Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions2023-08-12T20:35:57-07:00

Nurse Stucco Logo | San Diego Stucco RepairIf you own a stucco home you are aware of the low-maintenance, sound-insulating benefits of this beautiful exterior material.  We are here to answer any of your questions – none are too simple or complicated – so call us and have a conversation with Blaine or Darren. Better yet, call and make an appointment and let us see your home or commercial project so we can answer your specific questions intelligently.

What is Monokote® Spray Fireproofing?2023-08-18T22:51:06-07:00

Monokote® is a popular fireproofing material used in office buildings, schools, hospitals, warehouses, and other large buildings that are constructed out of concrete and steel. Resembling wet cement, Monokote® fireproofing spray is applied throughout a building’s interior in order to help prevent structural failure during a high-temperature blaze. In many areas, building codes require the use of “passive” fire-protection materials like Monokote® in certain structures. Not only will this help prevent a building from collapsing, but it will give the occupants of a building more time to escape in the event of a fire. This latter benefit is especially important in high-occupancy structures where people can become trapped inside if the right precautions haven’t been taken.

Nurse Stucco is the spray Monokote fireproofing contractor of choice for materials and installation in Southern California and San Diego County. We are a family owned and operated C-35 contractor company that has built a reputation for continually surpassing the expectations of our customers. When it comes to protecting your building from a disastrous fire, Nurse Stucco has you covered.

Call us at (619) 561-7429 or Contact Us today for more information about Monokote fireproofing materials or to request a bid on your project. Fireproofing your building today can potentially save you thousands or even millions of dollars in repair costs in the aftermath of a fire. More importantly, it may even save lives.

Any tips for taking care of my stucco?2023-08-14T15:47:56-07:00

Unlike other siding materials, stucco has some serious staying power. When properly applied, it can last for decades without needing maintenance. According to a Department of Energy study, “Properly applied stucco will have a useful service life of 100 years.”

  1. Inspect stucco at least annually for cracks or damage and repair them as soon as possible so water doesn’t seep behind the stucco finish.  Unless you know the exact cause of the damage, it’s possible that you need a closer look prior to “covering up” a potential long-term problem.
  2. Stucco typically doesn’t need cleaning. Stains may indicate water drainage issues from other parts of your home, dirt from home improvement efforts, or changes in your landscape design. If it’s a particularly dirty wall area, hose it off with your garden hose.
  3. Use gutters and check them periodically to make sure they’re not clogged, damaged, or leaking water onto the stucco wall. This is Southern California and we all know from the popular song lyrics that it never rains here. Living here though, we also know that when it does… it does!
  4. Don’t put planters that hold water, such as window boxes, against your stucco. If you do choose this type of landscaping, MAKE SURE there’s adequate drainage.  The paper used in stucco is referred to as a Water-Resistant barrier, it’s not Water-Proof!
  5. Trim trees and shrubs near your walls so they don’t rub against your stucco.
  6. Use drip irrigation systems around the perimeter of the home to water your shrubs. Avoid sprinkling or spraying water onto the siding to water the plants. It may simplify watering your shrubs, but not so good for your stucco walls.
  7. Keep soil levels around the perimeter of your home below the stucco finish. Stucco is porous and will wick up moisture from your lawn or flower bed, just about any soil touching it.

Stucco is one of the most popular siding materials in use in San Diego.  We use stucco both for residential and commercial construction and have been since the early California settlers – and we see great examples in our historical landmarks as well as homes built here in the 1900s forward as we’ve grown and expanded.

When you find yourself in need of our stucco services – small repairs, restucco for your existing home, and new stucco construction, reach out to Nurse Stucco for your free estimate.

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Can You DIY Stucco or Should You Hire A Professional?2023-08-14T15:50:21-07:00

Whether to DIY stucco or hire someone depends on your level of expertise, time availability, and the complexity of your project. Stucco is a versatile material used for exterior walls, and it requires a certain level of skill to apply properly.

Here are some factors to consider:

1. Your Skill Level: Stucco application involves mixing and applying the material evenly to achieve a smooth and durable finish. If you have experience working with similar materials and have basic construction skills, you may be able to tackle a small stucco project successfully.

2. Your Available Time and Effort: Applying stucco can be a time-consuming process, especially if you’re an amateur.  While there are a lot of YouTube videos, a 2-minute video doesn’t really get into the time required to complete the step correctly! It requires careful preparation, including surface cleaning, applying a scratch coat, and then a finishing coat. If you have limited time or prefer to focus on other tasks, hiring a professional like Nurse Stucco may be a better option for you.

3. Tools and Equipment: Stucco application requires specific tools like trowels, mixing equipment, and possibly scaffolding. If you don’t already own these tools or are not willing to invest in them, outsourcing the job might be more cost-effective.

4. Complexity of the Project: If your stucco project involves intricate designs, and architectural details, or requires repairing the existing stucco layers (lath and water-resistant paper, it’s recommended to hire an experienced professional. They can ensure proper adhesion, moisture protection, and an aesthetically pleasing finish.

5. Safety Considerations: Working with stucco involves handling potentially hazardous materials. If you’re unsure about safety protocols or don’t feel comfortable working at heights (if applicable), hiring a professional who is trained in proper safety measures is advisable.

In summary, small and straightforward stucco projects with basic surfaces may be suitable for a confident DIY enthusiast. However, large, complex projects or those involving special designs and repairs are better left to skilled professionals who can ensure a quality outcome. Remember to always prioritize safety and consider the time and effort involved before making a decision.

If you have questions about your stucco project, give us a call at (619) 561-7429 and ask us for a FREE ESTIMATE for your project.  There’s NO OBLIGATION with our estimate, and it will give you a better understanding of your project. You can use our Contact Form too!

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Why does the stucco flake off at the bottom of my walls?2023-08-14T15:52:09-07:00

This phenomenon is normally caused by moisture being drawn from the surrounding soil. This is usually caused by the stucco coming in contact with soil and extended exposure to moisture, which allows the salts and minerals contained in your soil to “wick up” and migrate to the surface. This will eventually deteriorate and/or cause delamination of the stucco from the wall.

The most common causes are: water from sprinklers/lawn irrigation systems continually soaking the wall, followed by improper site drainage (water draining toward the wall). Moisture in the soil or water sitting at the base of the wall travels up the wall in a wicking action; due to a lack of Weep Screed at the bottom of your stucco walls.  This is frequently seen in homes built during and prior to the early 1980s construction boom.

This issue of “wicking” was addressed in our San Diego Building Codes in the early 1990s and isn’t seen on homes built after FHA screed was included in our San Diego building codes.  Unfortunately, we still see it on new newer homes in the county/rural areas of San Diego.  This is a straightforward issue to remediate, but it is labor intense and really requires an on-site inspection so we’re not just guessing.

The best part, our estimates are FREE, so call us at (619) 561-7429 and ask us for an estimate on your stucco repairs.  You can also use our Contact Form to request your estimate, and send us pictures.

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Why do small cracks appear in stucco?2023-08-14T15:55:41-07:00

Another term for this is check cracking. Check cracking in stucco is normal. As stucco cures the water evaporates. This evaporation process causes the stucco to slightly shrink. As the stucco shrinks the small cracks may start to appear. Environmental factors can increase the likeliness of check cracking. In hot dry weather a light spray(mist) of clean water is recommended and may help reduce the appearance of check cracking.  This should probably be a to-do on your monthly list throughout the summers in San Diego.

Combine it with your monthly cleaning (spraying your walls with water to remove the dust), and you ‘should’ be good to go. If you see larger cracks (1/8″ or larger), give Nurse Stucco a call at (619) 561-7429 and ask for a FREE ESTIMATE.  You can also upload pictures through our Contact Form, so we’re looking at the same project.

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How long should stucco last?2023-08-14T15:56:35-07:00

While you can’t really list the service life of stucco in a specific number of years, properly applied and maintained stucco, is as more durable than other commonly used siding material. Its hard surface resists abrasion, and stucco can take a lot of physical abuse. It stands up to all sorts of climates, from cold to hot and wet to dry. To give you an idea, stucco has been with us since the early Roman times, and some of those buildings are still around. Here in the US, many homes built with stucco in the mid to late 1800s and early 1900s have had very little maintenance and remain in good shape today.

At Nurse Stucco we offer a 25-year warranty on our new stucco and restucco work.  Ask us for specific details as to how we can apply our standard warranty to your stucco repair, and we’ll put our warranty in writing!

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Can you repair stucco that has been painted?2023-08-14T15:59:54-07:00

Yes, it is possible to repair stucco that has been painted. However, the process will require some additional steps, compared to repairing normal (unpainted) stucco. Here’s a general guide on how to repair painted stucco:

1. Inspect the damaged area: Assess the extent of the damage, including any cracks, holes, or chips in the stucco.

2. Clean the area: Use a wire brush or scraper to remove any loose or flaking paint around the damaged area. Thoroughly clean the surface to ensure proper adhesion of the repair materials.

3. Repair the stucco: Prepare a stucco patching compound according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Apply the compound over the damaged area using a trowel or putty knife. Make sure to feather the edges of the patch to blend it with the surrounding stucco, and be sure to match the existing stucco pattern.

4. Allow the patch to dry: Follow the recommended drying time provided by the manufacturer of the stucco patching compound. This typically takes several hours or even overnight.

5. Sand and smooth the patch: Once the patch is fully dry, use sandpaper or a sanding block to smooth the surface of the repaired area. Feather the edges of the patch to create a seamless transition between the patch and the surrounding stucco.

6. Prime the repaired area: Apply a coat of primer specifically designed for stucco surfaces to the repaired area. This helps to improve the adhesion of the paint and ensure an even finish.

7. Repaint the stucco: After the primer has dried, repaint the repaired area to match the color and texture of the surrounding stucco. Use an exterior-grade paint suitable for stucco surfaces.

Remember to always follow the specific instructions provided by the manufacturer of the stucco patching compound, primer, and paint. Additionally, if the damage is extensive or requires professional expertise, it is recommended to consult Nurse Stucco – your local stucco repair specialist.  Ask us for a FREE ESTIMATE, and we’ll get you on the right path to your home improvement efforts.

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Why do I need a licensed stucco contractor for my stucco repair?2023-08-14T16:03:08-07:00

Using a licensed stucco professional like Nurse Stucco for your stucco repair is essential for several reasons:

1. Expertise and Experience: Licensed stucco contractors have undergone training and acquired the necessary skills and knowledge to handle stucco repairs effectively. They know the proper techniques, materials, and tools to use, ensuring that the repair is done right the first time.

2. Quality Workmanship: Licensed professionals are committed to delivering high-quality workmanship. They have experience in working with different types of stucco systems and can identify underlying issues that may be causing the damage. Their expertise ensures that the repair is done correctly, resulting in a long-lasting and visually appealing finish.

3. Compliance with Building Codes: Stucco repairs must comply with local building codes and regulations. Licensed stucco contractors are familiar with these requirements and will ensure that the repairs meet all necessary standards. This helps to avoid any potential legal or safety issues down the line.

4. Insurance and Liability Coverage: Licensed stucco contractors carry liability insurance to protect you and your property in case of any accidents or damages that may occur during the repair process. Hiring a licensed professional gives you peace of mind knowing that you are protected.

5. Warranty and Guarantees: Licensed contractors provide warranties or guarantees for their work. This means that if any issues arise after the repair is complete, they will come back and fix them at no additional cost. This added protection ensures that you receive true value for your investment and avoid any unexpected expenses.

Hiring a licensed stucco professional for your stucco repair ensures that the job is done properly, safely, and in compliance with regulations. Their expertise, quality workmanship, insurance coverage, and warranty options make them the best choice for your stucco repair needs.  CLICK HERE to check our license.

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