Spraying Stucco Vs. Hand Application - Which Is Better?

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  • 8-20 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 30-500
What You'll Need
Eye Protection
Face Mask

Stucco is a long-lasting finish that is durable, versatile, and economical. Given the versatile nature of stucco, there are countless applications for stucco and the general ease of use makes it highly sought after. Stucco can also be applied in different ways. Two of the most popular ways are hand application and spraying.

Hand Stucco Application
When you apply stucco with a trowel, it is usually in an outdoor environment. You are going to be using the stucco as an exterior siding, or finish to a building or wall. Outdoor applications require heavier mixtures because they are exposed to the elements. Be sure to have a ladder available to climb up to the top portions of the walls you are covering.

The Process for Hand Application
Applying the stucco to a building's exterior is pretty basic and straightforward.

Clean Area - Make sure the area is clean of any debris. You may need to scrape off old paint or peel off wallpaper before you begin for a clean, level surface.

Mix Stucco - Using Portland Cement, sand, and water you mix it until it is a wet and thick mixture.

Apply Small Amount - One of the biggest mistakes people make when applying stucco, is they use too much stucco on the trowel. This causes you to work it around too much and it begins to lose its bond on the surface.

Move Trowel Smoothly - Keeping even pressure move the trowel in circular sweeps on the wall. As long as you keep even pressure and do not work the trowel too much, you should have a great looking finish when you're done.

Spray-On Application

When you are going to apply stucco to interior areas such as ceilings and walls, you will be using a slightly different, lighter, and looser mixture. The spray-on application requires protective eye gear and sometimes face masks because the debris can be harmful if ingested. Follow all safety procedures.

Spray-On Stucco Process

Clean Area - Always make sure the area is clean and level surface.

Mix Stucco - Unlike exterior stucco, spray stucco comes in 40-pound bags where you just add water and stir until it is a consistent mixture with no lumps.

Spray - Pour some of the mixture into the sprayer and begin to evenly coat ceilings or walls. The key is to continue moving and do not linger in one area too long.

Which Method Is Better?
Determining the better method is up to the individual. Both applications have their own distinct advantages. Spraying is easier and quicker, but best for indoor uses. Likewise, troweling allows you and evenly coated surface, the first time and is best for outdoor uses.