If you're looking for a way to give your home the look of stone without the cost of installing a full stone exterior, consider investing in stone facing for your siding instead. Stone facing resembles real stone, but is a fraction of the weight and the price. Here are some tips to help you install stone face siding on your home so you can enjoy the dimension and texture of the new surface with the satisfaction that you got the job done on your own.
Look at the Big Picture
Start by sorting out all of your siding pieces in a trial layout. This gives you the chance to see what panels are going to fit well together so that you can choose which ones will go where. Looking at them all at once puts the rock patterns into perspective and makes it easier to envision the final product.
Building a Water Barrier
After you have determined which panels are going to fit in each space, you can start preparing the walls. With the old siding removed, install a waterproof barrier to protect your home from water damage or moisture seeping behind the siding. You can choose a membrane that needs to be stapled in place, or you can opt for a self-adhesive style.
Creating Some Structural Support
After you secure the moisture barrier, it's time to give the mortar something to hold on to. A layer of wire mesh will add structural stability and provide an anchor for the mortar to adhere to. This is essential, because the mortar needs to be secure for the siding to stay put. Staple the mesh in place using construction staples so that you can be sure that it will stay put.
Applying the Stone Face Siding
Spread an even layer of mortar across the surface of the wire mesh. Then, spread a thin layer of mortar on the back of each stone face siding panel before you put it in place. Once you secure the panel onto the house, apply a small amount of grout along the edges with a grout bag so that you create a mortar barrier between the panels. This keeps any moisture from seeping in between and behind your stone siding panels.
When you're installing these stone siding panels, you can also explore some additional decorative options.
Spotlighting Architectural Designs
If your home has a unique or unusual architectural design such as a gable roof, adding stone face siding will draw attention to it and add an attractive, natural accent. You can also create a contrast of color by choosing different tones or complimentary colors for your home. You'll see a nice balance of color by adding light gray stone face siding next to charcoal trim or something similar.
Use Mixed Stones
When you have chosen to cover the whole exterior of the house with stone face siding, you might want to break things up by choosing a variety of stones. Consider putting one type of stone on the front and rear walls while you use a different type of stone on the opposing two walls.
Pair light stones with some darker, deeper colors like slate to make an elegant appearance that will make your siding unique.
Highlight the Entry
If you want your front door to be the focal point of your house, consider choosing stone face siding around both sides of the entrance to create a focus in the center. Choose a color that will complement the door and surrounding trim so that it will look cohesive.
With stone face siding, you'll have the look of natural stone without the worry of excess weight causing structural strain on your house. With the tips presented here, you can install new stone face siding on your home and even include some decorative finishes.