Breezeblock walls are practical and budget-friendly, but they can be an eyesore from an aesthetic standpoint, and they aren’t very weather tight if left unfinished. So, what are you going to do about it? Let’s have a look at it together!
Covering such a wall improves its durability and helps it blend in with the surrounding buildings. To do so, there are many methods and wall ideas you can choose from, and in this tutorial, we will go over the most effective ones that will give you the look that you always wanted!
What exactly are breeze blocks, and what are they used for?
The name “breeze blocks” comes from the fact that these blocks were often used in hot climates to allow for a breeze to pass through.
Because breeze blocks aren’t typically structural, they’re often used where a garden meets a house, such as patio screens, carports, and garden walls. Both breeze and cinder block walls were commonly used for stairwells and balcony screening too.
When you are a homeowner and wish to build a house, for instance, you are going to need some concrete block walls, stone walls, brick walls, retaining walls, stone veneers, etc., so you always aim for some high-density concrete blocks. When it comes to garden walls, that is not the case as they are often made of low-density blocks, such as the breeze type.
How to cover a breezeblock wall with vinyl siding step-by-step
So, are you ready for this project? We hope you do! Here’s what you need to know:
You will need the following tools:
- 5 × 10 × 20 cm furring strips
- Measuring tape
- Circular saw
- 0.65 cm masonry drill bit
- Tin snips
- Cordless drill
- 0.65 cm concrete screws
- Vinyl starter strip
- Vinyl top strip
- 0.65 cm galvanised siding nails
- Vinyl panels
- Snap-punch tool
Step 1: Cut furring strips to match the width of the wall
They are simply treated wood boards that are water-resistant. Some stores sell pre-cut strips, but you can also request that treated pine boards be cut to your desired measurements.
To determine the length of the strips, use a measuring tape. Cut two boards that are the same width as the wall.
Step 2: Attach the boards to the top and bottom edges of the wall
The first board should be simple to install because you will place it on the very top of the wall. As for the second lower board, measure up roughly 15 cm from the bottom edge of the wall.
Make sure that the boards reach from one end of the wall to the other, and add more if necessary if yours are too short. You may also consider using chalk to mark the installation points first.
Step 3: Use screws to connect the boards
Mark the attachment sites with a pencil as needed along each of the strips. To make holes all the way through the wood, use a masonry drill bit with a diameter of 0.65 cm. Then, to hold the boards in place, insert concrete screws into the holes.
Step 4: To link the strips, use vertical boards along the wall
Cut extra strips to the same size as before. Line up these boards with the wall’s edges, using chalk to draw straight lines as needed for the installation.
Attach the boards to the breeze blocks with screws and drills. To establish a framework for the vinyl siding, apply more vertical strips every 40 cm.
To complete the furring “frame,” remember to add vertical boards around each door and window. These must be framed in order to be adequately waterproofed.
Step 5: Measure and cut the vinyl to ensure that it is equally distributed throughout the wall
Measure from the top edge of the upper furring strip to the bottom edge of the lower one with a tape measure. To account for potential overlapping, add 1.5 cm to your measurement. Then, equally cut the vinyl panels to fit across the wall’s height.
Trim the panels with a circular saw equipped with a plywood-cutting blade. To keep yourself safe while operating a saw, remember to use goggles, earmuffs, and a dust mask.
Step 6: Secure a vinyl starter strip below the bottom furring
The starting strip is a slotted trim piece that secures the vinyl to the furring board. Place it so that it extends 0.65 cm below the lower furring.
To secure the starter, use galvanised siding nails in the pre-cut slots. Get more vinyl starters if you’re working around doors and windows.
Step 7: Install vinyl panels on the wall from the bottom to the top
Place the first row of vinyl panels over the bottom of the wall. Work from one side to the other, pinning the panels using 0.65 cm galvanised siding nails put in their pre-cut fastening slots.
Start the next row when you reach the end of the wall, allowing the new panels to overhang the first by 2.5 cm.
Step 8: Look for labels on the nail slots in each panel
They contain information to help installers in properly aligning rows of panels. Remember not to hammer them in too hard because the vinyl panels are thin and can expand and shrink due to weather variations. Pinch the nails in until they’re even with the panel’s upper lip.
Step 9: To prevent water from leaking beneath the vinyl, use a top strip
Punch a hole every 40 cm over the upper furring strip with a snap-lock tool. To guide the strip onto the vinyl panels, grip it using tin snips. More galvanised siding nails will be needed to keep it in place.
How to cover a breezeblock wall with a stucco step-by-step
Ready for another cool option? This landscaping project is just getting better!
You will need the following tools:
- Misting bottle
- Concrete bonding agent
- Acrylic/Masonry paint
- Stucco mix
Step 1: Clean the wall and remove any clutter to make it as flat as possible
To remove dirt, spray the wall with a garden hose. Look for stubborn stains, damaged areas, and other problems that need to be addressed.
Use soap, trisodium phosphate, and other cleaners to remove stains. Clear all debris from damaged areas and fix them as well.
Mix mortar to fix any potential damage. Fill up the holes as much as possible to make the wall level.
Step 2: Apply a concrete bonding agent to the wall and allow an overnight dry time
The bonding agent will create a surface onto which the initial coat of stucco will stick. If you don’t use it, your finished wall cover may look patchy and uneven.
Go over the entire wall with a 7.5 cm paintbrush from top to bottom. Apply a single coating of the bonding agent to the wall.
Step 3: Make your own stucco mix in a wheelbarrow or buy one
Fill your wheelbarrow halfway with store-bought stucco mix and whisk in water until it has a paste-like consistency.
Get sand, lime, and cement if you’re making your own. To get a good DIY mix that sticks well to vertical walls, use 3 parts sand, 1 part lime, and 1 part cement. If you don’t plan on painting it, you can add a concrete pigment to colour it.
Step 4: Apply 0.65 cm scratch coat
Use a concrete sprayer to swiftly cover huge areas if you have one. Otherwise, use a flat tool like a hawk to pick up the stucco mix and then a trowel to apply it to the wall.
Apply it to the top of the wall and spread it out from left to right, repeating as necessary to complete the layer.
Don’t remove the scratch coat because it acts as a second base for the outer layer. Plus, avoid applying too much all at once.
Step 5: Scratch the stucco five to ten minutes after you apply it
Waiting a few minutes helps the coat to firm a little, ensuring that you don’t scratch the wall underneath it. Get a scarifier when you’re ready and scratch lines into the plaster by raking it horizontally across the entire wall.
By scratching it, you will be making a basis for the final layer to attach to, resulting in a more durable wall covering. It’s not necessary for the scratch marks to be completely horizontal or even.
Simply drag the tool a couple of times across the wall, and you may even get a much stronger finish if you make marks all the way down the wall. Use the edge of a trowel or another instrument if you don’t have a scarifier. Make scratches that are about 0.30 cm deep.
Step 6: Allow the stucco to dry for two days, misting it twice daily
Allow it to harden in the open air. Spray it with water from a misting bottle every morning and afternoon to keep it moist. Allowing it to dry out before it has finished curing might cause it to weaken and split.
Step 7: Apply a second stucco layer
Repeat the technique with another 0.65 cm layer to complete the wall cover. Instead of scraping it this time, create any covering you like that can fit your garden design. Once you’re done, spray it and let it dry for at least two days.
Whatever method you choose above, the end result will be a breezeblock wall with a unique aesthetic appeal to it. You will have a wall makeover in your outdoor space and say bye-bye to that ugly wall you had!