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April 19, 2023

Synthetic vs. Traditional Stucco: Comparing Two Popular Exterior Finish Systems

Synthetic Stucco Vs Traditional Stucco Stucco is an ideal choice whether you are building from scratch or revamping existing architecture, whether that means new exterior finishes or renovating old. As it is composed of cement-based products and can be textured or formed into unique shapes for exterior architecture designs. Traditional stucco is composed of cement, […]

Synthetic Stucco Vs Traditional Stucco

Stucco is an ideal choice whether you are building from scratch or revamping existing architecture, whether that means new exterior finishes or renovating old. As it is composed of cement-based products and can be textured or formed into unique shapes for exterior architecture designs.

Traditional stucco is composed of cement, lime and coarse sand that can be mixed to produce various hues and textures ranging from smooth to rough.


Stucco is an increasingly popular exterior wall treatment option for homes. This weatherproof material comes in various colors and textures to meet any decor taste or need; plus it acts as a good sound and fire barrier!

Traditional stucco offers home owners an economical solution to protecting their properties from the elements. It can be colored to complement your other siding colors and is less likely to crack, rot, or buckle than other types of siding materials.

Synthetic stucco is technically known as an External Insulation Finishing System (EIFS), developed after World War II to provide insulation for masonry buildings in Europe.

This type of stucco is composed of polymers and sand mixed together into a wet-mix product and sold in 5 gallon buckets.

Synthetic stucco is more expensive due to the addition of polymers; however, its durability makes up for any additional expenses and allows it to withstand extreme temperatures more effectively than its traditional counterpart.

Synthetic stucco also boasts the added advantage of being customizable, as it can be scored and textured to resemble stone, brick or other exterior finishes for increased resale appeal. This can increase home values by making them more desirable to potential buyers.

Synthetic stucco is more susceptible to moisture intrusion than traditional stucco, which may lead to mold or mildew growth and cause structural damage in your home.

Stucco repairs can be tricky, requiring an experienced contractor who understands which materials and techniques will restore it back to its original state.

Invest in professional installation if you want your home protected from the elements and enhanced visual appeal, as this ensures your stucco is properly installed for long-term durability.


Traditional stucco is composed of Portland cement and lime combined with sand, typically used to provide exterior building cladding on commercial properties. While its primary application may be commercial buildings, stucco offers numerous benefits that make it suitable for use on residential structures as well.

Stucco is an extremely durable material, standing up against ladders, golf balls, hail storms, woodpeckers and any debris that might hit it. Plus it resists moisture better and will last much longer with proper care and regular maintenance.

Synthetic stucco is another option for exterior building cladding, offering waterproof and energy-efficient protection in various styles, colors and textures. Plus, its more flexible nature means you can personalize it by adding keystones or accent pieces as desired.

Cladding with aluminum panels is more complex to install than traditional stucco, so a professional should perform installation. Furthermore, sealing all exterior walls, window and door frames to keep water out is crucial.

Select a high quality synthetic stucco finish, as its material should be flexible enough to reduce crack translation and not trap moisture in walls. Also make sure it drains freely since EIFS that does not drain properly can often result in mold growth and structural issues.

As synthetic stucco products can be quite costly, it is wise to inquire with their manufacturer regarding warranties and guarantees. A proper warranty should ensure you won't need to replace it at some point down the line.

One drawback of synthetic stucco is its difficulty to be repaired. Any cracks or holes found can be difficult and expensive to address.

As synthetic stucco does not breathe, any issues with ventilation systems or lack of flashing around a roof could cause moisture damage that causes wood sheathing and framing rot which will require expensive repairs to restore. Furthermore, delaminating stucco can detach from exterior walls of buildings - potentially leading to delamination and detachment issues as well.


Synthetic stucco is known for its attractive appearance that's easy to maintain and can even be colored, yet requires occasional maintenance. You can brush or spray the surface to remove dirt or other grit, while high pressure water hoses can also help rinse it clean.

Traditional stucco has an unassuming appearance that can be painted for more vivid color or to match building architecture. Stucco typically contains natural pigments like brick dust or burnt clay which helps bring out textures and shapes of buildings exteriors.

Stucco finishes come in many varieties, from cat face, which has an irregular, smooth surface, to dash and lace finishes with exposed aggregate on their surfaces. Each texture offers something unique for homes looking to increase aesthetic appeal.

Enhance the texture of your stucco exterior by adding materials such as stones, glass chips or brick. This will add extra protection from environmental elements and prolong its life span.

In tropical environments with palm trees, you can opt for a stucco exterior that evokes its surroundings by using tropical blue or teal hues in combination with white accents to create a lively and cheerful ambiance.

Combine traditional stucco exteriors with shingled roofs for an eye-catching combination, creating a novel feel and accentuating windows.

Stucco can also be an attractive covering over less desirable siding materials like cinder block or concrete, providing structural strength without losing aesthetic appeal. Stucco makes an excellent option when aesthetic appeal is still desired but structural strength remains key.

Synthetic stucco, also known as Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems (EIFS), first developed in Europe years ago to better waterproof houses is now an increasingly popular siding material in the United States. EIFS can be found on homes of many designs and offers homeowners an energy efficient insulation option to save money on energy bills.


Synthetic stucco is an economical, durable option with minimal upkeep requirements, but understanding its proper care requirements is key for its use.

Cleaning synthetic stucco regularly is the key to maintaining its appearance. Spray it with special cleaning solution and brush gently over its surface until dirt and dust have been eliminated from its pores. A garden hose equipped with high pressure rinse can also help.

Resealing synthetic stucco surfaces is another effective way of maintaining them and helping to prevent water damage, rotting and other issues related to non-breathable material. This will also prevent water seepage entering the substrate through cracks in its surface and lead to significant water losses over time.

Synthetic stucco can outlive traditional stucco in terms of longevity; however, regular sealing needs to be performed on it in order to preserve its condition - at minimum every 4-5 years.

Synthetic stucco is not breathable, meaning that any excess water collects under its walls and causes serious mold or rot issues in underlying structures. While synthetic stucco offers several advantages over its alternative forms, the major drawback lies within this trait of non-breathability.

If your synthetic stucco is showing signs of wear and tear, hiring a professional is best. They know exactly how to work with this material so it stays looking its best over time.

Be aware that synthetic stucco is susceptible to cracking and weather damage, requiring costly repairs in the future.

If you want to avoid these issues, hiring a certified EIFS contractor like us would be beneficial. We will provide an accurate cost estimate while assuring that the system is safe and sound; additionally they can conduct inspections to look for any damages which need repairing.

Are you ready to transform your home or business with beautiful, durable stucco? Look no further than Wallder Construction LLC. Our team of expert stucco professionals is dedicated to delivering top-quality results on every project. Contact us today to schedule your consultation and take the first step towards enhancing the beauty and value of your property. Don't settle for anything less than the best – choose Wallder Construction LLC for all your stucco needs!

Disclaimer: This post was created with the assistance of Artificial Intelligence, and we have edited it to the best of our abilities for accuracy and relevance. Please note that pricing may vary and is not one-size-fits-all. Additionally, we have no affiliation with any of the companies or products listed in this post besides Wallder Construction LLC.

Article written by Samuel
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