A Guide to Handling Brick & Stucco Siding Problems

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Both brick and stucco siding are popular exterior coverings for homes. Both are, in fact, among the oldest materials used in residential construction. Bricks have been used since ancient times (just look at the pyramids in Giza!), and stucco is nearly as old. Although both of these materials are quite durable and long-lasting, it is possible for them to develop issues. As you read this guide, you will learn about a few of the most common problems Carolina homeowners have with brick and stucco siding. You will also discover some helpful tips for dealing with these issues if they happen to affect your house.

Inward solar vapor drive – Although it is not extremely prevalent, inward solar vapor drive can cause major problems within the walls of brick and stucco residences. This issue happens when air-conditioned interiors cause condensation to adhere to the house wrap on the back of your home’s brick or stucco siding. Then, when it rains outside, and the sun dries the moisture, it ultimately causes water to sink deeper into your walls, leading to a variety of problems.

Both brick and stucco exteriors tend to gather dampness. You may have noticed raindrops and morning dew sticking to your home’s outside walls, for instance. This propensity for wetness means that building crews have to take extra care when they are installing brick and stucco exteriors. They generally create a complex drainage plane and air barrier behind the siding. This helps to prevent moisture buildup.

In some instances, though, permeable house wrap still allows moisture to seep into the brick or stucco itself. There is a complicated series of steps that allow this to happen, but suffice it to say that it generally ends with an inward solar vapor drive and a host of structural problems. If you are concerned that inward solar vapor drive may be impacting your residence, call a professional to take a look. He or she will also be able to help you understand precisely what is happening in your unique situation.

    • Algae – As you’ve already learned, brick and stucco attract moisture. This means that, particularly in humid regions of North Carolina and South Carolina, they are prone to algae growth. Certain types of algae can actually be bad for your siding, but most sorts just look unattractive. The simplest way to get rid of algae is to fill a spray bottle with two parts water and on part vinegar, then scrub the algae patches with a brush.
    • Crumbling areas – If you’ve noticed areas of crumbling brick or stucco on your home, you should call a professional mason right away. This can signify structural issues that need to be dealt with as quickly as possible. A mason will be able to help you understand precisely what is going on with your siding and provide you with solutions.

As a general rule, brick and stucco are exceptional choices for siding. If you do find yourself dealing with any of the problems outlined in this guide, though, the very best thing you can do is hire an expert to take a look at your house. There are numerous masons throughout the Carolinas, and, in some situations, a general contractor might be able to do your job.

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