PinnacleRecently while performing a home inspection in Winnetka we uncovered minor cracks in the stucco exterior that did not look to be an issue for the siding system to the eye.  The cracks on this newer built home in Winnetka most likely were caused by missing control  joints that are installed the stucco system to assure that if the rigid wall stucco system requires movement the stucco will not crack and cause costly repairs to be required.   The missing control joints on the stucco system was just the beginning of the issues on the stucco wall system that were causing cracks to develop in the finish coat of the stucco.  The stucco system also requires that all connections to the wall system are sealed to assure that water entry does not occur and cause additional cracks to develop in the future.  The stucco system has missing flashing systems that are required to be installed on the top areas of the windows and door trim to prevent wood rot on the window and door trim from occurring that can lead to water entry in the walls system of the Winnetka home inspection.  wood rot on the trim of windows and doors can allow water entry in the stucco wall system and can develop into shifting of the stucco system in the long term of the homes wall system.   The next item all home inspectors should look for is that the stucco wall system has an air gap.  An air gap is an area where there is a separation of the stucco to the ground, roofing system or any other system that can allow water to collect and cause damage to occur on the stucco system in the future.


As you can see the word “water” is used very commonly in this blog article because water entry in any wall system can cause issues with mold or mildew that can be very costly to repair if water has occurred.  The property that was part of the Winnetka home inspection did have issues with moisture entry and did require a further inspection methods.    Further stucco inspection methods may be required.  Permission from sellers of the home may be required because these tests are invasive type tests that can damage the siding and should not be performed on any home during a home inspection without the explicit permission of the sellers or the seller’s agent in writing.


If you are a home owner or a home buyer that has further questions about stucco wall systems and how we inspect them please contact us @ or 847-251-1186.

Thanks for stopping by-  The Thermal Home Inspector

Jim Kolke