Does anyone have experience maintaining or repairing "Permastone" siding?
This is my new house:
It was built in '49 as the personal home of a residential building contractor, and my wife and I are the 2nd owners. It has many unique features and an efficient use of space; the storage space in this house is mind-blowing! Also, there is a 28' x 56' shop in the back yard with its own electrical service and wood stove. We are very fortunate to have found this place.
My question is about the siding. I've heard it referred to as "Permastone," but I know faux-stone such as this was marketed under many different names. From what I can tell, this is the variety which was comprised of individual pieces which were cast on-site and then mortared together on to the walls. Up close, the material of the "stones" looks like concrete.
I'm looking towards the future and wondering how to keep this stuff in good shape. It's in pretty good condition now, but there are some fine cracks traveling away from the corners of some of the windows so I am worried about water finding it's way in there, freezing, and eventually popping this stuff off of the walls. What do you think is the best way to combat this? Do any of you guys have practical experience with this stuff? It seems to be one of those lost-art type of things.
*edit* Sorry, I forgot to put "OT" in the subject.
As with any siding, there will be a moisture barrier below the facade.
Small cracks in morter joints are to be expected with a semi-solid surface that large.
My Father owned a PermaStone franchise in the early 70’s… I worked there a bit before going off to school.
I’m familiar with the process the PermaStone was applied with. You are correct in wanting to seal the cracks as best as possible. The water penetration can rust the underlying wire mesh that the “stone” is attached to causing it to fall away. In later years PermaStone was a precast product but applied in a similar fashion.
Best bet is to mortar the cracks… being careful to be neat and to test and color match as best as possible. A masonry sealer sprayed over the entire surface will go a long way for longevity…but as it already has 60+ years on it speaks well for the product.
You may want to use the Thin-Set material which is used for laying ceramic tile. It has an acrylic bonding agent which adheres quite well. You should be able to color it also. The acrylic admixture is available for adding to regular concrete or mortar mixes as well.
I have used some of the admixture when bonding new concrete to old.
There are many polyurethane masonry sealer/caulks on the market. Some are "sanded" to look like mortar and come in many shades. Some of the best I've found are these:
Vulkem® 116 - Tremco Commercial Sealants & Waterproofing
You can also find similar products at home stores like Home Depot and Lowes but usually not all shades and colors.