Installation of cultured or any other cast stone product is possible for a DIY as long as you have plenty of patience and follow the instructions of the various manufacturers of the faux stone product.
While it may be possible to do your own installation, we have found through over 20 years experience that there are many caveats,mistakes and pitfalls that people make when installing. If you want to do your installation, but need advice, feel free to contact us, we would be happy to give you some advice to help you get started.
Top 3 mistakes people when installing faux stone:
1) Poorly Mixed Mortar
When it comes to mixing mortar you can check with our post “mixing concrete and grout mistakes” to get some ideas of the proper mixing techniques of masonry. The last thing you want to do is spend all that money on stone and have it not stay on the wall. I have seen the results of a poorly mixed batch and the end results. We end up getting a call to come in and “fix it”. Often if the underlying scratch coat and applied stone is really rough we have to take everything off and start from scratch.
2) Applying Stone In The Wrong Temperature
I’m sure you have seen a few commercial jobs around where it is evident that some of the stones are missing from the wall.
This is usually the result of either a rushed job or the stone being applied at the incorrect temperature.
It was applied in conditions that were either too cold or too hot. If it is too cold then the mortar does not bond correctly and if conditions are too hot then the mortar will dry too quickly also resulting in a weak bond.
3) Poorly Applied Scratch Coat
The scratch coat provides the foundation from which to work from when installing manufactured stone. Just like any other foundation if it is not done correctly the rest of the job will suffer.
It is very important that the wire lathe is properly fixed to the frame work of the house or that the block work being covered is in the right condition to take mortar. If the block work condition is poor (dirty, painted, disintegrating, etc) than it doesn’t matter how good you mixed your mortar it will not adhere properly and you will not be happy with the end result. It is also true for an improperly installed lathe substrate.
The Cultured Stoners are experts at installing manufactured stone having done so for over 20 years and always do the job according to manufacturers specs.
In fact we guarantee that our work meets or exceeds the specifications of manufacturers installation requirements.