Your home’s siding plays many roles. It acts much like insulation by creating a barrier between your home and the harsh elements. Siding also makes a drastic difference in your home’s exterior aesthetics. Replacing your siding can boost curb appeal while simultaneously increasing your home’s value. On average, siding lasts between 20 and 40 years depending on the material and thickness. Once your siding begins to show signs of excessive wear and tear, it is time to consider an upgrade. Here are just a few of the most common signs that your house needs siding replacement.
1. Presence of Gaps and Cracks
Gaps and cracks in you siding are not only unsightly, but can compromise the structural integrity of your home. Holes, no matter how small, can allow moisture to seep into the space between the siding and the house. Water from rain, snow, and ice can contribute to wood rot, causing your wood siding and the materials behind it to literally crumble. If the wood rot is excessive, the effected materials will need to be replaced. When choosing an upgrade, consider a high-quality rot-resistant material such as vinyl siding.
In addition to moisture, gaps and cracks in your siding can also allow insects and other small critters to enter your home. These pests often begin in small quantities but can quickly reproduce and spread. Certain types of pests, such as termites, can cause devastating damage as they slowly eat away at the wood inside your home. It is often easy to spot pest problems as you will see the insects or critters going in and out of your home. You may also see nests or tunnels made by the pests, especially if an infestation has developed.
2. Increasing Energy Bills
One of the biggest signs of air leaks in your home is an increase in your monthly energy bills. As heating and cooling account for a large percent of your home energy usage, it is only natural to want to prevent air loss. Unfortunately, siding in disrepair can allow heat to escape in the winter and cool air to escape in the summer. Siding replacement is an effective way to make your home more energy efficient while allowing you to save on your utility bills. Modern siding is more effective at blocking drafts and can make a huge difference in your home’s overall efficiency.
While there are many different types of siding that can be used to help insulate your home, vinyl siding is one of the best for energy efficiency. When you install vinyl siding, you are increasing the R-value, or thermal efficiency, of the exterior of your home. This allows heat to better reflect off of your home’s exterior which prevents your HVAC system from having to work as hard to keep your home comfortable. Wood shingles and beveled wood siding are also efficient, but require more regular care and maintenance.
3. Mold and Mildew Growth
Molds are a type of plant belonging to the fungi group. Although molds are always found in the air, they require certain temperatures and components like water to grow. While they are often used interchangeable, mold and mildew are very different. When looking for signs that your home needs siding replacement, look for a specific appearance that can tell you which you are dealing with. Mold is generally fuzzy and may have a wet or slimy looking texture. It is often found in green, blue, or black. Mildew appears more like a powder and is usually white or light grey in color.
Finding mold or mildew growing on your siding does not always indicate the need for siding replacement. If the siding is still in good condition, having a professional remove the mold may be a viable option. However, if you discover cracks, gaps, or holes in your siding in the area where the mold is growing, there is likely some level of water damage under the siding. Replacing the siding and repairing any underlying water damage will typically be required to remedy the problem. It may be helpful to call in a mold removal company to properly rid your home of dangerous molds.
4. Visually Worn or Outdated
If you are like many homeowners, you care about the appearance of your home’s exterior. As your siding makes up the majority of your home’s façade, it is important that it looks clean and free of major defects. Siding that appears heavily worn, faded, or outdated can negatively affect your curb appeal. Not only will your property look rundown, but it can also make it difficult to market your house if you ever decide to sell. Siding replacement is the ultimate way to protect your investment.
If you have wood siding, consider how often you have to paint it. If you have to paint your home more often than every five years due to peeling paint, there is a good chance that your siding needs to be replaced. If you do decide to upgrade, consider a siding that requires much less maintenance, such as vinyl. Vinyl siding does not require the same amount of laborious upkeep as wood and other materials. It is also more efficient than many other options. Best of all, advancements in technology have made it possible to find vinyl in a wide range of colors and textures, even wood grains.
Call For a Free Inspection
As one of the most important components of your home, the siding requires regular maintenance. However, no matter how much care you provide your siding will need to be replaced at some point. It is not always easy to determine whether or not your siding needs replacing unless you have it thoroughly inspected by a professional. Siding contractors will inspect the exterior of your home to look for common problems like cracks, gaps, mold, mildew, and peeling paint. To learn more about siding replacement or to schedule a free no obligation siding inspection, contact expert siding contractors.