Is Stucco Unhealthy? Should You Restore or Replace Stucco?

Advice from Professional Exterior Painters in Philadelphia

Stucco is an age-old building material, used since the times of the Babylonian, Greek, Egyptian, and Roman civilizations, spanning several thousand years. However, there are many facts and myths surrounding the use of stucco. In fact, many home buyers try to steer clear of stucco and pass up the opportunity to own a beautiful property. However, if your home has stucco, it is important to clear the air, and answer an all-important question, “Is stucco really unhealthy?”

At Mastercraft Painting and Finishes, we specialize in beautifying home exteriors and interiors for residential and commercial properties, in and around Philadelphia, Montgomery and Bucks County.  As a leading, fully-licensed, bonded and insured painting and refinishing contractor in the area, we have seen our fair share of stucco, and can assure our clients that all stucco is not bad. Read on to know more about this material, and how to treat old stucco structures that are in need of repair.

The Facts about Stucco Siding

Essentially, a wall coating that is similar to plaster, stucco applications cover the exterior frame of any structure. Each stucco coat is a combination of multiple ingredients, including Portland cement, hydrated lime, water, fiber (for strength), polymers (for flexibility) and fine builder’s sand. Professional stucco inspectors believe that with the right care and maintenance, stucco as a cladding can far outlast many other siding products.

Whether your home has traditional stucco, or synthetic stucco, also called EIFS (Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems), here are some of its advantages:

  • Durability: Resistant to rot, mold, termites, impact and fire. Based on the local climate conditions, stucco finishes can last an entire century!
  • Sound Resistance: Stucco siding buffers the sound coming from outside your home, which can be a major advantage, especially if you live in a busy neighborhood.
  • Color and Texture: With long-lasting pigments blended into stucco finishes, your home will look new and beautiful for a long time. You don’t have to worry about exterior repainting every few years; a major cost-saving in home renovations. Moreover, you can opt for a variety of stucco textures to add character and uniqueness to your home.
  • Easy Maintenance: Although you need timely maintenance to increase the durability of your stucco siding, the process by itself is fairly simple. You can Do-It-Yourself (DIY) if you are enthusiastic about home maintenance tasks.
    • Inspect your stucco finish every once in a while.
    • Clean the surface with a hosepipe (avoid pressure washers as they could damage the stucco).
    • Fill any cracks or holes with masonry-compatible caulking.

A few challenges with stucco for your home’s exterior:

  • Porosity: Without proper and periodic maintenance, stucco homes are prone to water retention, which can cause water damage issues, one of the main reasons that people pass on stucco properties. However, with timely care, your stucco siding will remain in excellent condition for several years.
  • Lack of Resilience: The stucco on very old homes used to be inflexible and prone to cracking, especially in regions that experience soil-shifts. However, in recent years, the addition of polymers to the stucco mix makes it strong and flexible, and less likely to crack, even if the home’s foundation settles during a soil shift.

While stucco has its pros and cons, don’t worry if your home has this material on the outside. Instead of tearing it down, consider restoring it with the help of exterior refinishing professionals at Mastercraft Painting and Finishes. Our stucco masons will evaluate the condition of your siding, and give you an honest opinion about repairs versus replacement. Take advantage of our highly-skilled and experienced stucco specialists, and enjoy strong, durable and aesthetically-pleasing home exteriors for years to come.

For reliable, affordable, high-quality stucco repairs and refinishing, count on the friendly experts at Mastercraft Painting and Finishes. Call us at 267-496-5307 or contact us online for a free estimate.