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EIFS Removal

What is EIFS?

EIFS is an acronym standing for Exterior Insulation and Finish System. It is also known as synthetic stucco because it resembles the look and feel of conventional cement stucco yet incorporates an acrylic or synthetic finish coat.

EIFS is an exterior cladding for commercial and residential properties. It is comprised of an insulation board, glass fiber reinforcing mesh, base coat and an acrylic finish (see picture below).

EIFS Components

Problems with EIFS:

The EIFS industry gained national exposure in 1995 as numerous houses clad with this system began to show severe signs of water infiltration, rotting wood and mold (see picture 5). Class action lawsuits were filed against the manufacturers of EIFS (Article 1 & Article 2). Insurance companies such as Maryland Casualty stated they would no longer issue builder's liability insurance to EIFS clad homes. In March of 1999 Dateline NBC did a segment entitled Is Your Home Crumbling Around You? All fingers were pointing toward EIFS and its inability to properly manage water infiltration. This same sentiment is still lingering today.

Rotting Wood

5. Rotting Wood with Possible Mold Growth

Upon closer examination it was found that the EIFS cladding provided an exceptional building envelope. Properly installed EIFS is an aesthetically pleasing, long-lasting siding which performs well in any environment. However, if water infiltrates the system through such avenues as faulty windows (see picture 6), improper flashings (see picture 7), below grade application (see picture 8), or faulty workmanship (see picture 9), the water will get trapped between the wood sheathing and the EIFS system. This system, which is so effective at keeping water out of the building now traps the water inside the building envelope. The result is rotting wood, insect infestation, mold and other damage caused by the trapped water.

Faulty Windows

6. Faulty Windows

Improper Flashings

7. Improper Flashings

Below Grade Applications

8. Below Grade Applications

Faulty Workmanship

9. Faulty Workmanship

It was for this reason that in October of 1998 EIMA (EIFS Industry Members Association) recommended that all EIFS installed on one and two family residential dwellings receive a "drainage" or "water-managed" application. Simply put, the foam could no longer be attached directly to the wood sheathing but must incorporate a building wrap over the wood with proper flashings and terminations to allow trapped water to escape the EIFS cladding.

What does this mean for you?

Don't panic if your home is clad with EIFS. You can easily do research yourself or check some of the following sites before hiring a contractor. EIFS web-sites www.njeifs.com , www.stuccolaw.com , www.stuccoguru.com and some EIFS articles (Ripping Off the EIFS by Exterior Design Institute;
EIFS Facts by Douglas Pencille, and Behind Some Stucco-like Walls, Problems by John Sullivan NY Times.)

It is important to determine if your EIFS was installed properly and whether it is direct applied or the water-managed system.

We recommend you do the following:

1. Call or e-mail us today. Our staff is trained to determine the best course of action. We have a certified EIFS Inspector on staff and have been working with EIFS systems since 1983.

2. Hire a certified EIFS Inspector to do a full inspection of your home. Although we are not currently doing EIFS inspections, we can provide a list of reputable inspectors.

3. If it has been determined that you have a water-managed system on your house, we can repair the EIFS and bring it to industry standards.

4. If it is determined that you have a direct applied system to your house, we can provide a detailed estimate to remove the EIFS and install a traditional cement stucco system or water-managed EIFS.

Removal and replacement of your EIFS System:

CS Stucco is uniquely qualified to remove the existing EIFS and replace it with a new water-managed system. We have been in the plastering business since 1983 and are fully capable of coordinating the different trades. We have successfully completed hundreds of projects and can provide referrals from home owners and builders. Our company was incorporated in 1987 and we have not changed our name since. This is a good indication that we not only provide an exceptional job but are willing to stand behind our workmanship. Please see our testimonials.

These removals require a degree of electrical, sheathing, landscaping, windows, flashing and roofing work. We will coordinate these trades so you don’t have to. The bottom line is that upon completion you can be assured that the building envelope will function properly. A warranty will be issued upon completion along with digital pictures of the work in progress.

Again - don't panic! CS Stucco will come along side you and guide you through the process. Our experience, consultation, and detailed written proposal are free of charge. Allow us to prove that our slogan of Craftsmanship with Integrity since 1987 is not just words but defines who we are.

Please see below a few before, during and after pictures of EIFS homes that were replaced with a new stucco/ stone system.



During EIFS Removal

During EIFS Removal

After Installation of Stucco

After Installation of Stucco



During EIFS Removal

During EIFS Removal

After Installation of Stucco

After Installation of Stucco



During EIFS Removal

During EIFS Removal

After Installation of Stucco

After Installation of Stucco

History of EIFS

EIFS was first introduced to the housing market in Europe during the 1950's. It made its way to the United States in the 1960's and was officially launched by Dryvit Corp. Rhode Island, in 1969.

Due to its design flexibility, price and ease of application, EIFS became a mainstream building cladding by the 1980's. It was installed throughout North America on commercial buildings (see pictures 2), shopping centers (see picture 3), and residences (see picture 4) of all sizes.


2. EIFS on Commercial Building

Commercial Strip Mall

3. EIFS on Strip Mall


4. EIFS on Residence

By the early 1990's, approximately 200 million square foot of EIFS was installed in the U.S.A.. The EIFS industry reached its peak in the mid 1990's with approximately 6% of new houses receiving EIFS. Please see link for a more detailed timeline by US Inspect.

CS Stucco & Plaster - 105 Industrial East, Clifton, NJ 07012, Phone: (973) 423-0770
NJ Home Improvement Contractor # 13VH00033800
Rockland County Home Improvement Contractor # H-09632-08-20-38
Westchester County Home Improvement Contractor # WC-13981-H03
Connecticut Home Improvement Contractor #HIC.0612134
EPA Lead-Safe Certification # NAT-42495-1