Has the outside of your home seen better days? Or you might have just moved into a new property which needs some work. To keep your costs down, you may have decided to take on the job of rendering the exterior walls yourself. This article aims to give you a good starting point with some essential information about the what’s, why’s and how’s of rendering.
Remember It’s a Skill
Before setting out on your rendering journey, it’s essential to bear in mind that there’s a good reason why plasterers and rendering specialists get paid for the job they do. Rendering is a skill learnt over many years, and tradespeople are continually improving their art and improving as their experience increases. That’s not to say that with the correct tools and the right information, you can’t do a perfectly adequate job, but it just won’t be of the same standard.
Get The Right Equipment
For any work job, it’s always essential to get the proper tools for the job at hand. If you have no intentions of doing any rendering again, you will want to ensure you have quality tools for the job. You can buy these, which can be expensive, but you can sell them afterwards or consider renting the tools you need. The critical rendering tools to use are as follows:
- Rendering trowel – can be stainless steel or plastic.
- Hawk – holds the wet render.
- Scratcher – to scratch the under or scratch coat (1st layer).
- Straight edge – used to smooth the outer or topcoat (2nd layer).
- Mixer – Either a rendering machine or paddle attachment for a hand drill
- Mixing buckets – proper plaster mixing buckets are recommended.
- Urethane float – used in finishing the topcoat.
All the tools on this list are essential to the different parts of the process, and you really can’t give any of them a miss.
The Ingredients of Render
Having equipped yourself with the correct tools, it’s then a case of making sure your render contains all the right components. You need to make sure it is waterproof and that you get the finish you have in mind. The correct materials required for a good render mix are:
- Plastering sand – this is a must; no other sand is acceptable.
- Water proofers
- Your chosen render mixes.
- Hydrogenated Lime
These different components are all you require for the first scratch coat and the second topcoat.
The Rendering Process
In this short article, we will not go through the step-by-step process of rendering as it is quite a lot of information. Take some time before starting work to read many of the helpful how-to guides available online. Outline the steps of the rendering successfully so you know what the basic outline of the job is. They are as follows:
- Apply the first coat of render.
- Scratch the first coat.
- Wait a day for the scratch coat to dry.
- Apply the topcoat of render.
- Float it when it’s touch dry.
- Sponge finish shortly after floating.
That is the basic summary of what you need to do when rendering a wall. Look into each part of the process, including mixing the render, and you should be well equipped to get started.
I hope this short piece has given you a good starting point when you’re thinking of doing some rendering, good luck!