As with any cladding, prevention of water infiltration into and behind it is important for long term durability. Over the last decade, or so, several advancements to EIFS have been made. One of the most important is a drainage cavity that is location behind the foam insulation. Another is a supplemental component called a WRB, or Water-Resistive Barrier. This component provides additional moisture protection to the structure and is applied directly onto the supporting substrate.
These advances into “NEW” EIFS, address the issues that arose in the late 1990’s when some homes that were covered with the cladding suffered damage from water intrusion. Investigation into the damage showed that water was not infiltrating through the EIFS though, but was rather infiltrating through leaky windows or poorly constructed details. Other claddings, such as brick, stone, wood and vinyl siding, and conventional stucco, showed similar damage when installed with similar leaky windows and poor construction detailing.
EIFS today are one of the most tested and well researched claddings in the construction industry. Research, conducted by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and supported by the Department of Energy, has validated that EIFS are the “best performing cladding” in relation to thermal and moisture control when compared to brick, stucco, and cementitious fiberboard siding.
The proof is here; “NEW” EIFS is composed of the tools to address any moisture control issues, that you’ve come across.