Cinder blocks are not as popular as they used to be, but this is not to say they are totally out of use in our modern world. Many households still use them to build small structures within or outside their apartment. Cinder blocks are lightweight and they don’t cost as much as a concrete block.
A cinder block is similar in appearance to a concrete block. It’s hard to tell the difference between both, mainly because they are made from the same material. However, a cinder block, in addition to cement, is made of cinder which makes it lightweight.
The plain look of a cinder block can be drab and unattractive. For anyone who cares about the beauty of their walls, cinder blocks don’t come off as a good choice for raw materials to use.
The good news is that you can transform your cinder blocks to make them look like the best thing ever. There are many different techniques you can implement to improve the appearance of your cinder block wall. One of the most common options is to modify it to appear like a stone wall.
Now, if you consider making it look like a stone, you’ve got yourself a brilliant idea. You save yourself the cost and stress of building an actual stone wall and still get the aesthetic look.
- 4 colors of Latex paint
- Flat paintbrush
- Paint roller
- Paint tray
- Pump Sprayer
- Trisodium phosphate
Of course, you can’t just start by applying paint to your wall therefore you need to ensure that it is ready for painting.
The first thing to do is clean the wall surface thoroughly. When your cinder block wall has been exposed for a while, it will absorb dirt which will give it an unsightly look.
You should also look to eliminate moisture in cinder block walls because a wet wall is a breeding ground for unwanted plants. If you do not eliminate moisture, your wall surface may become a home for mosses.
Here’s a simple procedure to follow:
- Mix 1 gallon of hot water and 1 cup of TSP in a pump sprayer. Ensure the TSP dissolves in the water.
- Spray the TSP solution on the cinder block surface until it is saturated, letting it soak for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Use a stiff-bristled brush to scrub the blocks and rinse with water.
- Leave to dry. This can take up to 24 hours depending on the weather condition.
A primer is essential for painting cinder block surfaces. It makes adhesion easy and reduces the number of coats you’ll need for your overcoat. An acrylic primer is a preferred choice since it is durable and dries fast.
Apply the primer the same way you will apply paint. Swap between using a roller and a brush when you’re working with the edges of the wall.
A great palette to give the illusion of stones is one that contains cream, tan, brown, and gray as they resemble the colors of natural stone. You can also mix two colors on one cinder block. Paint on the blocks randomly with those colors. Avoid painting the grout since stone walls usually have it.
If you’re painting over painted cinder block walls, you can skip step 1. If you have peeling paint on cinder block walls, you have to first scrape off the parts that are peeling, so you can have a smooth and even result.
There are other ways to transform a cinder block wall asides making it look like a stone wall. Sometimes this transformation is not necessarily an aesthetic one, but to improve the durability of the blocks when used outdoors. This involves making your wall waterproof.
One of the ways to strengthen and protect your cinder block wall is by making it waterproof. The most common way to waterproof a cinder wall block is by applying paint.
- Masonry waterproofing paint
- Masonry paint brush
- Expanding hydraulic cement
- Clean your walls and eliminate moisture
Before you can improve your cinder block walls, you need them in clean and dry condition. You can achieve this by scraping off any peeling paint on cinder block walls and dusting off dirt or debris.
- Patch existing holes
The next step is to seal any holes in the wall using expanding hydraulic cement and leave it for 24 hours to dry.
- Cover the wall with finishing coats
The final step involves painting the wall. The wall will need some finishing coats to enhance durability. You may need two or three finishing coats to improve its waterproof quality. Make sure the paint covers the cinder block thoroughly.
Maintaining your wall is also important, and you’ll need to re-paint them after some time. Most paint brands advise customers to apply a new coating every 3 to 5 years. This may be more or less, depending on use and the type of brand. For instance, you may need to add a new coat to your exterior cinder block paint in a quicker time compared to indoor paints.
The ways to make a cinder block wall look good include painting, using textured paint, draping fabric along the wall, applying cement to the wall surface, attaching stone veneer, and applying stucco.
Spray painting cinder block walls could also be a good idea. You can implement simple designs or create murals of your favorite objects.
If you prefer the sight of nature on your wall, climbing plants are excellent options to choose from. You can use wire or twine to space your plants and give your wall a more defined look.
The simplest way to do this is to apply surface bonding cement on your walls to create a concrete finish. Concrete will help to keep moisture out of your wall. Not only that, but it can also serve as an insulator.
Concrete creates a smooth surface on your cinder blocks if properly applied and can be left as it is, although some people may prefer to paint their walls.
No, there is no special paint made specifically for cinder block walls. Latex paint containing acrylic is a durable choice. Look out for those that are weatherproof if the cinder block wall is outdoors. For the choice of a primer, latex acrylic-based primer is a great option. It will fill up the pores and cracks in the block. It also neutralizes the pH while painting.
You need to map the pattern of bricks and then paint it with a chosen color palette. The first thing is to prepare the blocks by cleaning the dirt and dust off them. After that, prepare your blocks for painting by applying a primer. Then, apply a base coat of paint from your color palette. Map out a brick pattern on the blocks, marking out the grout. Then paint each section randomly using colors off your palette.
Concrete pigment is a popular option for anyone who desires a colored wall but prefers not to use cinder block paint. Although these two materials are similar, they are not the same. Exterior paint only protects the surface of your cinder block wall. Concrete pigment however penetrates the pores of the cinder block and interacts with the inner components of the block.
Cinder block walls may be old-fashioned but they are still useful. If you’re on a budget, but want your walls attractive, there are a good number of ways to transform them. These techniques are easy and can be completed in a short span.