Stucco is a durable finish created from a mixture of Portland cement, sand and water. Lime, acrylics and some synthetics and glass fibers can provide additional properties to the mix. The stucco mix is usually gray in color like the cement constituent, but manufacturers now supply the premix mortar in a wide variety of colors. The final coat or exterior layer can be colored or have an acrylic finish in any color to fabricate the desired effect. The finish can be textured or have a sandy finish. To achieve a desired finish consult with the stucco contractor. Premixed stucco grains can be purchased and applied manually by trowel or with machinery to get the preferred look.
Stucco is a popular siding material because of its longevity, low cost and relative easy maintenance. This mortar mix is resistant to damage and to wet weather. It is a robust finish that is suitable for a variety of climates and weather conditions. The presence of lime in the mix gives it some permeability that allows the underlying concrete to “breathe”. The porous nature of the finish allowing it to absorb moisture but it also has the inherent ability to dry quickly. Paint and whitewashing do not achieve the same effect and also are not as durable as a stucco finish. Painting lasts on an average of 2-3 years and thereafter requires regular re-application. Stucco can be used over concrete, masonry, wood frame, steel frame and brick. The mortar is fire resistant and retains color, making it relatively easy to maintain.
The application to exterior and interior walls can be achieved manually or by using equipment. Hiring a stucco contractor ensures the work is done efficiently and without the mess and wastage. Unless you are experienced, getting the mortar mix prepared to the right consistency is not easy. DIY projects should be done using a premix. The job is a time consuming and labor intensive one. When you are engaging on a large project it is a better idea to hire a stucco contractor to get the desired result. Nowadays a synthetic mix known as EIFS or Exterior Insulation and Finish System, is used in most residential properties. The application of EIFS is not a DIY job and needs to be handled by an expert.
Incorrect application can lead to bulging, cracking, separating and other serious issues. To avoid these problems and benefit from a beautiful and durable finish consult a stucco contractor. Los Angeles CA residents can find a number of experienced contractors in the area.