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Stone Veneers: Why Go Natural?

by Kuhrich on Thursday, July 24, 2014

You have the luxury of using a variety of different materials for the exterior of your home. Of course, while there are certainly many materials you could use, you would only want to use one, perhaps two, in particular; otherwise you run the risk of creating an unattractive hodgepodge of exterior materials and patterns, which would look unattractive to just about any eye. No, whether it is vinyl, brick, wood, or stone, you want to use something high quality and something that you will be comfortable seeing across most of your home’s exterior. Stone veneers, in fact, are becoming a great way to efficiently use stone veneers across the entirety of your home.

What is a Stone Veneer?

What is a stone veneer? It’s made of stone, of course, that can be either natural or manufactured; there are benefits to both, and your choice will depend on your own aesthetic needs as well as your budget requirements. With natural stone veneers, the stone is cut to a consistent thickness and weight to be distributed across the entirety of the veneer; this makes it so that the veneer is structurally sound, without any excessive weight placed on any part of the veneer.

Stone veneers can be completely fabricated as well. By pouring a mix of lightweight concrete into rubber forms, manufacturers are able to mix and match the styles of the forms with a coloring process to make the veneers look like actual, natural stone. These veneers are then attached to your home’s exterior using a special mortar or composite material.

The Strength of Stone

While there are of course disadvantages and advantages, it is important to keep in mind that manufactured stone veneers simply aren’t as strong as natural stone veneers. They aren’t real stone, stone that has been tested by hundreds if not thousands of years of pressure before it was mined and put into your veneer. It’s easy for a piece to break, and when that happens, it will have to be replaced – and because the replacement stone won’t be from the same “batch” as the rest, it will look incredibly out of place. As you can imagine, natural stone doesn’t have that problem – stones don’t look “out of place,” they’re just more stones among stone.

These days, stone veneers are used for a variety of different custom homes and styles, from the rustic to the modern to the suburban to even the urban. No place is too strange for the stone veneer, as homeowners like the solid, natural look that a stone veneer offers to a home. Plus, it’s something you don’t have to worry about quite as much as vinyl or wood; after all, it’s stone!

+Ken Uhrich is lead Estimator and Purchaser at Custom Home Group, a Design/Build company, located in Lancaster County, PA. You can follow Ken on Twitter: @kuhrich Or visit his company website: www.customhomegroup.com