Faux stone cladding can be an excellent choice to add some flair to your home. It comes in many different looks including fieldstone and ledgestone as well as layouts designed to emulate techniques from precise masonry to looser stacking.
It is also lighter than natural stone (12 lbs per square foot) which can concrete paint reduce installation costs as well as the need for foundations and wall ties. But there are issues with its durability and longevity which should be taken into consideration.
Interior and Exterior Design Materials
Real brick and stone are much heavier and more costly to transport, cut, and install than high-density polyurethane. For this reason, faux brick and stone are often chosen over the real thing.
Faux stone is also known as manufactured or cultured stone. It is a concrete product cast in molds and painted or stained to look like different types of natural stone. It is often used for ground covering or walls in moisture-prone areas such as around pools or hot tubs. Faux stone may require sealing every 2-3 years to avoid color fade due to long-term exposure to UV rays and moisture.
Real stone veneer is quarried from the earth and split or cut from rock that has formed naturally over thousands or even millions of years, like round New England fieldstone gathered from abandoned stone walls and farms. It can have a more varied and unique design, with textures and tonal variation that cannot be recreated in synthetic materials such as dyes or cements.
Characteristics and Advantages
While both natural stone and faux stone products can produce the desired look for your project, they have different characteristics that make them better fits for certain types of projects. Real stone tends to be a great fit for outdoor spaces, especially those with a rustic feel to them. Faux stone, on the other hand, is a good choice for projects that are not in an outdoor environment.
Faux stone can be molded and cast into unique shapes and sizes to mimic the appearance of many different types of stone. It is also much lighter than natural stone and can be installed without the need for footings, foundations, or wall ties.
Since it is not a naturally formed product, it will need to be sealed regularly and may be susceptible to color fade from exposure to the sun’s UV rays and moisture from rain or pools. These issues can be minimized by the regular application of a non-film-forming, breather type masonry sealer to your cultured stone.
In the building industry, more homeowners are demanding eco-friendly materials. This has impacted many industries, including the stone manufacturing and masonry business. Many natural stone manufacturers are introducing green initiatives to their business, and there are now many options for builders and homeowners looking to go green with their home designs.
Faux stone is manufactured by mixing cement with aggregates and specific pigments to get the look of different types of stone. It can be molded into unique and detailed shapes, so it looks very similar to natural stone. It is also a less expensive and more durable option than real stone.
If you plan on using manufactured stone in moisture-prone areas like near pools and hot tubs, be sure to treat it with a silane-based, non-film-forming, breather type masonry sealer. Otherwise, it can be susceptible to a problem called efflorescence, where water leaches out of the stones and creates an ugly deposit on the surface of your wall.
Design Style and Material Selection
A home remodeling project is a significant investment in time and money. Your materials should be chosen carefully to ensure that your building structure will last architecturally and aesthetically. Natural stone is a superior choice over faux stone in this regard because it requires little maintenance and is durable against harsh climate conditions.
Faux stone is more porous than natural stone and therefore prone to moisture damage. This can lead to a problem called efflorescence, which is when lime from inside the stone gets transferred through to the exterior. This creates an ugly deposit that looks like a water stain on the surface.
Faux stone also fades in direct sunlight over a period of many seasons. The tints used in the stones are prone to fading as well, and it’s not easy to change them once they fade. This is why we recommend selecting URBANCONCRETE for any project in a sunny environment or for use around a pool or hot tub.