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I have a new flood light/security camera that I want to mount above the back deck. The current flood light is a bit low and doesn't have a proper junction box. I want to use that connection and run conduit a couple of feet higher and hang my new light/camera there. The exterior is stucco and the structure underneath is brick (with a wire mesh in between). Everywhere I read that you don't want to drill through stucco (particularly here) but what if you have no choice? Also, I hung window bars recently and we just used a hammer drill to go right through the stucco and brick before using a tapcon. Similar to this post, I'm also in Baltimore but I know my house is stucco over brick.

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Well drilling stucco may fracture it and allow leaks but you have a brick wall behind this so that rule is not quite the same as stucco over wood frame. When I have to drill or cut stucco I use concrete bits at a fairly high speed not a hammer drill hammer drills break it up and catch the mesh making a bigger problem. The higher speed makes a lot of dust and usually easily cuts wire mesh (not expanded metal mesh) once you have your holes fill them with silicone sealer then put your screws in the pressure pushes the sealer into the cracks, if I see any cracks I will use a grout sealer above and around the hole. For stucco with expanded metal do not drill it will have very bad results. I usually use a masonry blade and cut a hole normally for a box, but the masonry blade will cut the stucco and will cut the metal but the metal will Accelerate blade wear have a few extras. Grinding a cut line works best but cracks can radiate from the cut. Again a grout sealer liberally applied helps to seal cracks if the cracks are large fill with paintable silicone sealer and make sure to texture the surface nothing looks worse than a smooth line when a coat of paint is used to cover and final seal. In both cases. I really have not had problems with high speed and wire but expanded metal the drill bit will grab and pull you in creating huge fractures 1/4” wide up to a foot away, with cutting in a box I move from side to side to keep from over heating and had the best luck with that and the thinnest masonry blade I can find I have used angle grinder and a skill saw more control with a skill saw but normally for a larger box. Those are my tips hope they help.

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  • This is very helpful input, thank you. I will update further depending on whether or not other responses come in. – mikeLdub May 21 at 18:29
  • Using a combination of regular drilling and some hammer action was effective at reducing unwanted chipping. Then I used the suggested technique of filling the hole with silicone sealant before inserting the screws/tapcons which also worked well. I'm confident this is a solid approach. – mikeLdub Jul 16 at 16:21

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