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Stucco – For the Protection of Deteriorated Masonry
Stucco can be a great way to protect damaged masonry – Old or poorly maintained masonry can be costly to repair. A stucco application to deteriorated masonry just might be the answer for small budgets yet still provide reasonable protection of the damaged masonry from the elements.
What exactly is stucco? – Stucco is a cement and sand based mixture that is used as a siding material on homes or businesses or as a decorative or waterproofing material for covering masonry walls.
When buildings begin to age they start to experience many different forms of deterioration mostly from water infiltration. Sometimes the cost of repairs can be very expensive.
When old, deteriorated masonry structures do not warrant the investment in re-construction or repair then a stucco application may be the alternative. This will extend the life of the masonry by filling in the obvious damaged area and in addition provides a smooth waterproof surface from rain water.
It can be used where bricks are flaking or ‘spalling’ – Stucco can be used as an intermediate repair application that will protect the surface of old or deteriorated masonry from water entry. It helps strengthen the surface of the wall which will slow the process of spalling or flaking of brick masonry. Stucco can be used in so many different ways and is truly a very versatile product.
Old masonry chimneys and walls are prime candidates for stucco – Old masonry chimneys and walls can be real problems. If the conditions are right an application of a stucco coating can extend the life of your chimney or wall by closing off the deteriorated bricks and mortar joints and providing a smooth surface for water run off.
How is the stucco coating applied? – For the simplest applications stucco cement is mixed with water. A bonding agent is also added to assure the best possible bond of the stucco to the masonry surface.
The masonry wall is dampened prior to the application of the stucco coating to keep the stucco from flash drying which can weaken the bond of the stucco to the masonry. This first application is called a ‘scratch coat’ and is used to fill all voids and cracks and smooth out any inconsistencies in the wall. The scratch coat is then left to dry overnight.
Then the second stucco coat is applied – Sometimes a single coat is all that is requested and other times a second coat is applied to tighten up the surface of the wall and add some finished texture to the appearance to the masonry. Many different pigments can be added to the stucco and many different textures can be applied.
Stucco can be used as either a cheap and effective repair solution or if the budget allows a highly decorative and artistic texture designed to enhance the beauty of any home. How you choose to use it is completely up to you and how much you wish to spend.
Categories: Wall Covering