How Can I Clean Soot Off Brick Fireplace & What Paint Should I Use?

December 2nd 2008
How Can I Clean Soot Off Brick Fireplace & What Paint Should I Use?

Q: Shell, I want to update the look of my brick faced fireplace and would like to know what preparation is required, in the way of cleaning the soot off the bricks the type of paint that is best for this application. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

A: In order to remove the soot from the bricks, dampen the surface with water and use Pink Solution (available from Windsor Plywood, Home Hardware Stores, London Drugs, Save-on-Foods and more).

Apply the solution right out of the bucket and use a good stiff brush to scrub the surface. Let sit for about half an hour, spray with warm water and scrub again. This waiting period allows the natural enzymes to do their job in lifting the soot. Next, sponge and rinse with warm or hot water to remove remaining dirty suds.

If you notice any residual left on the bricks at this point, use It's Just That Easy heavy duty cleaner, available at select Windsor Plywood Stores. Simply follow the directions on the bottle.

Using an exterior acrylic latex paint, give the entire facing one coat starting at the bottom and working your way up, from side to side. Use a brush to paint the mortar joints and a heavy nap roller to do the face.

Note: If the brick or stone is very porous, use a trigger spray bottle to dampen the surface before applying acrylic latex paint. This stops absorption of the paint and gives better coverage. Cloverdale ecologic acrylic latex paint is perfect for this project and is available in your choice of colours.