Stucco is one of the oldest construction materials that receives attention for both positive and negative reasons. If you look around the neighborhood, you can notice stucco homes which have attractively seamless walls and subtle colors. Stucco homes have both advantages and disadvantages but before discussing about them, we should know what stucco actually is. Stucco is the name of a wall coating that carries similar features of plaster. In fact the term plaster siding is used as another name for stucco. Although stucco application is commonly seen on exterior walls but stucco finishes can be seen on interior walls.
The traditional stucco uses for exterior walls involves upto 4 layers that include dash coat, scratch coat, brown coat and finish coat.
Each stucco coat is formed of the same substances which are
– Hydrated lime
– Fine builder’s sand
– Polymers, where increased flexibility is needed
– Fiber, if greater strength is preferred
– Portland cement
The amount of each ingredient differs on the basis of the type of coat. Sometimes, mineral oxide pigment is also mixed to finish the coat for homes with colored stucco. Synthetic stucco is also available but there are some home improvement professionals who say this particular material has a tendency to accelerate moisture problem.
Interior stucco finishes are like special premeasured, powdered mixes. You just need to add water and spray the mixture on the surface.
Advantages of stucco homes
1. Sustainability – The ingredients required for stucco finishes are easily obtained from local, sustainable sources.
2. Durability – the biggest advantage of Stucco is that it is resistant to fire, rot, mold, impact, and termite infestation. The finish on stucco homes has the capability to last up to 100 years depending on local climate conditions.
3. Color retention – Stucco finishes contain durable pigments that eliminate the need to repaint your house on regular intervals.
4. Sound resistance – Stucco siding buffers noise that is coming from outside your home. This is a major advantage for those houses which are situated near a busy street.
5. Texture – Stucco finishes can be applied according to your choice of texture to give your home an extraordinary, seamless look.
Disadvantages of stucco homes
In order to keep your stucco in good condition, a certain amount of maintenance is required. Though it is not a difficult project but it is something that you can not avoid. The maintenance process includes the following steps
– Initiate stucco inspection frequently
– Fill any kind of holes or cracks as soon as you notice them.
– You can clean stucco homes with garden hose but try to avoid pressure washing and strong spray which can seriously damage the surface
2. Labor cost
Stucco application is a labor intensive and specialized job that requires skilled concrete contractors Milton. This is one of the reasons why the labor cost installing stucco finishes is higher than other method of siding.
Stucco is known for its lack of flexibility. It has a tendency of cracking in the areas where the soil shifts. However to solve this issue, polymer is being used with the stucco mix.
Stucco homes are prone to water retention which gradually leads to water damage. This happens especially when the application is not done by an expert or lack of maintenance. If you have plans to sell your stucco house, have it checked out by a home inspector experienced in handling stucco.
In spite of a few disadvantages, stucco is an advantageous construction material especially in dryer climates. However they can be used in Wetter climates as well if the stucco is constructed specifically for mildew and moisture resistance. If you are looking for home improvement on sidings and don’t prefer wood, you can consider stucco as an inexpensive, efficient alternative. Contact an efficient local stucco contractor near me to get your desired results.