The white, chalky, powdery stuff on your basement walls is efflorescence. It isn’t toxic, but it could be a sign of water problems.
In French, the phrase means “to flower out,” and the white residue is known for its fluffy composition.
Efflorescence is the deposit of water-soluble salts left on masonry after water evaporates. It’s most commonly seen on any materials containing Portland cement.
For the powdery deposits to be present, you need:
After moisture evaporates, the remaining salts crystallize and become efflorescence. With a strong brush, the powder can be removed from your walls.
Because water and moisture are needed for it to form, the phenomena often is a seasonal problem. Humidity impacts whether soluble salts appear.
Homeowners might notice efflorescence is more pronounced in the winter, since snow, sleet, and rain add moisture to the atmosphere. However, your walls still can experience it in the spring, summer, and fall.
Some people confuse efflorescence with mold. However, the two are not the same. Efflorescence is primarily a visual/aesthetic problem, whereas mold can lead to health issues.
There are several major differences between the two
Though efflorescence isn’t mold, the presence of the white power is a sign of moisture in your basement.
Seeing white powdery patches on your wall can be an early sign that your foundation has water problems. The earlier you catch foundation or waterproofing issues, the better.
Call My Foundation Repairs today. We will connect you with a foundation repair contractor in your area and help you get your problems solved as quickly as possible!