Bulging Stucco? - January 7th 2004

Bulging Stucco?

Q: We have a 45 year old house with stucco exterior with embedded rock and glass particles, the stucco is bulging away from the wall of the house along the entire one side for about one foot from the bottom where the basement and walls meet, which is about three feet above ground level. In a few areas the stucco has broken away in about one-inch diameter holes, what is causing this and how do we fix it?

A: It sounds like maybe your basement is not properly insulated or maybe not at all. Your basement could be venting moisture during the winter months. The moisture gets trapped under the stucco and freezes during cold weather. When it freezes, it expands and pushes out the stucco. Click here for an article on "Basement finishing details".