5 Environmental Benefits of Exterior Stone Siding

5 Environmental Benefits of Exterior Stone Siding

Stone Exterior Siding Stone Exteriors

Exterior stone siding is a trend that has caught on in recent years, offering homeowners a beautiful and affordable way to improve the curb appeal of their homes without substantially renovating. But many folks these days are concerned with making sure that not only do their homes look nice, they also don’t impact the environment.

If this describes you, we’ve got good news: Stone siding is not only lovely, it’s a great way to update your house without contributing nearly as much toxic byproduct to our ecosystem. Plus, it brings plenty of other benefits as well. Let’s talk about five of the best.

1. Stone Is Insulating

Insulation is a big deal. If your home is properly insulated, you’ll expend less energy (and spend less money!) keeping it cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Stone, which is naturally resistant to shifts in temperature and doesn’t respond to changes in weather as quickly as other types of siding, is a great choice for natural climate control.

2. Manufactured Stone Reduces Quarrying of Scarce Natural Resources

Many types of “real” stone are quarried, which leads to chemical runoff, leaching of toxins into groundwater and ecosystem disruption. Our stone, made from concrete, requires much fewer quarried inputs than other types, and is therefore much better for the environment as a whole.

3. Stone is Fire Retardant

One of the biggest dangers with chemical-heavy siding such as plastic and treated wood is that they will release toxins into the air in case of fire. Stone, however, is fire retardant, decreasing the chances that a fire will release those unhealthy toxins into the air. Even if your house never catches fire – which is unlikely, of course – treated lumber or plastic used as siding can still release chemicals, which we will discuss in a moment.

As an additional benefit, there’s often no need to remove many materials in order to install stone siding. Unlike with some other renovation projects, where you might have to remove many parts of the home (potentially exposing harmful minerals such as asbestos), we can often install stone right on top of preexisting facades. The two main instances where the siding would need to be removed are if it is lapped or if the siding is Dryvit- however, the stone veneer can be applied directly over brick or non-lapped siding.

4. Stone Siding Uses No Unnatural Pigments

We use no unnatural pigments in our stone siding, instead taking our color from natural stones. You may see major color variation in quarried stones in showrooms, our stones are consistently colored and molded using a reliable process that produces beautiful results every time. This leads to a very natural-looking material, with some eye-pleasing variation, and it also makes for a streamlined look and overall appeal.

5. Great Replacement for Chemical-Heavy Wood or Plastic Siding

Many types of siding have to use a great deal of chemicals to make them resistant to weather or to reduce the chances of warping and fire danger. Stone doesn’t require treatment to protect it from weather, to reduce shrinking or expansion or to protect from fire. Plus, far fewer chemicals are used in the manufacture of stone than in plastic or treated wood.

Take the Eco-Friendly Approach

If you’ve been thinking about updating your home, stone veneer may be just the ticket. They’re not only beautiful, they’re incredibly eco-friendly and easy to install. Here at NorthStar, we love helping customers improve the look and value of their homes through the application of stone veneers. Although a popular use of stone is for the exterior of houses, we also offer veneers for fireplaces and mailboxes in many different styles. Call or visit to learn more about us and our stone veneer today.

5 Weekend Projects That Will Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

5 Weekend Projects That Will Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Stone Exterior Siding Stone Exteriors

Who says you have to take on a huge project on the exterior of your home in order to add curb appeal? Not us! In fact, by doing a few relatively inexpensive and simple things you can update and add value to your home in as little as a weekend.


Spruce Up The Front Door

Take a look at your front door. How is it looking? A little faded or abused from a harsh winter or maybe a hot, dry summer really did a number on it? Maybe the doorknocker, doorknobs or kickplate is getting a bit worn? Believe it or not, your front door can send a significant message to visitors about you and your home and how you hope to present it.  Adding a fresh coat of paint or changing the color of your door can make a world of difference. Even getting new hardware (such as the aforementioned doorknocker, doorknobs and kickplate) can greatly improve your door’s appearance. Your door can tell your guests a lot about your home’s personality so make sure it is saying the right thing.


Add Some Lights

Not only will proper outdoor lighting provide you with a well lit walkway and the security of presenting a well maintained home, you can also use properly and decoratively placed lights to accentuate your home’s features. You can also choose to use lighting to highlight unique and beautiful landscaping elements that you are proud of. Some homeowners choose to use lights to highlight ornate stonework, their house number or artwork on their property.  There are numerous lighting options available from adding a new outdoor light post to hanging a new light fixture over your door. Solar powered lighting is a frequently used and excellent option because of its ease of installation and the variety of styles available. Go one step further and hang a well placed light in one or more of the trees in your yard, doing this looks gorgeous and actually replicates the effect of peaceful moonlight.


Plant a Tree

If no tree is available to hang lighting in, why not plant a tree or two? Adding trees, bushes and other greenery can really add beauty and dimension to your front yard. With spring on the way, now is a great time to decide what trees and other plants you feel would really add that extra something special to your property’s curb appeal. Before planting any trees make sure that you will not be digging near any electrical, gas or phone lines. Most areas have a special 1-800 number that can be called to check that none of these utility lines exist in the area you will be digging.


Rejuvenate with Stone

With stone you can be as elaborate or simple as you like. Depending on what you decide, you can complete your stone project in less than a weekend. For example, by placing slate stones over sand you can create a simple yet beautiful rock path within a few hours. Tutorials for a project of this scale can be found online. Or you might choose to go one step further and completely re-do your current walkway or driveway and replace it with brick or another stone option. This choice may require you to get some estimates and hire some experts and could take more than a weekend to complete, but the end result will truly be worth it! If you are content with your walkways and paths you could go one step further and add stone veneer to your home’s exterior. With stone veneer you have the flexibility of choosing your own color as well as cut and style of stone. Homeowners who have gone this route have been overjoyed with the elegance and prestige that stone has brought to their home’s appearance.

unnamed (19)

Replace Your Old Mailbox and Post

Replacing your old mailbox and the post it may be housed on is a quick project that you can complete within a few hours. You may even find that you have time left over to finish another project! A new mailbox can really add an extra touch of sophistication especially when it is paired with an elegant stand. Cast stone is a great option when considering a new stand because of the colors and varieties available. Another material commonly used today is a strong polymer plastic that is made to look like iron. A post can be found to fit every home’s personality from ornate scrolled posts to pedestal mount posts. Fortunately, these newer materials are virtually maintenance free and weather resistant and thus won’t succumb to time and the elements like some of the materials used in older mailboxes and posts.


These small projects are just a few of the many things that you can do to add some special touches to your home’s appearance. Why not plan something soon? If a larger scale project is in your future, like adding stone veneer to highlight some of your home’s features, consider calling North Star Stone. Their experts are here to help you design and plan ways you can add beauty and value to your home through stone. To learn why home owners in Chicagoland suburbs like Arlington Heights, Libertyville, Barrington and Mount Prospect are so happy with their new stone products, visit our Exterior Stone FAQ page or contact us at info@northstarstone.biz or call 847-996-6850 for a free estimate on your new exterior stone.

Stone Veneer For Lowes In Vernon Hills, IL

Stone Veneer For Lowes In Vernon Hills, IL

Stone Veneer

Lowes uses Stone Veneer from North Star Stone in Libertyville Il. The Lowes Store in Vernon Hills, IL needed new manufactured stone installed on the front of their building and needed a stone vendor that could quickly manufacture a high quality stone to install on the front of their building before winter.

The challenge for the Lowes store was to closely match the existing stone on the sides of the building and also to have the stone veneer coordinate and closely match the other commercial properties surrounding the development. The Lowes general contractor and masonry contractor worked together to select North Star Stone of Libertyville, IL to manufacture over 4000 square feet of our drystack stone veneer in a custom color. The combination of quick turn around, good pricing and local delivery is what earned North Star Stone the opportunity to manufacture the Lowe’s store stone veneer.

When you consider all the big box stores like Lowes, Home Depot and Menards all carry their own line of manufactured stones, it is nice to know that a local business like North Star Stone can still deliver a high quality stone veneer.

Feel free to look at our website for examples of how our thin stone can be used for your project either locally in the Chicago area, or to have our stone shipped.  Call 847-996-6850 to schedule a visit to our showroom.