Siding is the protective material attached to the side of a home. Siding shields your home against wind, rain, snow and debris. It also has a large impact on insulation and energy efficiency. When looking for the best home siding replacement options, aspects such as R-Value (the measurement of how well a material resists heat transfer), type of material, and how easy it is to clean should be at the top of the list. We’ve compiled a post of everything we think you need to know about residential siding. This includes siding types, important siding features and how to properly clean and maintain your siding for maximum returns.
Best Home Siding Options
James Hardie Fiber Cement
James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding is known as one of the highest quality exterior siding choices on the market and brings a return rate over 25% higher than the typical home improvement project. Our James Hardie Fiber Cement siding is 5 times thicker than Vinyl Siding, which allows it to perform incredibly well against wind, rain, hail and impact from debris. Fiber Cement can be styled to mimic various materials, allowing for complete customization.
Fiber Cement can come with color baked directly into it or primed and ready for a homeowner to paint themselves. This helps to ensure years of bright, vibrant color. Since Hardie Fiber Cement Siding contains very minimal cellulose fiber, it’s also resistant to insects and vermin.
Vinyl siding is a plastic-based, versatile, and durable material for your next siding project. Composed of PVC, vinyl can imitate the natural look of wood and other popular materials, while also maintaining energy efficiency and durability. It is a great choice for homeowners looking for a low-maintenance, budget-friendly option, and also happens to be one of the most popular choices in the country.
Our vinyl siding is designed to withstand heavy wind and weather, and is also resistant to excessive moisture build up. This can be especially beneficial for those living in a damp climate, as vinyl actively prevents dry rot over time. Vinyl is also one of the most durable options on the market and can last a homeowner over 40 years. Not only that, but according to a recent study, vinyl siding can provide a 74% return on real property value.
How to Clean and Maintaining Residential Siding
One of the best ways to save dollars down the line is to properly clean and maintain your siding. Ultimately, proper siding maintenance can lengthen material lifespan, improve energy efficiency, and even raise curb appeal. Here is how we recommend cleaning and maintaining your siding. All in all, different materials require different cleaning. Because we have recommended Vinyl and James Hardie Fiber Cement siding due to their durability, versatility, return rates and efficiency, we have compiled some brief recommendations for how to properly clean each one.
How to Clean James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding
We recommend washing the exterior of your James Hardie siding one to two times per year. This can often be done with your average garden hose. However, for a deeper clean, use a power washer to get all of the dirt, grime and stains out of the material. If you choose to wash your siding with a hose, make sure to use a light bristle, which can be picked up at any local hardware store, to scrub away at the layers. If you use a power washer, be sure to set it on low, so as not to damage the siding.
Regardless of which method you use, make sure to check for cracks or openings, as the water being used to clean your siding could ultimately seep through, and cause more problems than it solves.
How to Clean Vinyl Siding
One of the best features of our vinyl siding is how easy it is to clean. Vinyl siding can be cleaned one to two times per year by simply using a soft cloth, bristle brush, and some mild detergent. When cleaning your vinyl, be sure to look for cracks, just as you would with James Hardie siding.
If you use a pressure washer, set it on low, and aim the spray downward, at a 45 degree angle. Spraying up into the layers can force water underneath the siding and cause damage.
Once your siding is clean, it is important for a homeowner to keep it that way. Properly maintaining siding can ultimately lower your energy bills and even prevent future damage and repairs. There are a few general siding maintenance principles that every homeowner should follow. Be sure to:
- Keep your gutters clean
- Plan regular annual siding cleaning
- Check for bowing and warping
- Evaluate your siding after any large storms
- Apply fresh paint as needed
Signs it is Time to Replace your Siding
Make sure to consistently perform comprehensive visual inspections of your siding. Look for problems such as warped panels and dry rot. Warped siding panels often come from overexposure to heat, poor installation, or heavy weather patterns. Dry rot can come from years of neglect, cracks, or water seepage. Problems like these could ultimately lead to major renovation projects down the line if left unaddressed.
Another sign that it may be time to replace your siding is if you notice paint peeling on the interior of your home, as this could indicate water seepage. The same can be said if you notice mild water accumulation on the exterior or interior of your walls as well. Fading color, and the need for constant repainting can also indicate that your siding material needs to be examined. These issues imply your siding lacks consistency and has likely been worn down over years of sun, rain, and wind exposure.
Any or all of these warning signs are clear indicators that your siding is not performing as efficiently as it once did. If that’s the case, it likely needs to be inspected or replaced by a professional siding company.
Invest in Siding Replacement
Is it time to have a professional team inspect or replace your siding? Our work can ultimately leave a homeowner with improved insulation, upgraded exterior design, greater protection against the elements, and a solid return on investment. Blue Springs Siding and Windows has been providing quality siding services to the Kansas City metropolitan area for more than 20 years. Read more about our siding installation, or contact us today to get a free estimate.