You may have heard the term ‘pebble dashing’ being used before. Whether this is through conversations with your builder, friends or when looking at potential homes, this form of external covering became popular in the 1930s. But over the years, it has received a bit of a bad reputation from those embracing and using the modern alternatives. We believe there is still a place for pebble dashing in contemporary property maintenance. Continue reading this article as we will seek to explain everything you need to know about pebble dashing.

Difference between Roughcast and Pebbledash?

Pebbledash and Roughcast are the forms of render in which the topcoat is roughly textured by stone fragments or pebbles. Pebbledash and Roughcast has different meanings. For pebbledash, clean material is thrown at the freshly plastered area or surface then pressed in, so the colour of the material is visible. The term pebble-dashing is the application of small stones that are seemingly stuck to render on the outside of your house or any properties. Other names used to describe the process are harling and dry-hashing.

For Roughcast, on the other hand, the material is mixed with mortar and then thrown at the area or surface, so all the material is coated with the mortar. This will produce a slightly softer texture and the surface is limewashed. It is a type of plaster that has many inclusions — including pebbles, sand, shell fragments and gravel — but the main components of the plaster are lime and cement. This type of plaster is coarse and pebbly in appearance, lending it the alternate name of pebbledash, but it is applied flat to a surface. This is usually used on external surfaces as a decorative element for your homes, and it may come in a variety of colours, based on the inclusions.

How to Pebble Dash a Wall?

  1. Mix up the lime with water, follow the manufacturer's instructions and leave it covered to slake, or hydrate within 24 hours.

  2. Mix up 1 part of the slaked lime to 1 part cement and 6 parts sand.
  3. Keep the trowel level and use its edge to create a flat and smooth layer of the base on the wall. Let the base dry for 30 minutes up to 1 hour, then rake the surface with a notched trowel to create a grooved surface to help the second coat adhere. Dry it for 24 hours.

  4. Rinse and drain your pebbles completely. Put them in a large bucket or container, you can set beneath the wall you are pebble dashing.
  5. Mix up your topcoat of 5 parts sand to 1 part slaked lime and 1 part cement. Trowel this onto the wall in a smooth and even layer.

  6. Spread the plastic sheeting below the wall. This helps catch the loose pebbles as they fall and allow you to collect them easily and reuse them until the wall is covered.
  7. Hold the bucket of pebbles below the wall and get up some pebbles with a trowel with the other hand. Throw the pebbles dash stone at the wall. Just continue throwing the pebbles to the wall until you get even coverage from top to bottom. Slowly press the pebbles into the wall with the flat of the trowel. Let it dry for 24 hours.

Benefits of Pebble Dashing

There are many reasons why pebble dashing is the best choice for your house or building. Some of the key benefits include:

  • Low maintenance – Pebble dash walls are very durable and, once applied, requires very little maintenance. This makes it the perfect choice for rented homes or families that don’t want to excessively spend out on repeated building work.
  • Highly protective – It adds another layer of quality and reliable protection to the outside of your home. This prevents liquid moisture from penetrating the area, minimising the risk of internal damage during the rainy season. Will surely improved all the water-shedding properties  
  • High impact resistance – It has high impact resistance, therefore it can withstand wear. For busy families, children can kick a ball against the wall without the risk of damaging it.
  • Visually and decorative, pleasing to the eye.

  • It will give designers and architects a wide choice of colour and textures to work with

  • Protects from the harsh condition and provides insulation

How to Clean Pebble Dash

Pebbledash is a type of stucco in which pebbles have been embedded. Usually used as a decorative surface, pebble dash has been used on outside home exteriors and walls. It can become stained and dirty from its exposure to the elements. Good and routine cleanings can keep your pebble dash looking new and neat.

Step 1. Examine the pebble dash area. If you see cracks or holes in it, do not attempt to clean them immediately Water can seep through the holes, it will cause the cracks to widen or deepen, damaging the surface below the pebble dash. Try to repair the holes before cleaning them.

Step 2. Spray the pebble dash with a hose to remove dust, buildup and dirt. 

Step 3. Fill your bucket or container with hot water. Add 1 tbsp. liquid dishwashing soap per gallon of water. If the pebble dash is extremely stained or dirty, a stucco cleaning soap can be used. Dilute the cleaner in water, following the instructions for how much soap to add per gallon of water.

Step 4. Dip a medium-sized bristle brush into the water with soap. For large areas, use a long-handed and large bristle brush. Scrub the pebble dash with the brush to remove all stains, dirt and residue.

Step 5. To remove a soap residue. Spray the pebble dash with a hose, starting from the top and working your way downward. Allow it to air-dry.

Try the durable Pebble Dash at AMAROC.

Our impressive and durable Pebble Dash exterior wall rendering finish provides natural colour tones inspired by granite, sandstone, and slate; providing a dynamic, cohesive look with traditional materials for any building project.

The finish provides excellent insulation for walls in winter and its beauty makes it impossible not to go back outside every day!