Three-coat stucco is the most common exterior cladding here in Southern California; properly installed, it’s tough, durable, and attractive. But it’s not waterproof. No matter how skilled the plasterer is, rain will get behind stucco.My inspection business investigates moisture problems for several large builders in the region. Not a week goes by that we aren’t water-testing a stucco installation, typically looking for a suspected window leak. What we’ve learned is that the windows themselves are actually fairly weatherproof; more often than not, it’s the building paper and the flashing around the window that leak.Get the Drainage Plane RightOnce you accept...

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