Thin Brick Offers EIFS Relief

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While the moisture and infestation problems associated with exterior insulation and finishing systems (EIFS) are spotty, they are well-publicized and serious enough to prompt a burgeoning market for EIFS retrofit systems

April 03, 2000
The thin brick system from Endicott Tile is a viable EIFS replacement and blends well with neighboring houses of real brick.

 

While the moisture and infestation problems associated with exterior insulation and finishing systems (EIFS) are spotty, they are well-publicized and serious enough to prompt a burgeoning market for EIFS retrofit systems.

In coastal Virginia (one area with numerous EIFS-related problems), contractors have found that thin-brick panel systems are easy to get despite the recent brick shortage, contractor-friendly and meet customer expectations.

"For retrofitting, thin brick is the perfect system because you don’t have to pour any footings. It screws directly to the framing," says Michael Costello, owner of Drywall Plus in Richmond, Va., an EIFS replacement contractor. Thin brick’s ease of installation is a labor, time and cost saver for contractors, and offers a wide variety of colors and styles to blend with various neighborhood homes.

Costello used a low-maintenance brick panel system from Endicott Tile that features a built-in drainage system. With a moisture barrier installed behind the panels, any moisture that comes through the brick or mortar joints easily escapes through weep holes at the bottom.

The system is especially applicable to retrofits because of the light weight (six pounds per square foot when complete) and ease of application around existing windows.

Costello says the cost of replacing EIFS with thin brick is approximately $9 to $11 per square foot installed including material. This price varies depending upon the type of brick style chosen and if any special shapes are needed.

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