Monolithic cladding can be found throughout New Zealand, despite the vast amount of homes that have monolithic cladding many people are unawares of how to maintain and keep their claddings to a standard that will prevent leaks and damage to the cladding from occurring.
Monolithic cladding has a pastime in New Zealand that stretches back to the early 1920’s. The first monolith cladding homes and buildings in New Zealand were stucco, a thick, cement based plaster that is applied to a backing, ranging from wood to cement structures then painted. Art deco houses spread throughout New Zealand reflect this style of monolithic cladding. The 1970’s textured coated fibre cement was common in builds, similar to stucco but much thinner and made in prefabricated sheets, and applied to the house then later painted.
Leading through to the 1980’s and present day, we see EIFS (Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems). This cladding system is deep and consists of sheets that are made with plaster and polystyrene boards that have a paint finish. Though the technologies have changed through the years many of the problems associated with monolithic cladding remain the same, cladding maintenance and leaky homes.
Monolithic cladding is exposed to the harsh elements of New Zealand’s climate, so it’s important to keep an eye out for any breached areas of the cladding that may exist. Such areas are commonly cracks and holes where water can penetrate the framing, causing issues from mould and mildew through to blistering of paintwork and the list goes on.
General maintenance of monolithic claddings can help the lifespan of the structure. Washing the cladding using a general purpose hose and a soft brush can help to keep up the maintenance of the cladding, but be sure to check for any cracks or holes prior to washing, the water from the hose could cause significant damage to the cladding.
There are many products on the market that sell suitable cleaning products for washing your cladding, talk to your local hardware store for advice on the product that will work best for you. If in doubt, call the professionals, they can clean your cladding to a high standard and access any issues that may exist within the structure of your cladding.
Auckland has experienced a massive onslaught of leaky homes in the past decade, leaking buildings obviously pose a bigger threat to the integrity of your cladding, and this is one reason why it is important to be vigilant when checking your cladding for breaches. We recommend checking your cladding at least once a year.