First things first, "Whitewash" and "Limewash" are different things - especially when it comes to removing them.

"Whitewash" is water-soluble and much easier to remove than "Limewash".

Whitewash

Whitewash

Limewash

Limewash

Removing "Limewash", however, is not so straightforward. If we have acrylic paint on "Limewash" we recommend ether "Wonder Strip" or "600GL (SoyGel)" - we have samples of each available to conduct some trials .

"Limewash" is tricky to take off. It can be tried with hot water or "Hot water pressure cleaners". If the "Limewash" is very old it becomes in part or completely like glass. It is a protection after all and maybe best left on the substrate. However if it is not like carbonated (glass), paint stripper could take the Lime Wash off as well, depending on age and type.

Another solution to take "Limewash" off is with our JOS System, it can be used to clean up any leftover "Limewash" from the surface. The JOS System is a light abrasive, micro-cleaning equipment, a chemical-free system used for the cleaning of facades, removal of graffiti, brick cleaning without damage to joints or the surface being cleaned. It will remove matter off metal, concrete, brick, timber, marble, terracotta and limestone.

There is no guaranties on any of the procedures above and we would rely on tests to give you an accurate quote or process.

"Virtually any coating can be removed from virtually any surface.... Notable exceptions are "Limewash" and cement based paints (e.g."Snowcem"). "Limewash" (not to be confused with "Whitewash") is, once cured, a thin layer of Limestone. Like cement mortars, it can be very slowly dissolved with an acidic cleaner but the process is extremely time-consuming, as the acidic cleaner product has to be continually re-applied. Removal is therefore only practicable if the "Limewash" is very thin. There is no straightforward solution, as any form of air-abrasive (blasting) or mechanical system will be destructive to the substrate - not the same as JOS.

On brickwork, try a Hydrochloric Acid Cleaner, also known as Strong Water or Muriatic Acid, (available from Bunnings) liberally applied, brushed over every two or three minutes and pressure-washed off every fifteen minutes. This is a highly corrosive product and should be used with extreme caution, otherwise it may damage your skin or the objects of your surroundings. Wet the surface thoroughly before you start, to minimize the penetration of the product into the brickwork. If you use the pressure washer to do this, it will blow off any loose areas of "Limewash" at the same time. We also recommend to use our JOS System to clean up any leftover "Limewash" from the surface.

Instructions for Hydrochloric Acid Cleaner

1. The first thing you should consider is that hydrochloric acid is a product that must be handled with extreme caution and always using adequate protection to prevent accidents and injuries to our skin. So when using it you should wear:

• Long-sleeved shirt and trousers that cover your arms and legs

• Closed shoes • Rubber gloves, a must for handling

• Goggles to protect your eyes from any drops or splashes

Also if there is vegetation in the area you plan to clean, it is desirable that you change location or adequately cover the plants or grass, as this product may be toxic to plants.

2. Muriatic acid is commonly used to clean surfaces such as brick or concrete. In both cases, you can use the same process. First cover your skin with appropriate clothing, protect your hands with gloves and eyes with goggles. In a bucket mix one part muriatic acid, or hydrochloric acid with 10 parts water. Do not add any other product as you could cause a dangerous chemical reaction.

3. Dampen the surface of the brick or concrete you want to clean with muriatic acid and then, taking care not to splash, pour the contents of the bucket on to the surface. Leave it on the surface for 10 minutes.

4. After this time you can rub the surface with a stiff brush to remove dirt stuck in the brick or concrete. Then rinse with plenty of water for at least 2 minutes to make sure you've that the area is completely free of muriatic acid.

5. It is also possible to clean ceramics tiles and joints with muriatic acid , especially in places like the bathroom which accumulate lots of lime. To do this follow the steps above, mixing 1 part product to 10 parts water. Use proper protection, leave to stand for 5 minutes and then rub with a hard brush. Then, rinse the surface with an abundance of water and carefully remove your gloves.

Always take great caution when handling hydrochloric acid, as it is a powerful acid that can damage your skin.