We are sure by now you have heard about
some of the negative reputations that stucco has developed over the last decade
or so. But is this reputation deserved?
The simple answer is no, but let us delve a little deeper into the subject and
you will see for yourself…
We remember all too well the unfortunate
and horrific events of September 11th, 2001. A day that will live in infamy for
eons to come. But hearing about some of the good things that happened during
the days and weeks that followed can help to realize that there is a.
Thinking about resurfacing your stucco
home? This could be a great way to revitalize the look of your house, or it
could be covering over way bigger problems. Things to know before you get your
stucco resurfaced. What is the stucco applied to? If you have stucco over
3 STAGES OF STUCCO FAILURE
Stucco problems can come in many forms,
from unsightly cracks and bulges, to internal water damage to hardwood floors
and moldy and decaying floor joists. But
not all stucco problems necessarily mean costly repairs. Some stucco issues can
be minor and require minimal
STUCCO EXPANSION JOINTS
Why are Stucco Expansion Joints Important?
The stucco facade on any building will expand and contract with temperature
changes. This alone would not cause any
problems if the temperature changes were uniform across the entire facade, and
the building structure that
Professional Painting Knowledge Base
How Serious is a Stucco Crack?
Though cracks in stucco can occur due to
different factors, including wrong mix proportions, insufficient mixing, poor
workmanship, seismic movement and seasonal changes, two leading causes of
cracks in stucco are the house settling process and shrinkage-induced stresses,
which typically occur during the drying period. Now that you know why stucco
cracks, let’s find out how serious a stucco crack can be.
The Problems behind Stucco Cracking
Hairline cracks aren’t as serious as deep
cracks. However, they can provide a pathway for moisture and water to enter
into a wall system. Once moisture or water gets inside a wall, it will
inevitably cause further damage. As an example, water that gets behind stucco
will soften the material it comes in contact with, eventually causing stucco to
break away and fall off in sheets. Moisture and water trapped inside walls can
lead to additional problems, such as paint failure, wood rot, mold growth,
musty smell, swollen drywall and irreparable damage.
Although cracks smaller than 1/16 inches
usually don’t undermine the integrity of exterior stucco, repairing them
immediately will prevent them from escalating into something worse. To repair a
minor stucco crack, apply a high-quality caulk, use a brush to stipple the
caulk while wet (this will create texture to better blend) let it cure, dry
properly then paint the entire area.
Unlike hairline cracks, a large stucco
crack may indicate a structural problem. Often, large cracks develop at the
intersection of vertical walls, at the upper corners of window and door frames,
or at joints between wood framing and concrete/brick masonry. Since most large
cracks aren’t only wide but also deep, they allow moisture and water to
penetrate the building envelope and pass freely through walls.
The most “dangerous” cracks are typically
wider than 1/16 inches, with edges that are no longer aligned parallel to each
other. If the edge of a crack has moved in relation to the other edge, it may
indicate unusual structural changes in your home. As an example, when the
foundation settles more on one side of a house than on the other, it may create
enough stress for stucco to crack. To correctly address and fix potential
structural problems, it’s very important to investigate large cracks before any
attempt is made to repair them.
Reasons Why Painting Stucco is a Good Idea
If your home exterior has been finished
with stucco coating, you’re in luck! Not only is this long-lasting, durable
material attractive, it can also effectively protect your home against the
elements. But, just like other types of house siding, the color of your stucco
can fade over time. When this happens, you may wonder if you can paint the
stucco on your home. With proper preparation, the right paint, and correct
painting materials, exterior stucco painting can offer many benefits.
Advantages of Painting Stucco on Your Home
Stucco is one of the most popular exterior
finishes for homes as it is low-maintenance and can look beautiful for years
when taken care of. Hiring professional painters to paint your stucco can
ensure the following unique advantages.
Seals Out Moisture
After it rains, you may notice that your
stucco absorbs water and becomes darker until dry. When you paint stucco, the
paint completely seals the material, so moisture won’t penetrate it. This
allows your color to remain consistent even during a very rainy day.
You probably see water and rusting stains
running in vertical lines on your stucco (usually beneath window frames).
Painting stucco can block and cover these stains. When painted by
professionals, stains won’t reappear for years on the new paint surface!
Fills Hairline Cracks
Do you have a lot of cracks in your stucco?
This damage will only become a bigger problem with time. When left unpainted,
chunks of stucco will pop out and costly repairs will be needed. Painting your
home with high-quality thick paint can fill these hairline cracks naturally
with the paint film.
BEHIND THE WARRANTY
With so many stucco companies to choose
from, all offering you different products and services, how can you know if
you’re getting your money’s worth before it is too late? Check the Warranty.
HOW MANY YEARS IS THE WARRANTY GOOD FOR?
This should be the first thing that you
look at. Stucco manufacturers generally
offer factory material and labor warranties to just a few selected
contractors. These warranties range
greatly in terms depending on the products used or not used during the stucco
These stucco manufacturers have varying
levels of stucco products that perform very differently. Some products are
below average basically just cheap acrylics. They will not hold up very well
over time and will generally fail rather quickly. Like I said, they’re cheap
While other products are high performance,
elastomeric stucco finishes created to withstand intense UV rays, resist water
intrusion and promote elasticity in the finish.
It’s very important to note that no
warranty protects against cracking.
Stucco cracks, no matter what. The higher the grade of product and
techniques used can however reduce cracks and greatly extend the life and
performance of your stucco.
Does Your Stucco Need Repairs?
We love the classic look and feel of
stucco, but more so than most home exterior materials, stucco can be a tricky
keeper. Although stucco as material might not be as prone to major issues in
certain states, it can sometimes feel difficult to take care
Visual Inspect the Stucco for Cracks &
Take a quick walk around the outside of
your home to look for signs of stucco disrepair. Although cracks in stucco are
the easiest thing to visually spot, make sure you pay close attention to any
discoloration or signs of mold. Many of these signs come with general
weathering and age, but if your stucco exterior is fairly new, this can also be
a sign of improper installation. Depending on the climate of your state,
cracking and discoloration could be a sign of expansion or shrinkage of the
Be on the lookout for hairline cracks,
spider cracks, and cracks on any foam trim. Hairline cracks may be a sign of
intense stress on the exterior of your home, whereas a spider crack more often
occurs due to a stucco mixture that was improperly mixed or a base coat that
wasn’t properly cured. If you see signs of mold, it could be a sure sign that
moisture has been trapped behind the surface of your stucco. If cracks,
discoloration, or mold is visible, contact an experienced company to come and
fix cracks with proper compounding or to help you find ways to irradicate mold.
Touch and Smell the Stucco Exterior
Don’t be afraid to get up close and
personal with the stucco around your home. This includes paying close attention
to the smell and feel of stucco areas. Walk around your home and make sure that
everything smells “normal”. Of course, it may be difficult to discern what you
should be smelling, but just as it’s simple to tell the difference between a
clean room and a moldy one, it’s easy to smell mold around your home’s
exterior. If you catch a scent that seems off make sure to check the area
closer and touch the surface. If there’s moisture in the area on a rather dry
day, this is likely due to a moisture issue and should be taken care of
Of course, every homeowner should learn how
to do a general inspection of their home’s exterior, but knowing how seriously
to take cracks and stains can be overwhelming. If you’re worried about missing
areas that need maintenance or major repairs, don’t hesitate