How to Repair Exterior Stucco

How to Repair Exterior Stucco

March 19, 2020

There are a lot of advantages associated with the use of stucco as an exterior siding material, including its insulating properties, fire resistance and long-lasting durability. Of course, one could add an asterisk to the “durability” trait—it will remain in good condition so long as you properly maintain it, and make any necessary repairs as soon as you notice the formation of cracks and holes.

Here’s a quick overview of what you should know about exterior stucco repair in Bluffton, SC when issues start to show up:

  • Remove broken sections: The first step is to remove any broken or crumbling sections of the stucco. Getting rid of the loose pieces of stucco first will make the job easier. Take it down to the metal mesh that covers the lath underneath, then clear the area with a wire brush to remove any additional loose dirt or debris. Always be sure to wear gloves and safety glasses, because the materials can fly rather unpredictably!
  • Inspect and replace the metal mesh as needed: In some cases, you might need to replace the metal mesh under the broken section of stucco. Check and see if there are any signs of damage or rust. If it appears to be in good condition, you can keep using it when applying the new stucco, but otherwise you’ll need to use some metal snips to remove the old mesh, then apply a new piece of metal mesh underneath. Make sure to measure out the mesh and cut it to the proper size. You can adhere it with roofing nails directly to the wooden lath.
  • Mix the stucco properly: It’s crucial that you follow all of the instructions to properly mix the stucco before you apply it. Create a batch of the mixture using a large bucket or a wheelbarrow, but try to avoid mixing more than you can use within 20 minutes, because otherwise the stucco will start to dry out. Before you begin applying, wet the area to be patched with water from a spray bottle. If you need to match the new stucco to the existing material, you might need to tint it with a stucco/mortar colorant. If so, we recommend you test this in small batches before applying it to the exterior surface.
  • Apply the stucco: Begin applying a quarter-inch layer of the stucco to the mesh with a masonry towel. Once this layer hardens, you can score the surface in an X formation with the edge of the trowel to help the next layer stick. Mix another batch, then apply another quarter-inch layer in the same process, and cover with plastic so it doesn’t dry out. Finally, before the last layer, mist the surface, then mix again and make sure you have a texture that matches the existing surface before you start to apply. Let the top layer sit for the amount of time listed on the packaging. Once it’s dry, you can paint if needed.

For more information about repairing stucco cracks in Bluffton, SC, contact Spring Construction today.

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