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Basic Cement Render vs Render Covered with an RSA Acrylic Texture
While cement render is an attractive, modern coating for any residential or commercial building, all cement renders are prone to cracking and white marks or stains called efflorescence (the white marks caused by lime seeping through the cement).
To overcome this and to prolong the ‘attractive look’ and life of the render, it is often overcoated with a contemporary, flexible, acrylic texture which ultimately creates a better looking finish, protects the render and most importantly, minimises unsightly cracking.
Why do basic cement render finishes crack?
Whether it’s a site mixed cement render or a pre-packaged cement render, all cement renders will develop surface cracks over time – an outcome of all cement based finishes once they harden, cure and are exposed to normal expansion and contraction elements from daily fluctuations in temperature.
The initial look of cement render with a painted sponge finish is similar to the very popular RSA Finecoat finish Acrylic Texture, but without the durability and lifespan.
Will an acrylic render minimise cracking?
While an acrylic render has acrylic added to assist with application and curing only, it will not provide the flexibility needed to minise cracks or provide the protection against water, salt and other weather conditions, that an RSA Acrylic Texture (which is 100% acrylic) will.
Why paint alone won’t completely protect the render and cover cracks?
While a textured paint finish will significantly improve the look of your render, even the thickest paints on the market today are not formulated to withstand the stresses caused by thermal expansion and contraction of cement based rigid substrates. If there are cracks in your render, then the paint film over this render will eventually crack and become an entry point for water, salt and atmospheric attack.
The above photos show cracking and efflorescence staining on a basic cement rendered finish after only one year. The render was simply painted with conventional paint, instead of it being covered with an acrylic texture and then subsequently painted with a suitable paint.