Stucco News

Question and answers on Stucco and Plastering-- August, 2012

                               Coquina stucco

I am president of our condo association and am in charge of finding out how to repair our buildings which were coated over 17 years ago with what looks like a mixture of stucco and sea shells (some people have told me it is called coquina??? spelling?)  It is discolored and has cracked in many places.  I have researched as much as I can but am not sure what it the best method to repair it.  I have found many sites which recommend using elastameric paint but then other say don't because it traps the moisture and causes more problems in the future.  We had a stucco contractor come in and tell us to use "Brown Coat" which he says is just an old conventional cement based stucco product.  He said he would use EFIS for this job - didn't say why.   We have 18 buildings which are about 60 stucco and 40 cedar siding.  We have been replacing rotten wood on the siding and are going to repaint that but we don't know what to do about the stucco.   Any recommendations would surely be appreciated.

Coquina stucco is an old form of stucco where sea shells were used both for the lime
and for the aggregate. The shells were heated and crushed to make lime, and the broken
pieces were used for the aggregate, as well as sand.

It would be sad to cover up the old sea shell stucco because it is different and may have some historic value. Shells were used years ago for lime,particularly a long way from the limestone quarry. If the stucco has never been painted it can be resurfaced with a new finish coat by adding no less than 25%(we use 50%) Acryl 60 or flex-con or similar chemical additive. This should be done by an experienced plastering contractor. I think you are right about the elastomeric paint-it does trap water in the wall. 5 years ago it was advertised as waterproof. Now that waterproof is out and breathable is in, it is advertised as breathable. I think it is the same thing. Don't put EIFS on there. You'll regret it forever.Particularly after the next hurricane hits Florida.