Welcome to Ask Andy, the go to place for those questions that you might need the answers too.
This month we take a special look at a question we get asked frequently.
Can you paint brick slips?
Yes you can indeed paint brick slips.
Real clay brick slips are the same as any other masonry product and can be painted so long as the surface has been prepared prior to painting.
The brick slips must be completely dry and free from dust and moisture.
A suitable primer should be used before painting the surface using masonry paint.
Breathable primers and paint are advised under all circumstances as they will help to prevent damp patches.
Preparation is key
As with any surface that is going to be painted. Brick slips need to be well prepared. The results will only be as good as the preparation work. Brushing the wall thoroughly prior to priming will allow the primer to fully bond and seal the brick surface.
The primer will also bind any loose surface debris together and make a more stable surface for the paint to adhere too.with a brush (a household broom is a good tool with its longer handle) Use a soft (brass bristles) wire brush on stubborn spots. It may be necessary to use a brick cleaning acid. Really stubborn areas of old cement or existing, flaking paint would benefit from this.
More than one coat
Unless white washing is the desired effect and you are looking to achieve an opaque look then more than one coat will be needed.
Brick slip walls are more porous than regular painted or plasterboard walls. Due to the rough and textured surfaces it can be difficult to get a full covering so multiple coats are usually required.
To get an even covering and get the surface fully coated you will need a minimum of 2-3 coats of paint. Always allow each coat to fully dry before applying additional coats.
It is worth noting that some colour choices cover a lot easier than others, make sure you always test your paint on a small area of the wall first before committing to the full area.
All about the texture
As the surface is to be covered, the colour of the clay plays no importance in the choosing of the brick slip.
The choice should be down to size and texture, and to a certain extent cost.
It can be worth opting for a cheaper product as the same appearance could be achieved once installation is complete.