Part of getting a window replacement done is about upgrading the look of your home. Besides providing comfort and warmth, new windows are also supposed to make your home look more modern and hopefully make you happy by looking at and through them.

But the visual appeal of your replacement can be all but ruined if the window doesn’t look like it connects seamlessly with the wall structure around it. Modern windows usually have aluminum capping or a vinyl brickmould that acts as a visual connector between the window and the wall. But regardless of the exterior finish on your new windows, what matters more, is preserving the exterior finish on your walls and making it look neat once your windows installed.

The latter part is especially challenging with fine wall finishes. As you guessed, we’re going to talk about stucco. Preserving a stucco finish greatly depends on the kind of windows you already have installed. Older aluminum windows usually have a nailing fin that is hidden underneath the stucco. In order to remove these windows properly, it is often necessary to break the stucco off a couple of inches in order to expose the fasteners. It isn’t an issue with wood windows, because those are fastened directly to the studs on either side, and the envelope can be preserved.

Remember, it is never a good idea to cut the stucco. Stucco is usually applied on top of black construction paper that keeps the insides of your wall dry. Cutting stucco can damage this paper and leave the structure vulnerable to moisture.

A replacement window with a stucco patch

What can be done about broken stucco?

There is no single solution for stucco breakage around the windows. Of course, the best thing to do would be to redo your stucco after the windows have been installed. But because that is a project that can cost several thousand dollars, homeowners and window installers are often left looking for cheaper options. Unfortunately, these cheaper solutions often mean a less than perfect look for the exterior of your home.

Read more: Replacement Windows and Broken Stucco

One thing that is possible to do is patch the stucco. While this method can help hide  the exposed black paper, it can be an eyesore visually. It is not easy to match the color between existing and new stucco, so you will end up with patches around your windows.

stucco patch 1
Aluminum windows have a nail fin that requires stucco to be removed for the window to be taken out.

Consider the nature of your exterior finish, the kind of windows you have, how a window replacement will affect the look of your finish. If you are having windows done as part of bigger renovations, consider the possibility of redoing your exterior finish as well. If you are committed to taking that step, make sure that the windows are replaced before any stucco is redone on the outside.

Learn everything you need to know about replacement windows:
Find out how much new windows should cost
See our full line of replacement window styles
Find out about Ecoline Windows warranty and post-installation service

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