. Prices can range between $3,000 to $10,000, or more depending on these factors. You can also stick to sections of your home to save on cost, and many homeowners like to also limewash paint inside the home (such as exposed brick walls and fireplaces).
Below are the pre-tinted limewash colors that can be bought directly from Romabio. Keep in mind, that certain off white colors can be made custom from the factory also!
Try getting an estimate from a local, top recommended company experienced in limewashing, like New Perspective Painting.
About New Perspective Painting in Denver, Colorado
Limewashing experts, we are a residential and commercial painting company in Denver, Colorado (serving Lakewood, Littleton, Golden, Arvada, Westminster, Wheat Ridge, Aurora, Centennial, and the surrounding areas).
Painting your home, staining brick, or limewashing should be done by a trusted painting professional. New Perspective Painting offers estimates for limewashing, painting, brick staining, cabinet painting and more. Just click for a limewashing estimate for your home.