In the UK, rendering your home is considered a smart move. Rendering can be really beneficial for a property – but there is a minefield of information out there about it, especially if it’s your first time investigating your options. There are plenty of reasons for and against, and the different types of render.

Reasons to invest in render

If you own a property with exposed brickwork, why should you invest in rendering your walls?

  • Aesthetics – if your brickwork has taken a battering, looks tired, or just needs some attention given to it; why not try rendering? It can transform the look of any wall; it can freshen up even the most disaster looking wall and make it look modern, sleek and clean.
  • Protection – the big selling point. Render is amazing at protecting your walls; over the years, natural wear and tear can play havoc with exposed brickwork. Rendering creates an invaluable protective barrier from the elements and ensures that the brickwork underneath remains unaffected.
  • Damp – solid brick walls are incredibly liable to issues stemming from penetrating damp, this is where water seeps through the brickwork; this is the case for most exposed areas. Adding a render finish to the wall will help in stopping this from occurring, and will ensure that penetrating damp is not an issue through the brick.

Insulation and render

Until very recently, there was a simple choice: to render or not. Now there is the added question of: insulate or not. With the process of rendering, it also makes sense to insulate the external solid walls of the property at the same time.

The types of render

There are so many choices when it comes to rendering your home – this can lead to some confusion. Let’s sort through some of the options available.

Acrylic Render

This is ideal for both new builds and refurbished projects – it holds vibrant colours for longer. It is relatively cheap, which makes it a prime option if you are rendering on a budget. However, the drawback is that it doesn’t breathe; so if you want the air to penetrate to the brick and insulation underneath, acrylic isn’t the one for you.

Mineral Render

It is breathable, has a quick drying time, is incredibly durable and is highly impact resistant. Breathability has become a more common requirement for certain insulation types; this can make mineral render the preferred choice for many installations. In terms of the cost, it sits around middle of the table; which is a fairly good option for many properties.

Silicone Render

If you want top of the range, look no further than silicone or silicone silicate render. The advantages include being the easiest to apply, highly durable and breathable, it is the most flexible system on the market; which makes cracking over its lifetime less likely, and it is hydrophobic (which makes this a self-cleaning render!). The few drawbacks include not being able to apply it in cold weather, only based on the fact it takes longer to dry in colder temperature; and it is more expensive than the other types of render.

How long will the render last?

Render is highly durable – it will last for a long time. The average design life is around the 30 year mark; whereas in reality it should last even longer than this, it is definitely a long term investment on your property.

Coloured render

Render is like a chameleon – it can be basically any colour. Pigment is just mixed in with the render; the advantage of having coloured render is that the colour achieved is more durable that just simply painting the house. A painted wall will peel, crack and lose colour over time, but a coloured render will last much longer, and bring with it a better-looking finish.

Pebbledash

Bringing the 60s and 70s back, one pebble at a time. A relic of the good old days, pebbledash render is ridiculously strong. Regrettably, this means it is awkward to strip off and start again. One way around this hiccup is to insulate over the top of the pre-existing pebbledash and then render. This eliminates the cost of stripping back the old, and you get the added bonus of extra insulation; it’s a winning situation.