Pros and cons of sandblasting for exterior cleaning

Sandblasting has become a popular way to clean and smooth surfaces in a variety of industries. Also known as abrasive blasting, this process uses tiny particles to blast away rough spots on metal, concrete, wood, and other materials. Sandblasting can be safe for exterior cleaning, but it is not ideal for every building. Read on to find out if sandblasting is right for you.

How does sandblasting work?

Sandblasting involves shooting small particles at high pressure to chip away dirt, rust, grit, graffiti, paint, and just about anything else you may not want on your building’s surface. The term “sandblasting” is a bit deceiving because the particles are not always sand. Glass beads, crushed shells, rice husks, silica flour, ground corncobs, and coconut husks are some of the many materials that may be used for abrasive blasting. The pressure is adjustable, so we can find the right balance and material to safely clean your building. 

Will sandblasting damage my building’s exterior?

Sandblasting does have the potential to damage exterior surfaces. That is why we conduct a thorough evaluation before recommending sandblasting for restoration. Factors that influence the safety of sandblasting include:

  • The age of the building
  • The building’s exterior surface (concrete, brick, limestone, etc.)
  • Previous treatments done to the building
  • The overall condition of the exterior
  • The results you’re trying to achieve with sandblasting

We take all of this into consideration to suggest the best cleaning method for your building. If sandblasting is a good fit, we can provide a quote for our services and schedule a time to complete it. If sandblasting is not right for your building, we can recommend a safer alternative. 

Benefits of sandblasting over other cleaning methods

Abrasive blasting is much faster than many other cleaning methods, saving both time and money. Work that would take days to complete with sandpaper can be done in a few hours with a sandblaster. Sandblasting is excellent for smoothing out rough edges and corners, and it is more customizable than chemical cleaning methods. We can fine-tune the right materials and pressure levels for each job. The efficiency, versatility, and effectiveness of sandblasting are why it has become a sought-after solution in exterior restoration. 

Can we do a test to see if sandblasting is safe for the building?

Unfortunately, damage from sandblasting is not always visible right away. Conducting a test on a portion of the building may not accurately reflect the long-term effects of sandblasting. For example, some forms of bricks will spall after sandblasting, but it takes months for the bricks to crumble. That’s why it is critically important to get a professional inspection before sandblasting. 

The exterior building specialists at JK Industries have years of experience in sandblasting and property restoration. We will assess the best cleaning method for your building, budget, and overall needs. Give us a call at 405-285-9800 if you’d like to schedule a sandblasting consultation.