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Siding Maintenance

There are many types of siding for homes and building structures. In our siding maintenance section, we will talk a little bit about the advantages that vinyl siding has over the other types of siding availiable.

Vinyl Siding

vinyl siding maintenanceVinyl is easy to maintain. From time to time vinyl will have to be washed to eliminate dirt, dust, grass stains, mold or mildew. For heavier stains, vinyl siding can be cleaned with a soft cloth, or soft bristled toothbrush (if the surface is textured). Some of the more common cleaners that can be used on vinyl include: Fantastic®, Murphy's Oil Soap®, Lestoil®, Windex® and Soft Scrub®. Since vinyl and its accessories will melt when exposed to significant fire or flame, owners of vinyl siding should take care to keep grills and combustible materials, such as mulch and dry leaves, away from the siding. MoreMore Info

Further Siding Options with their Pros and Cons

Aluminum Siding
Aluminum is easily maintained in the first few years. After that the color may fade or paint may peel, blister or crack. Aluminum should be watched for dents, which should either be repainted or the panel replaced. Aluminum may need to be cleaned to remove dirt, grass, or mildew. Pressure washing aluminum is possible but should first be done with plain water on low pressure. If low pressure doesn't seem to be making the area clean do a higher power test wash on an area that is less visible. The test wash is important because some pressure washers create enough pressure to break a 2 x 4. It is best to use a biodegradable detergent and hose it off with a light spray.

Wood Shakes and Shingles
These should not be installed close to the ground where moisture might work up behind them. If there is soil build up around the bottom of the wood siding, it should be removed. Shakes and shingles will fade over time, and may fade unevenly depending on landscaping or nearness to other homes that might cause partial shade. Shakes and shingles can be painted or stained to help preserve them. Depending on the climate, painting may have to be done every 5-7 years and staining may have to be done every 3 years.

Wood Planking
Wood planking will have to be painted. Again, it depends on the climate how long between paintings.

Composition Board or Hardboard
These must have a good deal of TLC, especially in wet climates. Composition board must be repainted more often than other wood sidings because it doesn't hold paint as well. If left exposed too long, the board will absorb moisture, expand and bow out. Unlike solid wood, which will shrink after it has expanded, hardboard will not. It may actually disintegrate. Make sure sprinklers and leaky downspouts don't wet the hardboard. You should always maintain 6-8 inches of clearance between the ground and the lowest board. Inspect the joints, the nails and the ends of planks. Caulk around cracked joints. Make sure nails haven't broken the surface finish or water will seep in.

Choosing a wood that is appropriate to your area is important to consider before you make your purchase. Some birds, like woodpeckers, have been known to punch away at the sides of homes. Should birds make holes in the wood they must be filled or replaced.

Brick and Stone Veneers
Spalling sometimes occurs with brick and stone veneers. That means that the brick or stone or mortar may fall out or crumble. This is especially likely to occur where wall meets wall or at the bottom of the wall. One way to slow spalling is to clear any debris from underneath the lowest course of the veneer. Under this bottom course are weep holes that allow moisture to escape from behind the veneer. Another way to help prevent spalling is keeping vines off siding. As vines grow and spread on siding they actually do 2 things. They hold on to the mortar making it weak and they trap moisture next to the house. If cracks or spalling occurs it should be patched or replaced as soon as possible. Mortarless brick will not have the problems that a brick and mortar siding does.

Stucco should be watched for cracks. All loose materials should be scraped from the cracks before caulking. Only use a paintable caulk.

Plywood Siding
Plywood can expand and contract at different rates than the framing it is attached to. This expanding and contracting at different rates can cause nails to pull out, joints to pull apart and siding may fall off. Keep the surface finishes fresh or plywood siding will deteriorate, absorb moisture and warp. Once the warping starts, the grooves in the plywood will split allowing even more water to penetrate until the siding actually pushes away from the under ply.

How can I find out more information?

We can help provide you with our quick and easy Siding Quote form so you can get the pricing information you need for your siding project. And as a thank you will receive the our Insider's Guide to Siding