ProCoat Systems in Salt Lake City we offer traditional stucco materials, along with the synthetically modified stuccos commonly called Exterior Insulated Finish Systems, (EIFS), but it is often the case that your homeowner clients will not know what the differences are. So this blog explanation is more to help educate homeowners.
Cement Versus Synthetic
For centuries, the basic composition of stucco has remained the same—a natural scratch coat of cementitious plaster, followed by a brown coat, topped by a finish coat all placed upon a wire lathe substrate.
All of these coats were laid in a relatively thick manner, creating a rigid wall coating that resists deflection, and hence is relatively brittle when facing thermal expansion and contraction. When applied in a continuous field, traditional stucco is prone to developing cracks not only at wall expansion sites, but also in mid-field.
Water: The Eternal Enemy of Stucco
All wall cladding systems are susceptible to water penetration. Wood siding, cultured and natural stone veneer, stucco, and EIFS products, all have the propensity to some amount of water intrusion. How that water is managed through the proper installation of the cladding is the key to the long-term durability of the installation.
Unlike traditional stucco, EIFS or “synthetic stucco,” modified by the addition a moisture barrier, polymer cement, and the use of extruded foam panel backers, is an advanced cladding system designed to manage water infiltration. An EIFS cladding that develops a leak here and there is still in great shape so long as that water is also released by the system rather than remaining trapped underneath.
Proper Application Techniques Are Key
ProCoat Systems SaltLake City are stucco materials experts. We understand that whether your client chooses a more traditional stucco solution like Sto’s Powerwall, or elects to use an EIFS like StoTherm, we have the expertise to help contractors avoid the installation failure points and ensure your client enjoys years of worry free wall cladding.
The most common stucco and EIFS installation problems are not with the materials, but due to application technique. It is critical that these wall claddings are properly terminated at the bases of walls, at every penetration, and at the joints where the roof and the walls meet. Other common trouble spots include the improper shimming of windows and improper or incomplete installation of backer rods. In EIFS installations, a commonly seen failure point is the incomplete application of the moisture barrier and or the incomplete butting of the foam panels, allowing the base coat to create water management gaps and get trapped between the panels.
EIFS is growing in popularity as a wall cladding system, especially in areas where moisture and severe temperature fluctuations can create an increase in call backs. Don’t let improper installation impede your profitability and reputation. To see the best selection of stucco materials in Salt Lake City, and the expertise to help successfully install them, contact us at ProCoat Systems in Salt Lake City at 801.410.4345 or visit www.procoatsystems.com/salt-lake-city.