What does Vinyl, Fiber Cement or Wood siding say to you? What does it say to visitors or potential buyers? Does your home exterior say style, maintenance or quality? Will you siding choice provide that lasting first impression you want to leave?
5 Keys to Evaluating your siding options
How does the siding product withstand weather, impact during cold or warm temperatures. Is the product resistant to fire, insects or damage from water?
The primary function of any exterior wall finish product is to protect the structure from water penetration.
Ease of installation
This has a direct effect on installation cost. Some products require special tools, safety gear, have lots of waste or excessive caulking.
Will your choice say warm and inviting, unique or classy? Any product can look good from afar!
Cost isn’t just about the initial price per square foot but the install cost, maintenance and overall life expectancy of the product.
Product categories you should consider
The most commonly used siding product in North America, this product holds color well, installs easily, has little maintenance and is low cost for product and installation. The con to Vinyl is that it is vinyl siding, known to be susceptible to fire, wind or wild kid damage.
Vinyl is considered a favorite with contractors due to the price point and therefore common in many subdivisions in North America. Distinguishing your home with vinyl takes some special effort in trim pieces, shutters or accents.
A few points on Premium VS Contractor Grade Vinyl:
• Premium vinyl is about the profile, color and mounting area.
• Profile on premium product is deeper causing a larger shadow area and reduces the wavy appearance often seen on contractor grade vinyl.
• Color of premium product is often darker, the dark color requires additional UV coating to protect from fading due to sun exposure.
• Premium vinyl product manufacturers have put substantial effort into how their product will perform in extreme winds. The measures to perform in extreme winds makes the product appear stiffer and sit on the wall straighter for a better appearance of finished product.
No, it is not the same as vinyl. Typically vinyl siding is extruded through a die therefore can not be made in long lengths. To produce plastic siding with the deepest patterns and crisp edges, panels must be molded and that usually means product less than 4 feet long.
These shorter molded plastic siding panels are typically used for Shakes and Shingles by themselves or in accent areas. Relatively low cost, easy to install and no maintenance, plastic siding can put the wow! factor into any home.
Many likely thought that steel siding went the way of the typewriter but it is still a viable option with a wide range of profiles and colors. Manufacturers claim that steel siding is four times more resistant to thermal expansion, warping and buckling than vinyl siding.
Metal will not crack or shatter due to hail or cold weather, it is fire resistant and environmentally friendly due to high rate of recycling, claim manufacturers.
Low entry cost means excessive competition and no single national brand to drive the product in the market place. Premium products require the marketing and brand recognition supplied by large companies. Steel is still a very good opiton in the right application.
Has the durability of concrete but the look of wood, no wonder Fiber Cement is expected to grow as much as 4.4% reports freedonia group.
Fiber Cement boasts: low maintenance, rot/fire and termite proof. It can be made to look like wood, stone or brick and is actually affordable.
Due to weight and some specialty equipment manufacturers suggest Fiber Cement is not a DIY project, availability of qualified installers is growing as fast as product acceptance.
Fiber Cement can have factory applied paint or you can buy it primed to really personalize the exterior of your home.
To a traditionalist this option offers the look, feel and smell and everything else is simply an impostor. Factory applied finishes, fire retardant processes and moisture control techniques make wood siding a fantastic option in the right setting. Wood adds rustic charm, warmth and character says naturallywood.com.
Stone Brick Veneer
In technical terms Veneer is a siding product. The ability to put a masonry product on a solid sheathing without a full foundation/brick ledge is fantastic. Often this product is used as an accent or knee wall with various siding products to install above.
Veneers can be bonded on or screwed in place both can be dry stack or finished with traditional mortar applications. The cost of Veneer is substantially more than other siding products, however it can really make a statement on your home. Installation is quite easy with special consideration to moisture control.
Return on Investment
The National Association of Remodeling Industry (NARI) and the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) recently collaborated on a report to examine personal satisfaction from remodeling projects, the report is called the 2015 Remodeling Impact Report. This report indicated that new siding appeals to both the buyer and increased value to the home for resale. The report also indicates that 83% of vinyl and 79% of Fiber Cement siding costs were recovered on sale of the home.
There is no right or wrong siding product, evaluate your needs, consider the look your trying to achieve and determine your budget so you can decide which siding product is right for your project.
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