While stone veneer siding is an excellent and attractive option for the exterior of any home or building, and generally quite easy to maintain, this type of siding can nonetheless develop structural problems that require repair work. Stone veneer siding consists of thin stone slabs made from concrete and other materials or found naturally, which are attached to a mortar layer that covers the wall or siding area and then solidified in place with a grout mixture. If any of the components of the siding become damaged or require replacement, you'll need to fix any number of these elements. Read on for a brief guide on how to make the simple repairs that most people find necessary to maintain their stone veneer siding.
Step 1 - Fix Minor Cracks
Before you begin, look for minor cracks in the stone veneer siding. These are small cracks and scratches that might harm the appearance of the siding but won't otherwise lead to structural damage, at least not yet. These cracks and blemishes are the easiest parts of the system to fix. First, mix up your stone putty according to the instructions and to match up with the color of the stone. Next, apply the putty with a putty knife to the cracked area, ensuring that it is as smooth as possible. After the putty has dried, use sandpaper to carefully sand it down to the same level as the stone around it.
Step 2 - Replace Stones
If a stone is dislodged or if a major chunk of the wall is broken, you'll need to replace that area. Mix up a small amount of the concrete mixture. Carefully remove the rest of the stone that remains in the area, as it's easiest to start laying stones from scratch. Using your wheelbarrow and buckets to mix the concrete, then apply the mortar to the exposed area on the siding in a thin layer of about 1/8 inch. Before the mortar can set, fit replacement stones into the area. You'll need to allow these to dry and then fill up the spaces in between with grout mixture.
Step 3 - Protect Against Exposure and Weather Damage
You may find that extended exposure to the sun, rain, and other elements has caused damages to your stone veneer wall. If this is the case, a good coat of stone sealant can oftentimes help to preserve the integrity of the siding. Stone sealants can be found in many different home improvement stores. Look for weaker spots of the wall, or simply apply a stone sealant to all of the wall joints in order to protect them from further damage. This is a good preventative measure as you enter into the winter anyway, as it will help to ensure that your stone veneer siding doesn't sustain any damage.