In the UK many of our homes have rendered external walls. The finish and depth of which can range from the extremely thick and heavy duty ‘rough-cast’ and ‘pebble-dash’ renders, to the thinner more advanced silicone finishes that we see now becoming more and more popular. Whether you’re a fan of exposed pointed brick work, beautiful dressed stone walls or smooth flat render, you might ask yourself – why do we render our homes in the UK?


1. The weather

While it isn’t only endemic to the UK, bad weather in the form of heavy rain and freezing cold isn’t uncommon here. This wet weather can penetrate exposed brick, block and stone work if there are weaknesses in the pointing or the materials are too porous. A spell of freezing weather can then cause this retained water to expand as it freezes, creating further damage to the surface or joints. Furthermore, water that penetrates deep enough can cause damp issues on the inside walls of our homes.

A rendered finish over a compromised wall creates a shield from bad weather; preventing water damage to the inside of our properties and maintaining the integrity of our external walls. You would be surprised to see the condition of underlying walls after we have removed older compromised renders; when the elements get in they can cause havoc!


2. Structural integrity

On many older homes, particularly those of soft red brick and black mortar construction, render can help maintain the external structure of the wall. Many properties have historically, and continue to be, constructed with cheaper building materials that are less sturdy against the elements than their more costly counter parts. This is done knowing a rendered finish is going to be applied, thus protecting the cheaper construction materials from the elements.

Wooden and even concrete lintels will degrade over time when exposed to the elements. That is why it’s important to maintain a complete render seal on your rendered wall. In modern advanced systems a mesh component is used, sandwiched as a complete over lapping layer between two coats of appropriate render; this provides further structural reinforcement. Competent and qualified repairs should be carried out on any cracks in your rendered walls.



3. A decorative finish

As well as providing a barrier to the elements renders provide an opportunity to express the character of a property. Whole walls or individual sections can be rendered in many different textures, materials and colours. Whether you like the rough textured finishes of Tyrolean, rough-cast or pebbledash; or you prefer a smoother finish like monocouche, sand and cement or silicone renders.

Monocouche finishes have the added benefit of being pre-coloured, requiring no painting. Silicone finishes are also able to be primed and lightly textured in many different colours and within days of initial application. There are plenty of options to add personality and colour to your home. Render finishes have a certain quality that can help your home stand out, blend in, or appear more aged or modern.


4. Insulation

Render’s primary role is to provide a protective and decorative finish to your home but it can also provide an insulating factor. Whilst not as effective on its own as an insulator, render’s main insulating quality comes from the prevention of cold air from penetrating through poor quality walls and from keeping moisture out.

Commonly, render is used in conjunction with external-wall insulation to achieve the best insulating factor for your property. Thin finish systems such as a complete silicone mesh system are the best for sealing and protecting the externally insulating panels. External wall insulation in conjunction with render can achieve warm homes with modern finishes.

So as you can see we render our homes for many practical and aesthetic reasons. Should you spot a crack or are in need of repairs don’t delay, contact Render Surgeon before it gets worse!


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