What type of render should I choose for my home?
So you want to render or externally insulate your home? There are so many types of render out there it can be a bit confusing. Let’s take you through some of the options available to you:
Acrylic is a relatively cheap render, which makes it a good option if you are on a budget. It also holds vibrant colours for longer, great for instance if you want a nice brick-red render. The disadvantage is that it does not breathe, so if you want air to get to the bricks and insulation underneath, acrylic is not going to work for you.
Mineral render is breathable, has a quick drying time, is highly impact resistant, and very durable. It falls somewhere in the middle in terms of price, so it a is a good option for many properties. Breathability is obviously very important for some insulation systems, so that can make mineral the preferred option for many of these installs.
Silicone or silicone silicate render is a top of the range system that has a number of fantastic advantages. It is the easiest system to apply, it is hydrophobic (which makes it a self-cleaning render), and it is the most flexible system on the market, making cracking over its lifetime less likely. It is highly durable and breathable as well, so there is very little to say against silicone render. The few drawbacks are that you cannot apply it in cold weather as it takes a while to dry in colder conditions. It is also more expensive than the other types of render – you get what you pay for, as they say!
How long will render last?
Render will last a long time – the design life is around 30 years, and our partners Be Constructive will guarantee your render for 25 years. In reality, it should last even longer. There are plenty of rendered properties around the UK that have not needed work for 50 years or more. It really is a long term investment on your property.
Render can be pretty much any colour you like – the pigment is just mixed in with the render. The advantage of doing this is that the colour is much more durable than simply painting the house. A painted wall will peel and lose colour over time, but coloured render will last much longer and provide a much better-looking finish.
If there is one relic of the 60s and 70s that some people really hate with a passion it is pebbledash. The great thing about pebbledash render is that it is unbelievably strong. Unfortunately, that also means it is really tricky to strip it off and start again. One way of getting around this is to insulate over the top and then render – this is a great way to avoid the costly exercise of stripping the pebbledash, and you get a great layer of insulation at the same time.
How much does it cost?
Rendering is not a cheap exercise. It will involve scaffolding if you have a two storey or higher wall. If you have existing render it will need stripping, plus it is a fairly labour-intensive job. A typical cost might be £60 per square meter to apply, with an additional cost for stripping render. When you see the cost of external wall insulation at £100 per square meter, it really does make sense to insulate at the same time as render.