If it has been a while since you had your home’s siding replaced, or if you haven’t had it looked at since you moved in, now is likely to be the perfect time to have it inspected for any damage or potential problems. Homeowners need to remember that not all siding damage is immediately apparent. Sometimes, only a professional will realize when repairs desperately need to be done. Here, you’ll see a list of frequently asked questions about siding that will help you better understand how to care for the exterior of your home.
What exactly does siding do?
Even though almost all houses in the United States are covered with some sort of traditional siding, the vast majority of homeowners don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what this material actually does. Siding, as a matter of fact, serves multiple purposes. Perhaps its most important job is to protect houses from the elements. If the studs and interior walls of your residence weren’t covered with siding, they would certainly begin to deteriorate, leaving you with all sorts of problems, from potential bug and rodent infestations to mold issues to rotting wood. In addition, the siding looks attractive and adds curb appeal.
How can I gauge when my siding needs repairs?
There are several telltale signs that siding needs to be fixed. If pieces of your vinyl siding have begun to warp, bend, or crack, you should absolutely have them looked at as soon as possible. They almost certainly need to be repaired. Or, if you have wood siding on your home and it has started cracking, rotting, or pulling away from your house, it’s time to have it checked by a professional. Again, though, not all damage is immediately apparent, so having your siding every year is still a good idea.
What if my siding needs to be replaced?
In certain cases, it is actually more cost-effective to replace old siding than it is to repair it. If your contractor tells you to consider this option, the most important thing for you to do is learn as much as you can about the various types of siding that are available to you. There are three primary options on the market these days, each of which is outlined in the next section.
- Vinyl siding – Vinyl siding is the most common choice in the United States. It is durable, available in a wide range of colors, and affordable on most budgets. Vinyl siding tends to hold-up well in most Carolina climates, although it does bear noting that regular exposure to saltwater and salt air could cause it to require replacement more quickly than its normal 20-25 year lifespan.
- Wood siding – Once the only viable choice for siding, wood is still popular among some homeowners. It looks great, for instance, on cabins and rustic homes in mountainous regions of North Carolina and is perfect for authentically restoring historic houses. Western red cedar is among the most popular woods for siding today. It is important to note that wood siding boards require painting or staining every year or two and need more overall maintenance than other materials.
- Fiber cement siding – Fiber cement siding is the newest option on the market and is growing in popularity every year. This material is not as expensive as people often expect it to be and is arguably the most durable choice available to today’s consumers. Manufactured by the James Hardie Company, fiber cement siding boards are created using a mixture of cement, cellulose, and sand. Their color is baked on using a kiln, which means they remain vibrant for decades.
Whether you decide to have your siding repaired or replaced, finding a reputable Carolina siding contractor is key to having an enjoyable remodeling experience. Word-of-mouth recommendations can be extremely helpful when you are searching for a quality home services professional. Also, remember that consumer review websites can be an invaluable source of unbiased information.