Stucco Foundation Repair: How To Repair Stucco Foundation

by Editor on April 30, 2013

North Slave Quarters - north side - Arlington House - Arlington National Cemtery - 2012

Stucco makes a beautiful addition to any foundation, covering drab concrete in a lovely finish. However, stucco can crack over time due to exposure to the elements. Patches of stucco often crumble and fall away from the foundation after exposure to moisture in the surrounding ground. This can leave an unsightly pile of crumbled stucco along the perimeter of your house prompting you to seek out repair methods.

Stucco Foundation Repair Tools and Materials

Here, we provide a step by step guide to stucco foundation repair. For those who enjoy do-it-yourself projects, this is a great choice for the weekend.
First, you’ll need to gather all of the necessary tools and materials:

  • Drywall knife. These tools come in a variety of sizes. However, a smaller 4 inch model will be easier to handle than some of the larger options.
  • Wire brush. Again these tools are available in a number of sizes. The best size is the one that fits comfortably in your hand, offering better maneuverability.
  • Trowel to apply stucco. Opt for the size that feels best to you. It may take longer to apply stucco with a smaller trowel, but better control will lead to better results.
  • Rubber float to smooth the stucco.
  • Water.
  • Stucco mixture.

You’ll want to prepare the stucco mixture before starting. To do so, you’ll need the following:

  • Portland cement. A half bag, or about 50 pounds, should be sufficient depending on the extent of the damage.
  • Mason’s or brick sand. You’ll need six shovels full of somewhat damp sand.
  • Hydrated lime. Use just one shovelful.
  • Acrylic bonding agent. Use one half cup.

To prepare the stucco mixture, combine all dry ingredients in a wheelbarrow. Next, add the bonding agent, and slowly add water until the mixture has the consistency of cake frosting. Be careful not to add too much water as the stucco will become too liquid and will not stick well to the foundation. Once you’ve prepared the mixture, you’ll have between a half hour and an hour and a half before the mixture sets.

Stucco Foundation Repair: Step By Step Instructions

To repair damage to a stucco foundation, you’ll need to follow six easy steps:

  1. Remove crumbled or damaged stucco using the drywall knife. Stucco that feels firm to the touch should be left intact.
  2. Clean the exposed surface with the wire brush to ensure you’ve removed all stucco and to roughen the edges of the intact stucco so that the new stucco will adhere to it.
  3. Dampen the wall with water.
  4. Use the trowel to apply the stucco mixture to the exposed foundation.
  5. Apply stucco from the bottom up. Once you’ve applied the coat of stucco, use the flat edge of the trowel to even out the surface.
  6. Use the damp rubber float to smooth out the stucco. Pay particular attention to the edges where the new stucco meets the existing stucco.

A word of caution: considerable stucco damage will require expert help from professionals like those at Stonehenge Foundations.

About the Author

Carl Parrish is an avid DIY blogger that enjoys sharing any tips he may have to aid his fellow handyman and handywoman.  This series of home repair posts were triggered by his enounter with a local company when his home had to undergo a basement excavation.

photo by: dctim1

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