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Traditional Stucco vs Synthetic Stucco

What is the difference between traditional stucco and synthetic stucco?

There are two basic types of stucco: traditional stucco and synthetic stucco. Each types offers some advantages and disadvantages. Traditional stucco is typically a little more affordable, but synthetic stucco does is more energy efficient.

Traditional Stucco:

The Good:
- Used for centuries
- More affordable than synthetic
- Can last 50 years if properly maintained
- Porous; can accommodate wetter climates
- Low maintenance
- Variety of textures/finishes

The Bad:
- Less energy efficient than synthetic stucco.

The Bottom Line: Traditional stucco is made of natural cement, lime, sand, and water. It is typically installed over a wood lath or wire mesh. It is generally hard and will sound solid when you knock on it. Traditional stucco is very durable and it will last, but it may fade or yellow over time.

Synthetic Stucco

The Good:
- Good insulator
- Will not yellow or fade over time
- Holds color better than traditional stucco
- Better for custom architectural features
- Different textures available

The Bad:
- More expensive
- Non-porous; may lead to water damage

The Bottom Line: Synthetic stucco is a little more expensive than traditional stucco, but it is a much better insulator. The stucco is made of acrylic resins and is the applied to insulation boards. In order to prevent water damage and structural damage to your home, it may be necessary to add a drainage system. When tapped, it will sound hollow, as opposed to the more solid, traditional variety.

Related: Types of Siding

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About the Author

ProMatcher Staff, ProMatcher
Orlando, FL 32803

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