We get this question a lot. Is finding a potential $100,000 problem in your home worth a few hundred dollar inspection? Of course it is. Let’s understand the issue and why a stucco inspection is the most valuable information you can get on a stucco home.
Stucco Problems are invisible,
until they are not. Back in the old days (prior to 2001) most people did not get a stucco inspection. Strange things were happening to stucco homes. The walls inside would start to turn black with mold. Tea stains would happen around window openings. Weird smells would happen. Often, they would contact a mold company and find themselves in for a huge and expensive project.
Why Stucco Inspections are Essential
A stucco inspection is highly recommended for homeowners with stucco walls. Stucco has been a popular choice for exterior cladding for many years, but it can also be vulnerable to various issues if not properly maintained.
Understanding Stucco Damage
Without regular maintenance, you may start to notice stucco damage. Water can get trapped behind the stucco, leading to problems within the wood framing. This can cause significant structural issues that may need major repairs, which are far more expensive than the average inspection cost.
The Stucco Inspection Process
was invented in the 80s in response to a rash of EIFS failures in the Carolinas. People wanted a way they could predict whether the stucco system that was installed was allowing moisture in. The stucco inspection process worked because it was predictive. It shows elevated moisture levels on the wood structure. In many cases problems can be caught well before moisture enters the wall cavity and has a chance to attack the drywall.
Fast forward to the early 2000’s and throughout the Northeastern part of the country, many stucco homes were constructed. These homes were not built with the EIFS that had troubled the south. However, what was discovered was that these homes built with hard coat stucco were failing in exactly the same way. The moisture barriers that were supposed to protect the wood were not installed correctly. Ultimately, the new epicenter of stucco failures had moved north.
Finding a Certified Stucco Inspector
It’s a good idea to hire a certified stucco inspector, like Stucco Safe, who can conduct a thorough examination of your home’s exterior. Professional stucco inspectors are trained to look at different types of stucco applications and identify potential problems. They will also provide a comprehensive report, detailing the current condition of the stucco and any areas that may need attention.
When asking for a stucco inspection there is pressure on buyers from sellers to ask for only a visual inspection. From what we had learned from decades past, there was only one reliable way to detect this problem. With an invasive stucco inspection.
When performing invasive stucco inspections, a professional stucco inspector will be able to detect high moisture and wood rot. This is done by drilling small holes in the stucco system and inserting a moisture meter. The moisture meter provides a reading of moisture level of the wood. It can also detect if the wood has already become soft or has rotted. This is why a stucco inspection is worth it, worth every penny.Why Should I Get A Stucco Inspection with Stucco Testing?
Stucco inspections are an essential part of owning a home with stucco siding. Hiring a professional stucco inspector or a certified stucco inspector for this task will help you identify potential problems early and can save you from major repairs. Taking into account the square footage and ensuring regular maintenance will not only preserve the integrity of your stucco walls but will also save you from costly repairs in the long run.