Making The Proper Repair Of Walls And Ceilings Using Stucco
If your home improvement project involves stucco in Blue Diamond, you will want to be sure you find the right contractor for the job. It is always important to hire good contractors, but it is especially important when they will be doing work such as stucco installation, which is not as common as other contracting duties. You need to work with a people who know how do to the job properly, so you can be sure it will get done right the first time.
When you get the bids, make sure to ask if the work will be guaranteed once it is completed. A quality stucco contractor will stand firmly behind their work, so don’t hesitate to ask this question. If the labor and material are not covered by some form of guarantee, you should quickly move on to the next bid. There are plenty of contractors out there who are willing to stand behind their work, so there is no reason to work with one who isn’t.
Stucco can be messy business. Make sure there is a plan in place to protect the rest of your property from the mess that can be made when stucco is put in. You don’t want to be left with a huge cleanup project after your contractor has left the job site, so ask specific questions as to how they will keep the rest of your property as clean as possible.
Hiring a stucco contractor doesn’t need to be a long and drawn out process, as long as you know what you are looking for from the start. Use the points above to guide your search, and only hire a contractor once you are fully satisfied that they are the perfect selection for the work that you need completed.
The History and Benefits of Stucco
Stucco is also known as 'Portland cement plaster'. It is generally used in building repair, to repair leaky windows, decorate exteriors or for any other decorative purposes. Restoration companies use it for restoration projects as it is widely available in various textures and colors.
Exterior stucco can be classified into two types, hard coat stucco and exterior insulation & finish system. Hard coat stucco is commonly used for homes. It is generally cheap, thus gaining popularity for commercial projects. It is a little expensive comparatively and is mostly used in commercial constructions.
Hard coat stucco is generally applied in one coat, two coats and three coats together with a cement base. Three coat system provides 2 rough coats with cement and one finish coat while the one coat process provides the facility of one rough coat and one finish coat. One coat process is much simpler, cheaper and time saving, hence gaining popularity these days. One coat system provides almost the same benefits of three coat system. However, three coat process is much tougher than the other and can withstand cracks in most critical weather conditions.
1. Attractive Look: Stucco can increase the looks of a house. Therefore, it is preferred to use in the interiors of the home. The different design and stonework can add tremendous beauty to your home. Its use is equally appreciated for exterior parts of your house. Various pigments are available to enhance its beauty further.
2. Reduced Cost and Maintenance: It is generally cheaper than other available building materials. It is also maintenance free in comparison to other construction materials and far better than paint. For painted surfaces, you consistently need maintenance which makes it more costly. Stucco applied surfaces don't need any fixes or maintenance for many years. Pigments can be used after it has completely dried.
3. Highly Durable: No building material can beat the durability of the stucco. If applied correctly, it can stand for many years without any maintenance. Seeking professional assistance for such project is a good choice.
4. Architectural styles: Stucco can be used in different architectural styles, especially Spanish. However, an expert artisan can produce great design work using stucco.
5. Good Weather Repellent: Stucco is best for extreme weather conditions and is extremely helpful in blocking rain water. This is fire proof and thus your home can withstand against heat damages.
It is mandatory to use stucco siding correctly in order to utilize its full benefits. You can consult professional services to help you out in this regard.
Home Stucco Construction Project Timing - Doing it Right Vs Right Now
When fall inevitably comes each year, home owners who have been "thinking about" renovating their home with stucco suddenly realize they're running out of time, and give their contractor(s) a call. All of them. The resulting mayhem is an influx of home owners requesting a contractor do their home before winter so that they can enjoy their new beautiful home's look and increased energy efficiency. The contractors who make most of their money during the summer, begin to quicken the pace to accommodate this work before winter, often at the expense of quality. Each stucco construction project is not given it's due diligence, and critical portions of work are ignored such as contracts, weather barriers, proper surface leveling, warranties. Even not so "critical" but finishing aspects such as proper moulding selection is often ignored.
The average stucco construction renovation will take about 3 weeks, with a 2 week lead time. This can all be expedited with an experienced project manager, but most home owners opt to do the managing themselves, sometimes naively. With 5 full weeks required from the time you SCHEDULE the contractor, you really need to start looking for prices about 7 weeks in advance. Generally, the stucco construction season (for Toronto) will end towards the end of October. This means that if you're not looking at the beginning of September, you need to exercise a degree of caution about getting your project done before temperatures drop below acceptable levels. EIFS manufacturer guidelines state:
Do not proceed with application of base coat and/or finish coat at ambient air temperatures below 5C (41F)
Applying the material in these temperatures may cause it not to cure properly, resulting in improper adherence to the substrate, and subsequent delamination - in English, your walls could fall off. The weather can't be blamed for all problems though, and you do need to pay attention to make sure your contractor is doing all the layers properly. No weather barrier means that water can get onto your substrate. Adhesive not being done in vertical channels means that water can become trapped against the substrate. Not meshing styrofoam fully can mean cracks developing, and water infiltrating your walls. Not mixing the base coat in the proper ratios or applying it too thin can result in a weak and easily damaged wall surface. Not spending enough time "floating" (troweling) the finish coat can result in discrepancies in the texture, which really just looks awful. Having a third party project manager or home inspector come once or twice a week to inspect the quality of work for a few hundred dollars is very inexpensive compared to having to rip the stucco off your walls and redo it in 5 years.
Aside from application problems, you want to ensure you give yourself enough time to really think about what you want for this project. Too many home owners take the first, cheapest guy they find and go ahead without a contract, resulting in them not knowing exactly what is "included", and a lot of "extras". Doing your due diligence includes researching items you need included with your project, such as flashing, replacing old substrate, whether a weather barrier is required or not, in what order to proceed with renovations... the list goes on. In short, don't go into a project without being fairly confident you know you have the details worked out, and use a contract to clarify those details.
Even moldings are sometimes not given their due consideration. Proper molding selection will help manage water runoff, further protecting your walls. They can direct water away from window openings - which tend to be the most susceptible to water damage, and kick water off the walls - preventing the black or white water streaks you often see below window sills. Using a wall band at the base of a high traffic wall can protect your wall from being hit by snow shovels, moving furniture and even cars. The same protective quality can be said of quoins or pilasters on the corners of your wall.
When renovating your home, it's important to focus on more than just the initial cost of stucco construction. You need to do your research to ensure you don't get "ripped off", and you need think about future maintenance. If you can't realistically put in the time to make sure you have everything included, get multiple estimates, have a contract made, and think about how to reduce future maintenance costs, you are better off waiting until spring to have your project completed. You will lose 1 winter of lowered heating costs, but prevent thousands of dollars in possible damage.