Exposed Lath on Stone Veneer

I don’t have much experience with stone veneer. At one area (hard to see in pic) I can see the metal lath between the stone. Doesn’t look like mortar was installed all the way over it. Is this a concern? Also an unfinished area by the AC board was loose.

Is it faux stone or real? Some manufacturers of faux stone have very specific installation instructions that state not to grout between each piece.
As far as this goes:

Write it up as in need of repair…

Remember the stone is a decorative layer, the primary purpose of which is to shield the water layer from physical and UV damage and the brunt of weather.

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I’m not sure if it was real or not. I just know I saw some bits of the metal lath at one point and wasn’t sure it that was just cosmetic or not. I don’t see this much. Concrete block behind. I don’t think there was any wood based on the height of the basement and garage. I think it terminated around the sill plate/band joist area and the vinyl siding was installed from there up. But very limited as almost everything was finished inside.

You sure about that?

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That is messed up.
639136_b8d103e2e0194d1db0e9b657328cb984.pdf (


I dont think so… Window and door look like wood frame wall. Plus, if it has WRB and lathe, its probably not block.


Dry stack or groutless is a common technique for self supporting adhered stone.

Dry Stacked Applications
The stones should fit tightly against each other, however due to the unique shape of each stone, some gaps between stones may occur. It is essential that the entire back of each stone be encapsulated with mortar to ensure a good bond. Dry stacked applications are not recommended where freeze/thaw is common

Above in bold is my concern.


Agree with Brian.

And, where are you located?

My bold:


Here’s one I recently did. I want to see that mortar bed! Especially over walkways…they love to fall off. Also, notice the missing flashing detail.

I’m in West Virginia border southern Ohio and Kentucky. We are a middle state and experience a good amount of snow and freezing weather in winter. Very humid summers.

The few times I have seen this type of veneer it’s never had that outer layer mortar bed.

The garage was concrete block all the way to the ceiling. I know because there were holes in the drywall at top. I suppose I can’t know for sure what’s behind the wall all the way.

The window/door area is directly right of the garage and is a finished basement. Concrete block is very common in this area and because we have tons of hills it’s pretty common to have a basement where part of it is underground and the other part comes out downhill the slope as we see in this picture. This arrangement is very common to find bare concrete block with no siding up until the sill plate/band joist on the 2nd floor starts.

That being said, this siding was installed a while back as a big upgrade to the home which was originally built in the 90s, all per Zillows and owners.

There may well be sheathing and/or wood frame. But I know that at least the garage section (to the left of the picture with windows and doors) was block 100%. I strongly suspect concrete block elsewhere.

Then the below pertains to your area, eh? :+1:

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A new way to put lipstick on a pig in 21st century :slight_smile:

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See it everywhere around here anymore. Masons typically don’t put a scratch coat on before adhering the stone anymore. They put a thick layer of mortar on each one and squish it into mesh and call it done.

Watched a crew do a warranty job on a new house the other day, and they ripped of a 6’x10’ area on the side of a home in a matter of minutes with an electric chisel, and had all new stone in place within an hour. When I asked the guys what happened, they said the work was done in the winter and the mortar froze when it was still wet/green. As a result, stones were literally just popping off.


That depends on the substrate. Are you saying they do this with metal lath?

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That’s what meant Simon. I was also referring to local practices. Contractors around here cut corners like crazy.

Brian is on top of it. Synthetic stone used in a dry stack application should not be used when exposed to rain, especially in areas subjected to freezing temperatures. Water will work its way behind the stone and when it freezes individual stones will debond and fall off while some will remain in place. I always look between the joints with a flashlight. I have seen metal lath attached to plywood without a moisture barrier.