Compare Maintenance Requirements of Different Types of Home Siding

Posted on: 23 February 2018

When it comes to picking out new home siding, you'll want to consider your budget and how well the siding will complement your home. One other consideration will be how much maintenance the siding needs. If you don't want to spend time painting or making repairs, then you'll want siding that is durable. Here's how different types of siding compare when it comes to the amount of maintenance they need.

Wood Siding

Wood siding needs regular care and maintenance. It needs to be stained or painted every few years, so that adds to its overall cost. You'll have to pay a professional painter or scrape old paint and apply new paint yourself. Wood is also susceptible to damage which means you might have to repair it often. It might rot due to water damage or decay due to insect damage. Wood can also be damaged fairly easily by rodents or raccoons trying to get inside your house.

Vinyl Siding

Newer vinyl siding doesn't fade as quickly as old vinyl siding, so its color may last its entire life. However, if it does fade, you might want to paint it, although that could be after many years. Vinyl siding is tough, but it has the potential to crack if it gets brittle in very cold weather. When it cracks, you might have to replace some of the panels. It might also crack during a bad storm if a tree limb falls against the house, but under normal wear, cracking is not much of an issue. The vinyl panels show dirt, so the siding needs to be washed regularly to keep it clean and to get rid of mildew and algae. Vinyl's weak point is that it can melt. Pushing a grill too close to it could damage the siding and it would damage easily in a fire. This type of siding must be installed properly or it can warp due to the expansion and contraction of the panels.

Aluminum Siding

Aluminum siding also needs to be washed regularly to get rid of dirt and chalky residue from oxidation. Aluminum doesn't crack, but it does dent fairly easily since it is a lightweight metal. It can dent from storm damage or just from throwing a ball against the house. That means you may have to swap out panels occasionally to hide or remove dents. Aluminum is heat resistant and adds protection against fire. Aluminum siding doesn't always have to be painted, but it can fade over time and you may want to paint it to delay having to install new siding.

Fiber Cement

Fiber cement siding doesn't rot or succumb to insect damage. It's a heavy material that is very durable and it tolerates all weather conditions and storms. It doesn't absorb water so the paint on it doesn't bubble, flake, or chip due to moisture. The siding holds onto paint well so it won't need to be painted as often as wood. Cracks may develop in this type of siding, and if they do, you can repair them by patching. Fiber cement doesn't warp or melt and damage is rare so it shouldn't need much maintenance.


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