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Pebble Dashing Repair

People have had the exterior walls of their home rendered for some considerable time, either to protect the substrata or to improve the look of a building and hide surface imperfections. Pebble dashing is a form of rendering that involves throwing smooth pebbles at the final coat of render while it is still wet. Pebble dashing has been popular in the UK since the nineteen twenties and although it went out of fashion for a while, there are still buildings that benefit from this type of render and people who like the finish. Pebble dashing certainly offers protection against weathering and it is moisture resistant so can help to prevent the build up of damp in the substrata.

Problems with Pebble Dash

One of the problems with pebble dash renders is that over time pebbles can fall off and bare patches appear on the render. While it is not a difficult job to undertake pebble dashing repair on a couple of patches where the pebbles have come loose, the new patches will look different from the rest of the wall because it is virtually impossible to obtain the colour of the remaining, weather worn pebbles. It may be possible to collect the pebbles that come loose and mix them in with the new ones in the pebble dashing repair to provide some sort of contrast.

Undertaking Pebble Dashing Repair

Most pebble dashing is done on top of a lime render and before you start the job you will need to thoroughly soak the lime, the amount you need will depend on the size of the area that needs the pebble dashing repair. You will need to leave the lime to soak for at least 24 hours away from the air or it will dry out. You will need to put some plastic sheeting just below the area that needs repairing and pull off any pebbles around the patch. You need to tap the area with a hammer to see if there is a hollow sound, if so you will need to take any pebbles or shingle off of that area. Once you have done this you can apply the base coat, nowadays it is possible to get premixed renders and this may be more convenient than sorting out the various proportions of sand to cement and lime for. Put the base coat on with a trowel and make sure the area is smooth after an hour scratch the base coat with something pointed then leave it to dry further for a day.

The Pebbles in Pebble Dash

The next step in pebble dashing repair is to rinse the pebbles that you are going to use and leave them to drain. Mix the top coat of render, which needs to be softer than the base coat and trowel or brush it over an area that you can cover in 20 minutes. You will need a small shovel to pick up the pebbles and throw them onto the render then push in place with the trowel. If you have more than one area that needs pebble dashing repair then you will need to repeat the above steps each time.

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