Severely Water Damaged Wood Behind EIFS
Severely Water Damaged Wood Behind EIFS

Traditional masonry stucco is one of the most durable exterior wall claddings available and modern synthetic stucco offers outstanding insulating properties. Both will last for years without repairs if you manage water properly. Both will fail if you don’t.

What is Stucco?

Before we jump into water management we should take a quick detour into the world of stucco. What is it and how is it installed?

Traditional Masonry Stucco

Masonry stucco is a cementitious wall cladding that is mechanically fastened to the exterior wall of a building.

The installation of masonry stucco can be broken into four steps:

  • attaching a water resistant barrier (WRB) to the exterior sheathing of the building
  • self-firring expanded metal lathe is then mechanically fastened to this substrate using nails or screws
  • metal casing beads are installed at window openings and the tops and bottoms of walls to allow for water drainage and help to establish a consistent depth for the finished wall cladding
  • masonry is then applied to the wall in 3 layers: an initial “scratch coat”, a second “brown coat” and a final finish coat.

Portland cement is the best cement to use for installing modern masonry stucco Older homes may have been built using lime cement that was mixed on site by the plasterer. Older homes also frequently feature wooden firring strips between the WRB and metal lathe and often lack casing beads.

Modern Synthetic Stucco

Modern stucco systems are based on a system of exterior wall cladding developed in Germany after the Second World War. Germany was rebuilding after the tremendous destruction of the war. They developed a stucco system that was rapid to install and provided insulation to the exterior of the building. The system is known as the Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems (EIFS).

EIFS consists of a water resistant barrier (WRB) over the sheathing of the building (usually plywood or OSB in residential construction). Expanded polyethylene (EPS) foam sheets are applied over the WRB and covered with a thin layer of fiberglass mesh embedded in acrylic masonry basecoat. A sanded acrylic finish coat is applied over the basecoat, sealing the system from exterior moisture and protecting it from UV.

There are a broad range of approved installation practices for modern synthetic stucco, but all of them include a drain plane behind the EPS foam to allow moisture to exit the system at weeps.

Older EIFS installations may not feature a drain plane behind the EPS sheets and can be more prone to moisture damage, particularly if proper weep areas have not been installed around window and door penetrations and at the base of walls.


Stucco Water Instrusion- What Does the Water Do?


One thing that you’ll notice about the description of both masonry stucco and EIFS is the need for a water resistant barrier under the stucco and an emphasis on design and installation that allows any water that enters the system to rapidly drain to the exterior of the wall. The reason for this is simple: water trapped in the wall will destroy stucco.

If water gets behind your masonry stucco, several things will happen:

  • It will begin to corrode the wire lath and fasteners that hold the cladding to the wall. Over time, cycles of freeze and thaw will work the stucco loose from the sheathing and form bubbles and cracks in the wall surface.
  • Failure of the water resistant barrier behind masonry stucco can lead to rot and deterioration of the wall sheathing that the wire lath and fasteners are attached to, resulting in detachment of the wall cladding from the sheathing.
  • With older lime stucco installations water can degrade the stucco itself, washing the lime out of the cement so that the wall consists mainly of sand. You can put your hand into a stucco wall that’s deteriorated this way and pull out chunks of sandy debris.


If water gets behind your EIFS wall it is likely to rot the wall sheathing, particularly in older EIFS insulations that may not have featured a WRB. Standards for EIFS installations have developed over time and homes built twenty or more years ago may not be up to current practices. Older EIFS homes may not have been built with a WRB or even sheathing at all. Water inside such a wall can do extensive damage.

Modern installation practices create outlets for water that enters the wall system to exit. Older homes may not have these design features. In an older EIFS home, it makes sense to consider improvements to water management outside the wall cladding system. This can prevent damage to the interior of the wall by controlling moisture before it enters that stucco wall system. Upgrading flashings and improving bulk water management with effective gutters are cost effective solutions to mitigating water damage in a stucco homes..

A stucco wall that has been damaged severely requires major surgery. Damaged areas need to be cut away with a grinder. Rotten sheathing is replaced. Structural damage is assessed and repaired as necessary. Then the entire system needs to be rebuilt starting with a proper WRB and progressing outward with either masonry or EIFS installation. It’s an expensive and time consuming process that is best avoided. It is far more cost effective to prevent water damage to stucco walls than it is to repair them after the fact.

Here are four key areas to focus on to help effectively manage water and prevent it from damaging your stucco.

Install Kickout Flashings

Kickout or kick flashings are a key component to effective water management. These angled flashings, placed where a roof line meets a vertical wall, direct water away from the wall and out toward the gutters. Without kick flashings, water will run down the vertical wall where the roof meets that structure. Over time water will wick into the exterior wall and begin to degrade the stucco. Kick flashings are inexpensive insurance and can prevent expensive repairs down the road.

Get Good Gutters

Gutters are an often overlooked area of weakness when it comes to stucco. There are two major problems that can form around gutters.

  • The first comes from improperly pitched or clogged gutter systems. These can allow water to pool in areas of vulnerability and enter the wall system over time. Poorly pitched and draining gutters can also exacerbate problems with ice dams in cold conditions.
  • The second major issue with gutters has to do with penetrations through the exterior wall.Water leaking through stucco walls can sometimes be the result of downspout brackets that were installed improperly. Attaching downspouts requires drilling penetrations in the stucco cladding. These penetrations must be properly sheathed and waterproofed to ensure that water will not wick into the interior wall should gutters become clogged. A blob of silicone caulk is not proper waterproofing. Qualified gutter installation professionals know the right procedures for properly installing hardware to prevent water ingress at penetrations.
  • To get the most benefit from improvements to gutters, they must be paired with proper flashings. These components act in concert to move bulk water away from vulnerable areas.


Prevent Ice Dams

In cold climates, ice dams can form at the edge of roofs when attics are improperly insulated and vented. Repeated freeze/thaw cycles can force water up under shingles and onto the roof deck. This water can then pass into the interior of the building or the interior of stucco walls and create extensive damage. It’s essential that attic spaces are properly insulated and vented. When shingle roofs are replaced the lower edge of the roof should be protected with an adhesive backed waterproof membrane like Ice and Water Shield to mitigate water ingress should ice dams form.

Fix Flat Roofs

Failed EPDM flat roofs are a frequent source of water ingress to stucco walls, particularly if they haven’t been properly pitched. On such a roof water will make its way into areas of vulnerability that may not have been anticipated during the initial design and construction of the building. It is critically important that the roofs are designed and installed so that water can rapidly drain off of the roof deck without passing into interior walls.



Water and Stucco Don’t Mix – Keep the Water Out
Water is the enemy of stucco, both traditional masonry stucco and modern synthetic EFIS systems. Damaged stucco is expensive to repair. Avoid the expense and trouble by taking steps to properly manage water and keep it where it belongs: outside your home.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Jeromy Rabil
1 year ago

I simply want to say I am newbie to blogs and honestly liked this web site. More than likely I’m going to bookmark your website . You really have perfect articles. Thanks for sharing your webpage.

where to watch the ghost of peter sellers

I have observed that in the world the present moment, video games will be the latest fad with kids of all ages. Periodically it may be difficult to drag your son or daughter away from the activities. If you want the very best of both worlds, there are many educational games for kids. Thanks for your post.

Who was I in my Past Life?

Do you believe past life hypnosis? Do you think past lives regression is real?

who was I in my Past Life?

Do you believe past life hypnosis? Do you think past lives regression is real?

Chris Dayrit
1 year ago

Excellent weblog right here! after reading, i decide to buy a sleeping bag ASAP

John Deere Diagnostic and Test Manuals

The next occasion I read a blog, I’m hoping that this doesnt disappoint me around this. Get real, It was my substitute for read, but I really thought youd have some thing fascinating to talk about. All I hear is actually a couple of whining about something you could fix if you werent too busy seeking attention.

fashion urban tv
1 year ago

I have to thank you for the efforts you’ve put in writing this site. I’m hoping to check out the same high-grade content by you later on as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my very own blog now 😉

My PeoplePerHour gig

That is a great tip especially to those new to the blogosphere. Brief but very accurate info… Thanks for sharing this one. A must read article!

sell my house now phoenix

This blog was… how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I’ve found something which helped me. Kudos.

old cracked journal
1 year ago

I like it whenever people come together and share views. Great blog, stick with it.

vintage roast
1 year ago

Hi! I could have sworn I’ve visited this web site before but after browsing through many of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m certainly pleased I came across it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back frequently!

silicone baking mats

Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It will always be useful to read through articles from other authors and practice a little something from other sites.

silicone baking mats

This is a topic that’s near to my heart… Take care! Exactly where can I find the contact details for questions?

d.j. malsta
1 year ago

Hi, I do think this is a great blog. I stumbledupon it 😉 I will revisit yet again since i have bookmarked it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.

1 year ago

drunk college girl gets fucked at party [url=]college women anal with caption [/url] real college students having sex.
movies with naked teen [url=]mexican teen girls nude [/url] teen black girls selfshot nudes.
mature made to cum [url=]petite mature naked brown hairy [/url] hairy mature men – tom froehlich.
tumblr milf teen lesbians licking ass [url=]petite teen nude gif [/url] transgender teen posing nude.
king of the hill porn black and white [url=]blackwebcams00[/url] petite redhead wife sucks black cock in hotel.

1 year ago

webpage : 바카라사이트

9006 led bulb
1 year ago

Everyone loves it whenever people get together and share thoughts. Great site, stick with it.

1 year ago

After I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on whenever a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there a means you can remove me from that service? Thanks a lot.

Touch Screen Displays, Interactive Digital Kiosks, Digital Signage, Software, Photo Booth Solutions | Rental and Sale - Metroclick

MetroClick specializes in building completely interactive products like Photo Booth for rental or sale, Touch Screen Kiosks, Large Touch Screen Displays , Monitors, Digital Signages and experiences. With our own hardware production facility and in-house software development teams, we are able to achieve the highest level of customization and versatility for Photo Booths, Touch Screen Kiosks, Touch Screen Monitors and Digital Signage. Visit MetroClick in NYC at or , 121 Varick St, New York, NY 10013, +1 646-843-0888.

Custom T-shirts
1 year ago

Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post! It is the little changes that will make the most important changes. Many thanks for sharing!

1 year ago

good posting 호게임

Jaquelyn Andronis
1 year ago

I simply wish to advise you that I am new to having a blog and extremely liked your work. More than likely I am likely to store your blog post . You absolutely have wonderful article materials. Acknowledge it for sharing with us your main web document

Designed Coffee Mugs

Can I simply just say what a relief to uncover someone that actually understands what they’re talking about over the internet. You certainly understand how to bring a problem to light and make it important. A lot more people should check this out and understand this side of your story. I was surprised that you’re not more popular because you surely possess the gift.

crypto pump and dump

FreeSpinner will help you with providing all the content that you need.

Blake Anderl
1 year ago

It can be near impossible to find well-advised users on this content, still you come across as like you fully understand the things you’re covering! Bless You

fyers account
1 year ago

It’s hard to come by experienced people on this subject, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

11 months ago

You have made some really good points there. I looked on the internet for more information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this site.

11 months ago

Great info. Lucky me I found your site by chance (stumbleupon). I have bookmarked it for later!

pozycjonowanie zgierz
11 months ago

Whats up very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful .. Amazing .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds also…I am happy to find a lot of helpful info here within the submit, we need work out more strategies on this regard, thanks for sharing.

11 months ago

Great article! We are linking to this particularly great post on our website. Keep up the great writing.

11 months ago
free payment
11 months ago

I’m very pleased to uncover this great site. I need to to thank you for your time due to this wonderful read!! I definitely enjoyed every part of it and i also have you saved to fav to look at new information on your website.

pozycjonowanie stalowa wola

naturally like your web-site but you need to test the spelling on quite a few of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling issues and I find it very bothersome to inform the truth then again I will definitely come again again.

Sapid Agency - New York Seo Companies

Hello there, just turned out to be receptive to your blog page through The Big G, and have found that it is really helpful. I will be grateful in the event you continue on these.

pozycjonowanie stron bolesławiec

You have noted very interesting points! ps decent website.

Herbal potpourri
11 months ago

You have made some really good points there. I checked on the web for additional information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this web site.
11 months ago

Paulo Coelho Books Whsmith Which Scientist Explained How The Wheel Works

my homepage … book epub;,

best dog training books
11 months ago

Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to this web site before but after browsing through a few of the articles I realized it’s new to me. Regardless, I’m definitely delighted I stumbled upon it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly.

11 months ago

The next time I read a blog, Hopefully it does not disappoint me as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read through, nonetheless I actually thought you would have something helpful to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of crying about something you can fix if you were not too busy seeking attention.

car seat restoration
11 months ago

I like reading an article that can make people think. Also, many thanks for permitting me to comment.

Sapid Agency - Seo Nyc
11 months ago

I merely have to tell you that I am new to posting and really admired your report. Very possible I am likely to remember your blog post . You certainly have impressive article blog posts. Acknowledge it for share-out with us your main site document


멋져요 바카라사이트
11 months ago

Milk And Honey Book Age Group David Daiches Critical Approaches To

Look at my web-site – book epub (

pozycjonowanie stron www rzeszów

Some genuinely superb information, Sword lily I observed this. “Childhood is that wonderful time when all you need to do to lose weight is take a bath.” by Joe Moore.

11 months ago

Law And Literature Newcastle University The Jungle Lounge

Also visit my website: ebook

11 months ago

감사합니다 여탑

Algarve Portugal property for sale

Very good post. I am facing some of these issues as well..

pozycjonowanie stron internetowych w google

F*ckin’ awesome issues here. I am very satisfied to look your article. Thank you a lot and i’m looking forward to contact you. Will you kindly drop me a mail?

Room On The Broom Hardback Book School Curriculum Design Jobs

Feel free to surf to my web-site – best books;,

11 months ago

Pretty! This was a really wonderful article. Many thanks for providing these details.