“EIFS” stands for Exterior Insulating Finishing System and – as the name implies – adds insulating value to your home or commercial building. The EIF system offers unlimited color and design potential. Custom profiles of all sizes and design can be added to beautify any structure – be it residential or commercial – and at a price that defies its stone or concrete counterparts. Another “huge” factor in choosing an EIF system is that it virtually eliminates any form of cracking – when properly applied.
“Acrylic” is a finish which is also a three coat system over paper and wire lath with two concrete layers and a smooth textured acrylic finish. The smoother finish is created by the 1-3mm aggregate, (different sizes create a different look – though they look the same from a distance), within the finish product. NOTE: It is essential to insure your stucco contractor is using an elastomeric finish rather than the more common product meant for the EIF system. The elastomeric coating permits more stretching of the finish coat allowing the bridging of the hairline cracking inherent in a cement stucco system. This type of stucco has all the benefits of the California style but with the added benefits of limitless color choices and reduction in visible hairline cracking. It also provides a look that is widely considered to be more modern.
Note to commercial builders: I have been called to a few places now to quote repair work where extensive splitting of the foam, on the EIFS, has occurred throughout the CRU structure. Splitting is occurring in the vertical control joints on large walls, (walls that run 30 or more feet high and hundreds of feet long and might have a control joint every 20 feet or so). The splits in the foam penetrate all the way through and can gap up to a half inch. This may still occur “despite” a perfectly applied system. Industry professionals have concluded, and I agree, that the structural wall system for these CRU’s are not designed for the wind load they are receiving.
*This is an opinion based on an applicators experience rather than an engineer’s math.
**Possible solutions may simply be a matter of installing vertical and horizontal expansion joints rather than using a control joint, which will allow for more movement.