MEXICAN TILE RENEW PROJECT IN SARASOTA FL WHERE OUTDOOR TILE HAS A EFFLORESCENCE OR WHITE SPOTS PROBLEM. Efflorescence is a crystalline deposit on surfaces of masonry, exterior Mexican tile, stucco or concrete, there is no real cure for it other than removing the source of the moisture. It is whitish in appearance, and is sometimes referred to as “whiskers”. Efflorescence has been a problem for many years, and is a topic of much controversy.
The formation of these salt deposits are not mysteries. They are, for the most part, water-soluble salts that come from many possible sources to mar and detract from an otherwise beautiful and serviceable structure. First of all, there must be water present to dissolve and transport the salts, remove the source of water and your almost there. Efflorescence, the white spots, that forms on the exterior Mexican tile of the patio in photo above. Naturally, Saltillo tile is not terribly strong or hard. Although it is comparable to other natural stone tiles such as slate or granite it can chip and crack.
When used as exterior tiling, it can only be used in very mild climates, as harsh weather can damage the tile, it needs almost annual upkeep. Therefore, it is very rarely used for outdoor purposes these days, though in very warm climates like the Gulf coast of Florida, well maintained and sealed Saltillo tile makes for a nice tile flooring option for a patio. Typically, Saltillo tiles should be sealed after they have been installed and are completely dried and clear of extra dirt and debris and annual upkeep is highly recommended for exterior applications.
Since humidity has a definite effect on whether or not the white salt spots appear on exterior Mexican tile, it can be assumed that efflorescence is a seasonal problem. The intensity of efflorescence increases after rainy winter seasons, decreases in spring, and by summer has practically disappeared.