Traditionally, the materials used for building houses were wood, metal, glass, bricks, and cement, to name a few. But since then, professionals in the construction industry have constantly been coming up with new formulas by blending chemicals and minerals into existing materials to create more durable products.
These manufactured building products are known to perform better over time and have lower maintenance characteristics. This means that the products are more cost-effective and efficient than raw materials because they will last longer without undergoing maintenance.
Render is among these manufactured building products. It’s usually applied to the exteriors of houses to reduce the impacts of weathering and to improve the overall appearance. Finding the right rendering system for your property is crucial because it will last for 20 to 30 years on average.
So, before you go ahead and hire professionals to apply rendering to your property, you must take the time to understand the differences between these materials. The traditional way of house rendering uses a mix of lime, water, and sand, but there are other options that you can consider, such as:
Option #1 Cement
The cement render is cheaper than the other materials on this list, but it requires multiple layers of coating and, therefore, costs more labour. Usually, cement render is applied two to three times and would need regular repainting to maintain the appearance. But it’s prone to developing cracks over time, allowing rainwater to seep in through the walls.
Option #2 Mineral
The mineral render is cement-based, but it’s mixed with lime and polymers to strengthen the bonds. Unlike the cement render, it only takes one coating and is relatively cheaper than the other materials. However, it’s also absorbent, which means you’ll need to paint over the render to protect it against the rain.
Option #3 Polymer
The polymer render is usually pre-mixed with white cement, lime, and other plastic-based products to make it less vulnerable to cracks. It comes in different pigments and is already thorough-coloured, which means you won’t have to paint over the polymer render anymore, unlike the cement and mineral.
Option #4 Acrylic
The acrylic render is often used as a thin finishing coat because it can enhance the appearance of the underlying coat. It also works as a sealant that’s mixed with fibres to prevent cracking at the surface. As the finishing touch, the acrylic render provides colour, texture, and a long-lasting layer of protection.
Option #5 Silicone
The silicone render is also used as a finishing coat because it’s waterproof and durable. It’s believed to have the ability to clean itself because the dirt will be carried away every time it rains, thanks to the hydrophobic nature of silicone. This render is also more flexible than other materials because it accommodates movement and is resistant to cracks.
Option #6 Lime
The lime render — the most traditional material in house rendering — is more flexible and expensive than cement. Still, it’s also breathable, which means you won’t have to worry about moisture getting trapped within the wall. It already has an attractive finish; however, the render will still require regular lime wash coating to maintain the appearance.
Option #7 Monocouche
The monocouche render is applied in a single coat, uses white cement, and can come in any colour you wish. The material has the texture and flexibility of lime renders, which can help reduce cracking. Plus, the monocouche render is hard-wearing, low-maintenance, weather-resistant, and visually appealing but is more expensive than all the other materials.
How to Choose the Right Material
Choosing the right rendering for your house will require you to take other factors into account. This can include the climate you’re in, the budget you have, and the kind of finish you want to achieve. The reason for this is that each material has pros and cons that you should consider when deciding.
For instance, if you live in colder or wet regions, it might be better to go with breathable materials such as silicone and lime because they won’t be vulnerable to water damage. You also need to decide if you want to add external wall insulation, especially if you can’t place one inside the walls.
Some renders also take longer to apply because others need at least three coats, whereas others would only need one. You’ll need the weather to work with you while the rendering dries and cures to avoid any problems with the texture, colour, or finish, which means you can’t do it when it’s snowing or raining.
At the end of the day, what matters is that you’re happy with the decision you made. Every render material stated here will be able to do the job of protecting your home from the elements; the only difference is how they fare when it comes to durability and longevity.