I want to paint my house. It is stucco over the block. House is about
10 years old. My questions are these:
What is the best paint to use?
There are some hairline cracks, will the paint be thick enough to fill
them? If not, what do I use. They are about the same thickness as a
Elastomeric is the best, however, there are all grades of it. Some of it is
so thick, it requires a special sprayer, or it will burn out the sprayer.
If you do it in elastomeric, do your homework. If you do it right, you
shouldn't have to touch it for a long time. If you don't .................
It's not your Daddy's paint.
Elastomeric painting of stucco can seal it, keeping moisture out of it,
which then keeps the freeze/thaw or wet/dry cycles down, and extends the
life of the stucco.
stucco must breath or moisture pushing through can damage it. I am
where it gets to -20 , in winter moisture from the inside absorbes
into the stuccom if its sealed and not breathable thats bad, and any
leak from cracks wont allow it to dry as designed. Regular latex house
paint breathes. Of course new stucco is best but to seal it tight I
think is inviting big problems 10-20-30 yrs down the road.
DO NOT PAINT YOUR STUCCO!! You may as well wrap your house in plastic
wrap, it will not breath and you WILL get mold. Stucco should never be
painted. If you want the cracks fixed and maybe a updated texture, then a
restucco is what you need. Depending on the stucco , you can fog coat it.
But if you like painting every 3 years , go ahead and paint but you will
be cleaning mold off of your window sills and the mold will strt to grow
in the stucco along the bottom of the wall because there is no where for
the humidity to go. Call 3 or 4 stucco contractors and you will see that
generally a restucco is 25% cheaper than paint and if its done right , it
should last you a lifetime.
Our Florida condo, stucco/concrete block, was painted by a contractor.
The previous paint job was done by unskilled idiot - wasn't pressure
washed, full of mildew that cause the paint to peel. 40 y/o building,
so numerous hairline cracks. After pressure washing, the contractor
used a brushable caulk which, IIRC, was clear or translucent. They did
a perfect job, with no peeling after 9 years. We had previously gotten
a bid for $27K for elastomeric paint, two coats. With only 8 units,
that was pretty high. The contractor we hired, for under $7K, rec.
primer and two coats of paint, but condo board opted for one coat.
Everyone I know of who painted stucco/cb in Florida used semi-gloss
latex/acryllic. Semi so it doesn't hold soil/mildew as readily.
1. Pressure wash it. With some chlorine - to kill mold - added.
2. Fix anything that needs fixing. Hairline cracks will fill nicely with
painter's caulk (acrylic caulk) just smeared on and in with a finger.
Bigger cracks need something better - urethane caulk is good but harder to
3. Paint with a good grade acrylic latex; I like semi-gloss. Don't paint in
the direct sun; i.e., if an area is going to be in sun later, paint it when
the sun isn't hitting it so it can dry first. If you roll, back roll in all
durections - up<>down...side<>side...NE<>SW...NW<>SE - to get as many as
possible of the stucco nooks and crannies.
Painting stucco is a very bad idea. The Stucco Manufacturers Association
recommends fog coating:
Here's a commercial vendor of fog coating products:
I didn't say can't be painted - said it shouldn't be painted.
Lots of people do paint stucco, but they create a situation where the underlying
stucco can fail or an environment for mold growth.
Painting stucco may be a bad idea in some climates, but certainly not in
Florida. There is no unpainted stucco in Florida, and residential
construction is almost entirely concrete block and stucco. Unpainted
stucco in Florida would take about five minutes to start growing
mildew/mold. After the last near miss with hurricanes where I lived,
one report on damage to homes included the finding that older homes had
less damage than newer ones because they had more coats of paint -
wind-driven rain goes THROUGH concrete block. It is also recommended to
use water-based paint so that the masonry "breathes"; oil-based paint
blisters because it doesn't allow the moisture to exit. All masonry has
Unpainted stucco does not mean uncolored stucco and the structure underneath the
stucco (block, poured concrete, stud frame) makes no difference. While some
paints are mold resistant, using paint as a primary means of mold control is not
an accepted building practice anywhere that I'm aware of.
Special rules don't apply in Florida for stucco. Here's one link I found in
about 30 seconds for a stucco supplier:
Note that they talk about a non-paintable color finish that is weather
I'm not surprised. Note that that same water resistance to water entering the
stucco from rain also applies to water leaving the stucco. That's the issue. You
want water to migrate out of the stucco or you will have mold and other
If external water (ie driven rain) is reaching the block, your house isn't built
properly. There should be a water barrier (like tarpaper, tyvek, but not poly
film) between the block and the stucco.
That's true, but has nothing to do with painting stucco.
It isn't a rule, but there is stuff about Florida that everyone seems to
know as soon as they move down .. trim trees away from roof line and
pick up dropped citrus or you'll have rats. Keep bread and cake in the
fridge or you'll have ants in the kitchen. Everyone gets termites,
sooner or later. Flora-Tam is the best St. Augustine grass. Builders
use concrete block/stucco, period. Parts of structures that don't get
much sun get a lot of mold, so semi-gloss paint will help shed whatever
mold grows on or eats.
Advertising claims prove nothing, other than the well-known fact that
Florida is full of sheisters.
Well, water entering in 100 mph wind is rather different than normal
migration of moisture from masonry.
Not built properly? It didn't blow down and the roof stayed on. Proof
it was built well enough :o)
Wellllll...if I use water-based paint on stucco, as do all of my friends
and neighbors, I guess it DOES have something to do with painting
stucco. I suspect that stick-built homes with lath and stucco have
I've got a stucco arch on my porch in need of "painting". Fog coating
seems to be cement slurry without sand.
I'm thinking now of just rolling on thin stucco patch with some white
concrete pigment, if it needs it. It all needs done so there is nothing
to match. Does that seem workable?
As others have said elastrometric stucco paint but the best paint in
the world isnt going to do any good if the previous layers were less
than what you are appling now. As with most paint jobs preparation is
everything.. A good paint store is going to be the best source of
info. Local climate is also going to effect your paint selection here
again yourr local paint store is going to have the best info.
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