Exterior Masonry Problems & How to Solve Them

Promain understand that painting any exterior surface can be challenging. The coating not only provides valuable protection to the structure, but can contribute massively to the way the surface looks. It can be difficult to find the right masonry paint however, and when problems occur, it can be even more daunting trying to find out how to solve them. If and when these problems occur, it can be a real nightmare. With that thought in mind, we have put together this helpful guide which outlines the most common exterior masonry problems, and how to solve them.

Preparation is KEY

When decorating the exterior of a property, it is important to thoroughly plan and prepare the project. This helps to ensure that the best results are achieved. After all, the paint will only perform as well as your surface preparation. Make sure to always use the correct preparation products and tools for the job, as this will make the job a lot easier and will help to achieve a longer lasting, better looking finish.

It is also important to understand the main goal of painting exterior masonry, mainly decoration and protection. For you to achieve the very best results, protection is achieved by creating a barrier against wind, moisture and UV rays, which can all damage the surfaces and, in a worst case scenario, the actual structure itself.

Finding a problem early helps to prevent it from escalating and getting worse. If you find yourself falling victim to masonry problems with your structure, take a look at our handy guide to find out the most common problems with masonry and how best to solve them.

Masonry Problems & Solutions


Cracked, Peeling Walls

Cause: Paint can easily crack and flake, which can then expose the surface to the elements. If the dry paint splits through even one coat, it can lead to a complete failure of the paint. Early on, you might notice hairline cracks which are quickly followed by flaking. Poor quality paint, paint spread too thin when applied, poor priming or painting the exterior in cold conditions, all contribute to the flaking problems we see daily.

Solution: You may be able to correct this by removing the loose or flaking paint with a scraper, if the flaking has not already gone down to the exterior substrate. However, if the problem does expose the substrate, you will have to remove all of the paint and thoroughly re-prime and repaint the exterior, with quality exterior masonry paint.

Render Failure

Cause: Render failure can be caused by high levels of damp within the walls. Frost and moisture can become trapped between the wall and the render, which first causes hairline fractures. If these fractures are left untreated for too long, they will eventually cause the failure of the render. Ultimately, the failure of an exterior render can ultimately cause decay and damp to the interior of the building.

Solution: In a lot of cases, only localised repairs will be required. The first job is usually to gently remove any hollow, loose or cracked render. This helps to expose the bare patches of wall which require adequate time to dry out before new render is applied. You should ensure your new render is correctly protected and weatherproofed with an appropriate masonry coating or paint. However, if the render failure is widespread and too extensive, it is best to remove the render and begin again with a coating which has better durability.

Rust On Brickwork

Cause: Accidental damage to the bricks can cause rust to start appearing on your brickwork.

Solution: If rusty spots appear on your bricks, it is very important that you clean them promptly, because rust can spread rapidly and cause the deterioration of bricks. Your bricks can be made rust-free again by using simple household products, or special products designed for rust-removal. Start with the mildest cleaning product and if that fails to remove the rust, work your way up to the harsher chemicals.


Cause: Purposeful damage to the exterior of a property.

Solution: If your property has succumb to graffiti, try cleaning the graffiti off of the masonry using a power washer. However, it is best to pre-empt this and apply an anti-graffiti coating before the issue occurs. This way, if the graffiti does appear, you can remove it easily.

Waterproofing Brickwork

Cause: Although this isn’t a ‘common’ problem as such, waterproofing brickwork is an important aspect of exterior coating. If you have uncoated brickwork that you do not want coating with masonry paint, there is a solution that we can suggest.

Solution: If you would like to maintain the natural look and aesthetic of your exterior brickwork, we suggest that you take a look at our waterproofing paints. Excellent for coating exterior walls, the right waterproofing paint will help prevent water damage to your brickwork.

Mouldy Brickwork

Cause: Mouldy brickwork is often caused by damp that penetrates the exterior surface of your property. If you do not treat and remove the mould, mould growth can re-occur. This is despite a good quality re-decoration.

Solution: If the exterior surface of your property suffers from mould growth, treat it with fungicidal wash. We recommend taking a look at the range of cleaners we supply, to ensure you find the best one to suit your needs.

How Promain Can Help

Promain are ready with all relevant knowledge and products to help you with your exterior masonry problems. We have over 30 years worth of experience within the paint and coating industry. We are able to offer expert advice as to what will best suit your needs and requirements. Due to our many years within the industry, we have come across a wide array of different problems affecting exterior masonry. We have been able to offer our services when those situations have arose. We care about and value each and every one of our clients. Therefore we offer many different paints and coatings to suit your needs. Whether you require waterproofing paint, cleaners such as Glixtone Fungi-Shield Fungicidal Wash or Coo-Var Anti-Graffiti Clear Gaze Lacquer, we are here to help you.

In conclusion, please take the time to browse the rest of our website to find the other fantastic masonry paints we have available. Alternatively, contact us directly using 01462 421 333. We look forward to hearing from you.

Inspired? Read our other masonry paint blogs here:

delivery banner