Stucco is a common exterior finish for homes, though it has become a good interior option. Its rough texture resulting from cement and plaster is visually attractive and easy to maintain. If you’re using new stucco for your home’s exterior during the rainy season, your first concern should be about your stucco wet.
Yes, stucco can get wet. Like everything made out of cement, it needs water to cure appropriately. However, constant rain might do more damage than good to your new stucco.
Are you worried that you’ll have to delay the installation of your stucco or opt for another exterior option? You don’t have to be, as this post provides the information you must know about stucco.
Using water during the installation process is as important as applying the stucco itself. Stucco is a combination of cement, sand, and lime, and the only way to get these elements to stick is to add water. Without water, you’d have a sandy, dry mixture that cannot serve the purpose you intended it to.
Once you add water into the mixture, it forms a paste you’ll use. After application, the liquid is still necessary for hardening it. During the hardening process, the water drains out, causing an increase in temperature, which strengthens the combination.
Stucco takes 48 hours to cure and needs to remain damp throughout this period. This is because, without water, the combination remains soft and won’t form correctly.
Water new stucco twice a day to ensure it remains moist for the required 48 hours. However, if you live in a scorching region, you might have to dampen the stucco more than twice.
In cases of extreme hotness, stucco dries too quickly, causing cracks in the carefully applied mixture. The same applies to areas with low humidity.
The best time to wet stucco is early mornings before the heat starts and late evenings after sunset. Avoid wetting stucco when the surface is hot, as it’ll only accelerate the hardening process, causing cracks.
Rain has a lot of effect on stucco paint, especially when you’re just about to get the job done. If this happens, it’s best to halt your operations. However, if you’ve started, there are a few things you can do to prevent the excess water from damaging your work.
The first thing you should do is cover your walls. Thick plastic works great though it would not hold if there’s a strong wind. If you’re using tarp walls, ensure you secure it well to prevent it from flying off.
A better option is creating a temporary shade out of plywood. The only downside to this is that you might not have the materials at hand when the rain comes. You could also wrap plastic around a plywood structure to make it more secure.
Your following action should be to cover your mixing station to prevent water from damaging your mixture. Once the coast is clear, you can continue the application.
Your stucco gets ruined if exposed to rain. The combination will be washed off the wall gradually. This means, the more the downpour, the more the damage.
The same will happen if the stucco doesn’t dry before it rains. Too much water damages the outlook of the mixture if the molding process isn’t complete.
Adding an accelerator will help in a situation where you apply stucco a day before it rains. An accelerator works by shortening the setting time and speeding up the drying process.
Calcium chloride is one of the best options for an accelerator. There are also accelerator packs available in Home Depot stores. Mix the stucco with hot water if you can’t get an accelerator.
Under normal conditions, stucco is a mild repellant and doesn’t allow water to seep into it easily. However, too much moisture in the air in a wet climate leads to oversaturation.
Thankfully, professionals have found a way to use stucco for buildings in wet climates. The process could be long and labor-intensive, but the results and benefits are worth the trouble.
It’s normal for your stucco to be moist after the first few hours of installment. However, if it still looks wet several days after, there’s an underlying problem to it. The most common cause is water infiltration.
Water infiltration results from poor installment, substandard materials, and oversaturation. Aside from these, cracks, soft interior walls, missing junks, and holes around the window could signify water infiltration.
Water infiltration occurs when excess moisture is in the stucco. This condition can cause a leakage in the walls, resulting in mold and rot. Ensure you repair it immediately you notice the problem.
Once you discover something’s amiss, approach the problem immediately. Lack of immediate action will cause the damage to worsen, incurring more cost for repair over time.
You can fix minor problems in your stucco with only a few materials. These include exterior paint, chisel, stucco patch, and putty knife.
Once you have these, remove the damaged area with the chisel. Using the putty knife, scoop the stucco patch and apply it to the open space.
Allow for some hours to dry. Apply the stucco patch twice, leaving it to dry before each application.
Your stucco patch should be the same color as the rest of your stucco. Nonetheless, you could use a different color, then paint to suit the rest of your wall.
Though stucco is easy to fix, seek a professional’s help if the damage is worse than you expected.
Fortunately, the option to waterproof stucco is available. Waterproofing stucco has several benefits. Its primary function is to prevent water damage which could destroy the stucco.
Professionals install the waterproof barrier before applying the stucco; then, they use a sealant on top. With this, your stucco remains intact regardless of the humidity and rainfall.
However, it’s only possible to waterproof when applying stucco for the first time. It’s impossible to install a waterproof barrier after stucco has been applied. The only available option is to use a sealant on top.
Stucco walls are not waterproof unless there’s a waterproof barrier protecting them. Water damage is a common problem in places where rain is the norm. In most cases, the improper installation of stucco results in water penetration.
To avoid such cases, ensure that you assign the job to a professional. Even after installment, periodic inspections and maintenance are essential to spot any damage in stucco. You can also seal or repaint it regularly to prevent water penetration.
Having stucco installed on your home’s exterior comes with a long list of advantages. Aside from being durable, it gives your house a classic look. Paint it with the right color, and you’ll see how beautiful it can be.
Stucco is a natural fire-resistant and insulator against cold and heat. It’s also cost-effective and requires moderate maintenance. Nonetheless, ensure that you waterproof your stucco to make the best out of it.