There are some 200 species of woodpeckers around the world and at least 16 of these can be found in North America, not including four types of sapsuckers, Northern Flickers and the Gilded Flicker.
These birds have beaks that are like chisels, allowing them to bore holes into trees in order to locate food, signal to other birds, and nest. Their thick skulls and powerful neck muscles help them deliver blows to trees and other surfaces without damaging their bodies
Unfortunately, these birds can find their way into areas inhabited by humans and our homes and office buildings can become damaged as the woodpeckers and flickers bore holes into siding and EIFS stucco surfaces.
EIFS (pronounced as Eef’s) stands for Exterior Insulation Finish Systems. EIFS systems are popular among architects, contractors and engineers as they offer up strong thermal and insulation efficiency, durability, and cost efficiency without compromising aesthetics. From the outside, EIFS is typically covered in a stucco-like finishing and forms the exterior cladding of many modern commercial buildings, condominiums and some homes. When properly installed, EIFS can withstand hurricane force winds, offers water protection and can last the lifetime of the building.
Unfortunately, traditional EIFS products and processes do not offer sufficient protection against damage caused by woodpeckers and other birds. When birds bore holes into the walls and other EIFS surfaces, it can damage the barrier, making the building vulnerable to water damage, mould and infestations from pests.
EIFS is constructed in layers that typically consist of:
When a woodpecker or flicker creates a hole within the EIFS siding, the layers of the exterior finishing are revealed and exposed to the elements. You will typically see the mesh and the polystyrene foam; depending on the depth of the hole created, you may see the substrate (often plywood or OSB).
When it comes to EIFS clad buildings, woodpeckers tend to gravitate towards eaves, trim, and other secluded, shaded areas, though damage can appear in any area of the EIFS siding.
A number of factors determine how susceptible a building is to woodpecker or flicker damage. Woodpeckers and flickers can be found in the majority of North America’s most populated regions. The majority of the eastern United States and Canada are home to several species of woodpecker or flicker and the birds can also be found in the Pacific Northwest, throughout British Columbia and into the northern and wooded areas of the Canadian prairies. As climates throughout North America continue to change, birds are being found in new territories too.
When woodpeckers damage EIFS and create holes in the finishing, you will need to replace the entire panel. Often buildings have more than one damaged panel and we’ve seen anywhere between ten to three hundred holes in a building. The birds return annually, so it can cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair the woodpecker damage each year.
After repeatedly repairing the damage caused by flickers and other woodpeckers to commercial buildings, we began working on a new system that would deter the birds and prevent future damage. After three years of development, EIFS Armour was created and this patented exterior wall system is quickly becoming the leading solution to exterior woodpecker damage.
EIFS Armour utilizes a diamond mesh system, combined with a unique anchoring process and acrylic hardeners to creating an exterior siding that is virtually impenetrable. This patented surface makes it impossible for woodpeckers and other birds to bore holes into the wall and create nests. No other product can make that claim and we are so confident in our solution that we offer a lifetime warranty against bird nesting.
While the EIFS Armour system is best utilized at the beginning of your construction project to prevent bird damage from the start, it can also be used to repair and replace existing EIFS panels that have sustained bird damage. Alternatively, some of our clients have worked to replace all existing EIFS panels with EIFS Armour to reduce the costly annual repairs to woodpecker damage.