Vinyl siding is a very popular option for homes. It is low maintenance, low cost, and is durable. How long does vinyl siding last? Depending on where you live, usually 20-40 years. That seems like a long span but it is strong and made to last.
Let’s take a look at why you need to know about vinyl siding, what it is and the maintenance, other types of siding, when replacement is needed, other areas to inspect, and when to contact a professional.
Why You Need to Know About Vinyl Siding
This is a popular choice for siding for homes for the reasons stated above. However, it is a good idea to always look at the other options and see what is right for your home and where you live.
What is Vinyl Siding
It is a durable plastic on the exterior of homes. Popular because of the low maintenance, durability, and easy to install and clean. Pressure washing once a year is a good idea and it costs between $3-12 per square foot.
- Doesn’t rot like wood siding – it is made of plastic so there is nothing to rot.
- Scratching and denting does not happen as easily as it does with aluminum – this is because the paint is baked into the siding so there is no peeling.
- Similar look to wood- people like it because it has the look of wood and is classy
- The range of colors, visually appealing and doesn’t need painting
- Provides a tight seal on the home and some brands are known for Energy Star ratings
Disadvantages of Vinyl Siding
- Some people say that it does not increase the value of the home
- Loses color over time and you can’t repaint it
- Doesn’t do as well in harsh climates so lifespan is less
Maintenance of Vinyl Siding
Maintenance is easy with vinyl siding. Rinse it off with a hose or pressure washer to get it clean and check the siding after bad storms.
Other Types of Siding
This is known as the most aesthetically pleasing siding and lasts about 20-40 years. However, also with that comes expense and maintenance. It costs between $3-12 per square foot.
- Wood siding is susceptible to wood rot, pests, and mold and checking for any signs of this is important each year.
- Re-caulking may be needed around the windows to prevent leaking, especially when it rains. Also, to prevent damage and extend the life of the siding.
- Unlike vinyl siding, the wood siding must be painted or stained and sealed every 5 – 7 years to keep out the moisture. We all know that once moisture gets in, mold or mildew can start to grow and it is a domino effect.
This siding lasts about 30-40 years and is cost-effective. However, it requires a lot of maintenance. It costs about $2-5 per square foot.
- After 15 years, the enamel fades, can become chalky, and wash away with the rain. Thus, repainting is needed.
- When repainting is needed, it doesn’t match the original color
- Denting happens more frequently as does scratching
- Not as low maintenance as promised.
How to Know That Siding Replacement is Needed
- The material is warping, thus water is getting underneath the siding and this can also mean that water can be getting into the home.
- Your HVAC is working overtime and not trapping the heat and cool air indoors. You will need to repair or replace the HVAC unit if it continues.
- You find holes, cracks, and other damage to the siding. Fixing and sealing these places is important.
- Mold, mildew, or fungus is growing on the siding.
- Dry and wet rot – this is giving pests a place to start going into the wood and destroying it as well as the home.
Here is a video about how to replace vinyl siding:
Other Areas to Inspect
When checking the siding, take a look at the roof as well. You want to make sure that you don’t have moss growing on the roof. If you do, be sure to get rid of it. Also, if you find that there is light coming through the attic or water spots, or wood rot in the attic, you may need to replace your roof sheathing.
Also, check the water inside and outside the home. If the water makes a loud banging sound after it turns off, you may have a water hammer issue that you need to have investigated before pipes possibly rupture.
When to Contact a Professional
Contact a professional if you have questions about the siding that is right for your home or any issues. Depending on where you live, one type of siding may be better than the other. Remember, cheaper is not always better and you want to find what will give you the most bang for your buck.
Siding is a big decision for your home and you want to make sure the right one is chosen. Maintenance and upkeep are equally as important. We will take a look at your siding when conducting a home inspection in the Houston, TX area. Do you need a quote or schedule a service? Click here. If you have questions about siding, comment below!