pressure washing damage to flagstone???

by dan
(va)

rings around stone perimeter

rings around stone perimeter

rings around stone perimeter
rings around stone perimeter
no rings-- looks good here

Hi, I have attached 3 pics, the first is of an area that looks OK with the sealer applied, the next 2 have the rings on the stone perimeter.


I think the rings are damage from where the mason was trying to presure wash some of the dirty joints clean before he sealed the patio, since all the rings are on the perimeter near where he was trying to clean the joints. In one pictures you can actually see the wand marks swirled around in the stone, from the pressure washer.

He doesnt think its stone damage from the pressure washer, and wants to come out with paint thinner and acetone to test some of those stones with rings on them that are darker. He thinks its because he pressure washer a previous layer of sealer off from around the joints, and then resealed the whole patio, instead of taking the previous layer of sealer off the whole patio and then resealing...

Does this look like pressure wash damage? Should I let this guy back onto my patio with these chemicals, or should I find someone else???

THanks,-- its an acrylic/water based sealer you roll on.

Dan

Comments for pressure washing damage to flagstone???

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what? NEW
by: 2k

What did you hire him to do? Sounds like you wanted him to do extra work. If you hired him to seal the grout he did fine. If you hired to seal your patio then looks like you stopped him mid job. If pressure washing only hurts one spot or every other spot then its bad grout job or bad grout itself. I do not see anything wrong with your stones in the pictures as the first one looks like second. You should have let him test wash an area first, then when you noticed a problem at least try and figure it out, stopping someone when you have no science or data is a waste of time. I would have made you pay me then told you to find someone else.

commentors with no clue NEW
by: expert mason

You dont have damaged stone. Your flagstone has through body color, the color goes all the way through.what your seeing is your mason cleaned only the edges, with muriatic acid or detergent based cleaner to minimize damage to the stone. However flagstone is impervious to acid. You can dump it on strait and watch it, it doesnt even react. The loose lyme settled in the centers left a haze. I wash the same way however i use a acid solution over the entire surface and pressure wash it immediately until theres no residue of mortar left on the stone. The bad part is he sealed the dust in with sealer.now you will need to strip the sealer off, pressure/acid wash and then reseal. Hope all these people with no clue commenting didnt cause the poor guy not to get paid.

commentors with no clue NEW
by: expert mason

You dont have damaged stone. Your flagstone has through body color, the color goes all the way through.what your seeing is your mason cleaned only the edges, with muriatic acid or detergent based cleaner to minimize damage to the stone. However flagstone is impervious to acid. You can dump it on strait and watch it, it doesnt even react. The loose lyme settled in the centers left a haze. I wash the same way however i use a acid solution over the entire surface and pressure wash it immediately until theres no residue of mortar left on the stone. The bad part is he sealed the dust in with sealer.now you will need to strip the sealer off, pressure/acid wash and then reseal. Hope all these people with no clue commenting didnt cause the poor guy not to get paid.

grout cleaning with pressure washer does what you see NEW
by: swim pool tech

i just began to pressure wash a blue stone deck. I am from south est P.a and Baltimore area. the pressure washer who did the work had good intentions but we all know what that gets ya. this is classic grout cleaning. he wanted grout lines to look white and pretty so he spent the time going around and doing so. Howeever he didnot know he was blasting perimeter of stones and causing damage.There is your answer. We use a kirker 1300-1500 psi pressure washer. People will laugh but they think you need some pressure washer that will peel paint off from 10 feet away Bs A light wash with a muratic diluted heavily will do the job and not cause damage

Pressure Washing NEW
by: James Norris

I think that the pressure washing that we currently have takes to long. In Englewood, FL, they do things a little faster. Thanks for sharing this information. I really appreciate it.

Rings on edge of Bluestone pavers NEW
by: Paul

I'm not going to comment on the pressure washer issue ... you have lots of info there. The rings are a mystery and may have nothing to do with the sealer or cleaning process but may a physical property of the stone.

I just completed a 250 sq.ft. bluestone patio. The stones were laid dry on stone dust placed on 3/4" gravel (a filter cloth separated the two materials). The joints were filled with polymeric sand. After completion the surface hosed down (not pressure washed). Spots of hardened polymeric sand were removed with ordinary vinegar. The stone was then sealed with DryTreat sealer which darkened the stone slightly but did not change the surface appearance (no gloss or wet look which means the sealer is sitting on the surface).

About 40% of the pavers have rings on them. It's a mystery to everyone and I'm hoping time will mellow out he appearance.

he used the wrong tip
by: DFW Deck & Fence Restoration

I work on all types of flagstone and this is a common mistake here in Dallas. Most home owners have their lawn care crews do their pressure washing and it's comparable to having your dentist do open heart surgery. He might have told you he used a 25 degree tip, but those are markings of a 0 degree tip. This tip should never be used except in the hands of a professional. To fix the problem, he needs to come in with a tip commonly called a turbo nozzle. It's a 0 degree tip that rotates in a circular motion and is used to clean concrete and stone. He has to be careful with this tip as well as it will leave marks if he works too fast or too close to the surface. It's strong enough to remove paint and will tear wood apart if used incorrectly. If that doesn't work, you can try a combination of sand blasting and pressure washing. It adds sand to a pressure washer and I use it sometimes to remove paint from bricks and stone and even graffiti. You might even try soda blasting, which is a little more delicate than sand blasting and won't tear up the flagstone like sand blasting does. A good turbo nozzle will cost you over $100, but it is worth the investment. I have 6 of them, and depending on the surface I'm working on, each one works a little different than the rest. Good luck!

Hi!
by: carrie

Hi, I think the pressure company that you hired used strong pressure while using chemicals. It would be best to look for someone that could do the job well according to your expectations, take time to browse on the internet plus seek product reviews from the person you have known...

Exact same problem
by: Anonymous

Dan - I have a post on this site (Discoloration of Flagstone) with pictures and my problems looks identical to yours. I just completed a brand new patio with the PA Bluestone and the entire surface is damaged. We ran into so many problems with the masonry company that it was pressure washed a total of eight times and all of the stones are damaged. My general contractor is very slow to respond and has stated that the discoloration will eventually go away. This answer is not satisfactory to me. Please tell me where you are with this situation and if anything has worked to clean and seal the stones or if a solution has been reached. My email is anne.grove@cox.net. Thank you, Anne

thanks
by: Anonymous

david and hans-
thanks for the reply.

so the solution (if there is pressure wash damage) is to remove the sealer and damage the whole patio the same way so that it all matches and is all damaged??? So basically to pressure wash damage the whole patio so its all damaged and therefore matches? I am not sure I like the sound of that...or how that would feel on your hands/feet (if not sealed). ALso, I woudl be worried about the surfaces of the stone getting even more flaky or losing chunks/layers/delaminating from so much pressure wash...

the sealer was sika gard high gloss sealer. I called the manufacturer (sika) and they said to remove with a environmentally friendly water based paint stripper.

As for the leeching of the stone into the grout from the sealer, i think you are right!!! It must be from the sealer, because there was no leeching noticed until after the seal was done.

Is there anything that can be done to whiten the grout once the sealer has been removed? I know you like prosoco, but do they or even aldon have anything to whiten/clean mortar joints in a patio? Could he regrout really thin??

p.s. is it possible you can just email me directly in case i have any more questions instead of bringing this thread back from the dead?


thanks,
Dan

thought it over
by: David and Hans

Hi Dan,

My dad and I looked over the pictures and read the past commentary to try to give you the best assessment that we could come up with.

First off, from what we can see, it is apparent that the pressure washer caused some type of damage. Those swirls happen from pressure washing and we've done that before too if the nozzle is too close to the stone. We've cancelled the swirls by going back and forth on flagstone and smoothing it out. We don't know if that will work on Pennsylvania Bluestone. We did one pressure washing job on bluestone before, but we didn't have any problems.

Secondly, we don't think that paint thinner or the acetone is a good solution for removing the old sealer. There are products out there specifically designed to do that. We've never had to do that, so we suggest you call Prosoco at 1-800-255-4255 and ask them for the right chemical. They are the cleaning/chemical company we have used for years for sealing and cleaning.

If you need a complete defintive answer, then you'll have to repeat the whole process of staining, pressure washing, and paint thinner. To do that, you'll need some leftover stone to test it on.

Last week we possibly suggested sand blasting, but now that we know that it's Pennsylvania Blue Stone, we're not certain of the results. In Colorado we work with sandstone and it lends itself better to sand blasting.

You need to consult with a stoneyard in your area that knows your stone and could suggest a solution.

We noticed that there was leeching from the stones into the joints. That could have happened depending on the sealer that he used, but we can not be certain of that. We know that urethane based sealers could cause efflorescence and bleeding of stone, but we don't know what he did.

We don't know of any solutions for leeching because we have never had to deal with that, however, Prosoco or some other chemical company might have some products for that.

We can't comment on what you should tell your mason, but don't let him do anything with your patio until he tests it out on some spare stone. You need to call Prosoco, consult with some local stoneyards, and maybe some other chemists and hopefully they'll have some better solutions for you.

Great luck with your project and if you are able to find a solution for the leeching, then please let us know. I'll write an article that could help out others.

Take care,

David and Hans

pressure tip
by: dan

The pressure washer he has is some john deere 3300 psi thing he got from lowes/home depot. Does that mean whenever its on, its at 3300 psi, as long as the throttle is pushed to the rabbit (high)?

The tip he used was green, which is 25 degrees. He told me he also cleans his truck with that so its pretty safe?

Looks like he wants to come out in a week with some paint stripper. He says it goes on like gel.

We are goign to try to test a stone with it. He said might need to wipe with acetone after the stipper in case the sealer leaves a gummy residue, but he thinks the discoloration is not pressure wash damage but just bad sealer job by him.

I am trying to figure out what recourse I have if its all pressure wash damaged. Its over 300 sq ft of flagstone set on 4" concrete reinforced with fiber.

Is there a product to help with the pressure wash damage, or do the stones need to all be replaced? I dont see how he will replace all teh stones!!! thats a lot of labor and money!

I hope davids dad has some good advice!

PRESSURE WASHER DAMAGE
by: Richard..Calcasieu Stone

IF HE HAD 3300 PSI AND A GREEN TIP NO DOUBT THE DAMAGE WAS ON ACCOUNT OF THAT...THEN HAVING THE TIP A SHORT DISTANCE FROM THE STONE DIDN'T HELP EITHER...

EVEN WITH A GREEN TIP AND 3300 PSI IF YOU HOLD THE WAND BACK ABOUT 12 INCHES YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE HAD THAT MUCH DAMAGE.

I'VE TAKEN THE TOP LAYER OF FINISHED CONCRETE OFF WITH A GREEN TIP AND 3300 PSI...IT'S AMAZING WHAT DAMAGE THESE MACHINES CAN DO IN THE WRONG HANDS..

VERY RARELY DO WE USE OVER 2,000 PSI EXCEPT ON STEEL BOAT HULLS TO REMOVE BARNACLES AND RUST. THEN WE REGULATE THE PRESSURE TO 5,000 PSI WHAT SIZE NOZZLE YOU USE IS THE TRICK...THAT'S WHY WE HAVE 6 DIFFERENT TYPES...FROM THE BLACK CHEMICAL TIP TO THE DOUBLE RED 0 DEGREE TIP.

DAVIDS DAD WILL BE ABLE TO SHED SOME LIGHT ON WHAT STEPS YOU CAN TAKE NEXT.

RICHARD

pressure washing goof up
by: Richard..Calcasieu Stone

Along with our stone yard, I have a pressure washing company. Looks like he might have used the wrong size tip in cleaning...and with that it shows he should have regulated his pressure down quite a bit..

When we clean our patios after installation we use a feather tip(45 degree tip) then regulate the pressure from 5,000 psi to around 600 psi...then we still hold the wand back about 12 to 18 inches...so as not to have any pressure spikes.

As what to do next? I'm not sure. Staining the stone to even the color? Definitely a second opinion. Good luck

I'll ask.
by: David

Dear Dan,

I'll show my dad the pictures this weekend and see what his opinion is.

I'll comment when I get an answer.

Take care,

David

also...
by: dan

Should I ask for my money back from the guy who did this? My patio was only 2 months old before this. It had a border installed which created a lot of dust, so the guy wanted to power wash and seal it so I said ok.

Is there anything to be done to repair the stone if it has been damaged by him? Will it ever be normal or does it have to be replaced?

All this for a 2 month old patio!!!

thanks,

dan

Get a second opinion
by: David

Dear Dan,

You need to get a second opinion before you allow him to do anything else. It appears to me that there was damage from the pressure washing.

I'll see my dad this weekend and I'll ask him what he thinks.

Take care,

David

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