What does Efflorescence Mean?

Definition of Efflorescence in Construction
The white discoloration seen on the face of masonry facades. This discoloration is the result of water exiting the face of the masonry surface and moving salts out of the masonry system.

In many cases the appearance of efflorescence is a sign of the wall leaking water from somewhere over the top of where the efflorescence shows up. Lack of proper flashings, coping caps, or just a leaking masonry system, will cause water to get in the back of the masonry system, and will result in the leaching out of the salts causing the facade to appear stained. The efflorescence can normally be power washed off the face of the structure, however, unless the water is stopped from entering the rear of the masonry system, the discoloration will quickly re-appear. Efflorescence can be used to identify where masonry is failing and in a building to be renovated, where the masonry is likely to cost substantial money to repair.