Building a Stucco Wall | QUIKRETE: Cement and Concrete Products
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A great way to view and understand your building or repair project before you get started. Find out just about everything you need to know by watching the video below.

Building a Stucco Wall

For centuries, Stucco has proven to be one of the most enduring, versatile and weather resistant exterior wall finishes available - with its variety of colors and textures, stucco continues to be one of the most popular wall systems.

Project Instructions

Step 1
Attach two layers of Grade D, waterproof building paper using galvanized nails or staples in a shingled fashion over the wall sheathing extending 16 inches around all corners.

TIP: vertical seams should be overlapped by 6 inches and horizontal seams should be overlapped by 4 inches.

Step 2
Install trim accessories.

TIP: trim accessories can be cut to size using metal snips but are often very sharp, so always wear gloves when working with these materials.

Step 3
Install casing beads.

TIP: casing beads for a 3 coat system should be 3/4 inch thick; casing beads for a 1 or 2 coat system should be 1/2 inch thick.

Step 4
Install a galvanized, self-furring, expanded metal lath or 1” woven wire stucco netting over the entire surface also extending 16 inches around all corners.  The lath or stucco netting should over-lap by 1” on the horizontal seams and 2” on the vertical seams.

NOTE: galvanized nails or staples should be used every 6 inches both vertically and horizontally and should penetrate the studs a minimum of 1 inch.

Step 5
Place control joints to create wall panels no larger than 144 square feet. Keep the panels as square as possible.

Step 6
Place expansion joints anywhere there exists wall expansion joints.

Step 7
Install corner trim on all outside edges to protect the exposed stucco and to provide clean finished lines.

Step 8
Mix the base coat stucco to a workable consistency.

NOTE: the proper consistency is achieved when the stucco will “hang” on a trowel held at a 90 degree angle - stucco that is too wet will sag; stucco that is too dry will not adhere properly to the metal lath.

Step 9
Apply the base coat stucco using a square trowel held at a 45 degree angle. Use firm trowel pressure to force the stucco into the lath. Work from the bottom of the wall up and apply at a thickness of about 3/8 inch over the entire area.

NOTE: for one coat stucco systems, apply QUIKRETE One Coat Fiberglass Reinforced Stucco in a single application at ½ inch thick.

Step 10
Screed the stucco to a uniform depth of 3/8 inch using a straight edge.

Step 11
Scratch 1/8 inch deep horizontal grooves into the base coat with a raking tool once the stucco has become thumb-print hard.

Step 12
Cure the scratch coat for 24 to 48 hours.

Step 13
Mix and apply another 3/8 inch layer of base coat stucco directly to the scratch coat.

Step 14
Screed the surface using a straight board or darby to 3/8 inch thickness and fill any surface voids with additional base coat. The total combined basecoat depth should be 3/4 of an inch thick.

Step 15
Float the surface uniformly once the stucco has lost its sheen using a wooden trowel and cure the base coat with a fine water mist for 24-48 hours.

Step 16
Apply a 1/8 inch thick coating of QUIKRETE Finish Coat Stucco in the preferred application working from the bottom of the wall to the top. Complete the entire wall in one application.

NOTE: it is important to keep the surface damp for by applying a fine water mist over several days.

Step 17
Fill all control joints, expansion joints and gaps with a backer rod and QUIKRETE non-sag Polyurethane Sealant.

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