What is a Stucco Inspection?
A stucco inspection is a series of tests and analyses performed on your home’s exterior surfaces to determine if the stucco is performing appropriately. We do this mainly by testing moisture levels, through the use of moisture meters on the surface behind the stucco. Our Stucco Inspection includes both a non-invasive visual inspection, along with an invasive inspection.
What’s involved with a Non-Invasive Stucco Inspection?
A non-invasive stucco inspection is a visual evaluation to assess the integrity of the stucco; including cracking, bulging, and deterioration. We identify how the stucco was installed to determine if it is according to today’s standards.
During the visual stucco inspection, we look for the following:
- Expansion Joints. When stucco is installed, there should be expansion joints where the stucco meets dissimilar materials.
- Installation of a Weep Screed. A Weep Screed is a break in the stucco that prevents water from “wicking up” and allows water to drain behind the stucco. The phrase “wicking up” means that moisture is drawn from the ground and pulled up into the stucco.
- Flashing Details. We evaluate flashing details throughout the system, especially at roof and wall intersections. Specifically, we look for Kickout Flashing, a piece of metal that kicks out the water away from the wall.
- Indicators that the system is holding moisture. Indicators could be discoloration of the product or the sign of efflorescence, material created by moisture pushing through the backside of concrete; leaving a white powdery mineral deposit.
The visual inspection allows us to understand the weakest links, and where best to perform the invasive stucco inspection.
What is an Invasive Stucco Inspection?
Our invasive inspection process consists of the following:
- We drill with a probe through the stucco (2) 1/4 inch holes (side by side) to test the moisture content of the wood behind the stucco. A moisture meter is used to perform this moisture reading. During this process we are also measuring the thickness of the stucco. Stucco should be 3/4 – 1 inch thick. This thickness is important for longevity and performance of the stucco.
- We look to understand the integrity of the materials behind the stucco, to determine whether moisture is penetrating the structure of your home. This could lead to moisture damage and/or mold behind the stucco that is not visible without a proper test.
- When necessary, we perform core sampling to identify the integrity of materials behind the stucco. Core sampling is when we drill a a one inch cutout of the stucco to assess the wood behind the stucco. We recommend core sampling when moisture readings are high and the integrity of the material behind the stucco is in question.
We follow the Exterior Design Institute (EDI) Standards of Practice. Our Stucco Inspectors are EDI Certified. Our full credentials are listed under each inspector. Read more about our team!