Removing Graffiti from Stone and Brick
TORC Cleaning Graffiti
- Client:Property Manager
- Project Duration:Two days
- Substrate:Brick and stone
- Access Method:Scaffolding
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As a stain on a building’s fabric, graffiti can be deceptively difficult to remove and often proves to be too much for inexperienced cleaners to handle. When a regular client approached Spectrum with an apartment building blighted by hard-to-remove graffiti, our team was able to demonstrate their aptitude as stain removal brick and stone specialists. In addition to showcasing the TORC cleaning system, this case study serves as a superb example of, firstly, how paint removal from brick requires a dynamic approach and, secondly, how Spectrum are uniquely equipped and prepared to achieve outstanding results when removing graffiti from stone.
Spectrum assessed the property to formulate a bespoke plan for the client
Removing graffiti from stone is challenging, but the Spectrum team used their extensive knowledge to develop a removal plan
As mentioned earlier, scaffolding was already present around the building by the time we arrived on site. Despite not being strictly necessary, this helped us considerably in terms of access. Normally, we would not erect scaffolding for the removal of graffiti from stone. Instead, we would utilise our IRATA rope access training to abseil down from the roof or use cherry pickers—depending on what would be most suitable for the location. Cherry pickers, for instance, can cause major disruption on busy metropolitan pavements and so would not be suitable for projects in city centres.
When it comes to cleaning and restoration, the Spectrum team prides itself on adaptability in the face of the unexpected. So, when the typical techniques used for stain removal on brick and stone had little impact, it was only natural that they would devise an appropriate secondary solution. In this case, it involved the TORC cleaning system. It worked exceptionally well! It is not most professionals’ go-to solution for paint removal from brick or stone, but given the particularly stubborn nature of this graffiti—and the risk of damage from harsh chemicals—it was a wise choice.
TORC cleaning can remove a variety of stains from substrates
The TORC cleaning system is an advanced piece of cleaning equipment designed specifically for restoring brick and stone. When used by a trained operative, it lifts stains, restores colour, and lifts ground-in grit without harming the building material. For this reason, it is especially useful in restoring or maintaining heritage buildings.
Like its predecessor, the JOS system, TORC cleaning works by producing a low-pressure swirling vortex formed of air, water and a fine, inert granulate. These three elements work to sympathetically lift stains, remove dirt, and polish masonry without excessive heat or pressure. For this project, the fine granulate was able to work with the non-corrosive chemicals introduced in our first cleaning attempt to penetrate the stubborn graffiti, lifting it once and for all.
The extensive training given to our operatives in preserving the health of stonework and restoring vulnerable properties safely was pivotal in transforming this job from a failure into a success. Without a thorough understanding of the risks involved in removing graffiti from stone, and the potential applications of the TORC cleaning system, the client and their property's residents would still be plagued by graffiti.
For removing graffiti, dirt, organic build-up, chemical stains and more, contact Spectrum. We will not stop until we achieve the results you are dreaming of.
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