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How Much Does It Cost To Repair Stucco?

Typical Range: $608 - $2,310

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On This Page:

  1. DIY vs. Hiring Costs
  2. Labor, Materials & Install
  3. Stucco Maintenance
  4. Repairing Synthetic vs. Traditional Stucco
  5. Stucco Repair Kits
  6. Conclusion

Stucco is one of the more long-lasting options as a siding for your home. However, despite its longevity, it can occasionally become damaged. Harsh weather conditions and accidents can chip, crack or warp stucco, making repairs necessary.

Repairs should be done quickly to prevent damage to the underlying wood lath and prevent water penetration. Even minor cracks can lead to significant damage, so if your stucco is in need of repair, it is important to handle the situation immediately to minimize the risk of additional damage. Bonus Tip: If the crack or hole was caused by an underlying problem, be certain to fix the underlying issue before tackling the repair to prevent having to replicate the chore later.

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National Average $1,374
Typical Range $608 - $2,310
Low End - High End $250 - $5,000

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,891 HomeAdvisor members in .

DIY vs. Hiring Costs

The decision of whether to tackle stucco repair on your own or hire a professional to do the job depends on several factors. For instance, if the crack is a hairline crack or a small chip, you may feel comfortable using a stucco repair kit to do the job yourself. Or, if you have extensive masonry experience, you may decide to handle larger cracks and holes.

If you have the expertise needed, repairing as a DIY project can save you significant money, since contractors typically charge between $40 to $50 per hour, or $60 to $120 per square foot, depending on whether they provide estimates based on square footage or time required to complete the job.

Another determining factor in your decision about whether to handle the job yourself may be where the crack or hole is located. Cracks in hard- to-reach areas or around structures like windows, doorways, or gables complicate the repair process, making it likely that a professional may be needed to adequately handle the job.

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Labor, Materials, and Installation

Because of the skill level required to repair and match the repaired material to the existing stucco, many contractors consider stucco repair to be a virtual art form. Labor costs are generally figured in one of two ways, either by the hour or by the square foot.

Labor Costs

Nationally, contractors charge anywhere from $40 to $50 per hour to repair stucco, or from $60 to $120 per square foot. The two main reasons for these costs are the complexity of the repair and the fact that it takes time, as it involves waiting for each coat to cure before proceeding to the next step.

Material Costs

Material costs vary according to the type used. Traditional stucco costs $10 to $15 per 80-90 lb. bag. One bag can cover approximately 100-180 square feet, making the cost for traditional stucco $0.05 to $0.10 per square foot.

Synthetic stucco is another matter, however. Synthetic stucco costs $40 to $50 per 5 gallon bucket. One bucket covers approximately 100-250 square feet, making the cost $0.25 to $0.50 per square foot.

Finishing materials cost around $22, depending on the thickness and quality of the mix. Since a new vapor barrier and new metal lath are often needed when repairing a hole or wide crack in stucco, it is a good idea to budget an additional $40 to $50 for these supplies as well.

If paint is needed to match the repaired patches of stucco to the existing structure, it may be necessary to paint the entire house. For a 1,500 square foot home, the cost of painting the exterior may be anywhere from $300 to $500.

Additionally, contractors typically charge more for repairs to homes with architectural details like multiple stories, non-standard window shapes, shutters, and porches. These features can add to labor costs significantly, especially if your contractor charges by the hour instead of by the square foot.

Installation and Repair of Your Stucco

Repairs should be done when nighttime temperatures are consistently above 40 degrees because freezing temperatures can ruin uncured stucco. Excessively hot temperatures are also bad because heat leaches the moisture out of the material, stopping it from curing properly. Therefore, spring and fall may be the best times of year to tackle stucco repair.

When working with fresh stucco, it is important to remember to wear gloves. The alkalis in wet cement can burn the skin. Keep a bucket of clean water nearby in case you accidentally touch the material with your hands. Rinse the area immediately if that occurs.

It is important to note that repairing stucco is a time-intensive process, largely because you must wait for each coat to cure before adding a new coat. Here are some general steps to take to get your repair project going in the right direction:

  1. Don your safety goggles and use a hammer or chisel to break the loose stucco completely away. Use caution during this process to avoid damaging the underlying wood lath supports.
  2. Once you have the large pieces of damaged stucco removed, chip away at the edges until you get to the stucco that is firmly adhered to its lath. If you run into metal mesh, use snips to cut it away and remove it.
  3. Cut a piece of builder’s paper large enough to cover the exposed lath all the way to where the stucco meets the lath. Fasten the paper in place with roofing nails. Repeat the process with a second piece of paper.
  4. Place a piece of galvanized mesh over the paper and trim it tightly against the edge of the stucco. Once you have the mesh in place, secure it to the paper and wooden lath with roofing nails. Now your surface area is ready to receive new stucco.
  5. Follow the directions on the back of your traditional stucco mix bag to mix the dry ingredients according to the prescribed recipe. Blend dry ingredients with a mortar hoe. Add the bonding agent. Then, stir the water in slowly, until the mix has the consistency of cake frosting. Important Note: Adding too much water will make the mixture too loose for use. Adding the water in slowly will help you avoid this bad outcome.
  6. Take note of the manufacturer’s instruction regarding how long the new mixture will be workable. Try to complete the next steps while your stucco is still pliable.
  7. Wet the edges of the old stucco so that the new stucco will adhere to it easily. Scoop hand-sized sections of wet stucco onto a trowel and toss them at the mesh until it is completely covered.
  8. Take a finishing trowel and smooth the mix. Pack it against the existing stucco with a brick trowel. Keep adding the mixture in this fashion until the layer is approximately ½ inch below the existing surface.
  9. Wait for the newly applied stucco to lose its wet sheen. Once that happens, score the surface so that your next layer will adhere to it nicely. Cover the patch with plastic.
  10. Wait for seven days, and mix a new batch of stucco. Remove the plastic. Lightly mist the patch with water, and trowel on a 3/8 inch thick layer of stucco, working from the bottom up. Pack down the edges. Wait for the wet sheen to disappear, and then trowel the patch smooth. Cover again with plastic.
  11. Wait three more days. Mix up another batch of stucco, remove the plastic, and mist the patch with water. Trowel the finish coat on, following the technique that will produce a finish similar to the finish of the old stucco.
  12. Let the new patch cure for approximately one week before painting to match.

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Stucco Maintenance

Stucco is extremely durable and requires little maintenance when compared with some other exterior materials. To clean, simply use a sprayer attached to a hose. It is recommended that you refrain from using a pressure washer, as too much pressure can damage the material. If mold has discolored your stucco, a mixture of 25 percent bleach to 75 percent hot water can be used to tackle a mold issue. Apply the bleach with a sponge and allow it to soak in for several minutes. Then, simply rinse it clean.

After waiting a day, re-examine the stucco and repeat the procedure as necessary until the mold is gone. If at that point you need to re-touch the color, use an acrylic or elastomeric paint specifically designed for masonry materials. This type of paint may also be used to repair hairline cracks. If, however, the crack is as wide as the edge of a credit card, a repair patch kit can be useful.

Additionally, it is important to periodically check sealant around windows, doors, and other penetration points to ensure that your stucco is holding up in these potential problem areas.

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Repairing Synthetic vs. Traditional Stucco

Traditional stucco is made of cement, sand, lime, and water. It is heavier and more substantial than synthetic stucco. It provides a better moisture barrier than synthetic and should be considered for use in humid climates. It also withstands blows from ladders, rocks slung from under lawn mowers, and other blunt hits that may occur.

Since traditional stucco is cheaper than synthetic, repairs may also be less expensive. Synthetic stucco begins with a layer of foam insulation board covered with a layer of wire or fiberglass mesh. Then, the wet stucco mixture is applied. Synthetic stucco is softer to the touch than traditional and is a great insulator.

Additionally, synthetic stucco is more energy efficient, and holds its color better than traditional. Because it is more flexible, repairs to synthetic are easier, and may last longer. Its flexibility also makes it possible to use keystones or other accents as decoration more easily.

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Stucco Repair Kits

For minor repairs, an easy option may be to use a kit specifically designed for stucco repair. These kits can be found in your local home improvement store. These repair kits range in cost from approximately $5.00 to $30 or more, depending on the size of the kit and the strength of the concrete.

Some kits have additives in their products which speed up dry time, making the process more streamlined. Other kits are specially designed to handle small cracks without actually mixing cement, making them convenient for the weekend DIY warrior. Some repair kits come pre-mixed for ease of use, though these are best used for very small repairs rather than large patch jobs. When using a repair kit, it is important to take note of what the instructions say about dry time. If your stucco is not applied within the suggested time frame, it will likely not be usable. Avoid wasting money by paying attention to the times specified on the label of your stucco repair kit.

Additionally, it is important to remember when using a repair kit that the area you are repairing must be adequately prepared to receive the patch. That means removing any loose material and chipping away at all stucco not adhered firmly before using the kit materials.

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With adequate time and patience, you can repair stucco as a DIY project. However, if you are unsure about how to accomplish it or about whether you have the time to complete it alone, the best course to follow is to hire a professional for the job.

Professionals ensure that any repair work done meets your standard. Additionally, professionals can often more closely match your existing stucco texture and finish when patching a substantial crack. With skill in matching colors, professionals can also more closely match the color of the original stucco more accurately. Hire only licensed, insured, and bonded professionals to ensure your complete satisfaction with a job well done.

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