Most homeowners consider their homes a work of art, an expression of their style, and indeed it is! The exterior tells a silent tale about the people residing within, thus choosing siding critical. Vinyl siding, over time, has gained momentum due to its aesthetics, durability, and cost-effectiveness. How long does vinyl siding last? As all good things come to an end, vinyl siding can last between 20-40 years with proper maintenance.
What is Vinyl Siding?
Simply put, vinyl siding is a popular home exterior cladding, made predominantly from PVC (polyvinic chloride). It’s known for its versatility, enabling homeowners to exhibit various architectural styles without worrying about maintenance or weather elements. But does its beauty stand the test of time?
The Lifespan of Vinyl Siding
On average, vinyl siding can last anywhere between 20 to 40 years when properly maintained. That’s almost as long as it takes for a sapling to grow into a mature tree. However, like every good thing in life, it doesn’t last forever.
Signs Your Vinyl Siding Needs Replacing
When your faithful timepiece starts losing time, you know it needs attention. Similarly, certain signs indicate your vinyl siding may need replacing:
- Fading or discoloration – you may be able to paint over it but it will depend on the
- Visible cracks or holes – there could be bugs and rodents getting in
- Warped panels – this type of damage needs replacing
- Mold, mildew, or fungus growth– try power washing it on a low level or spraying with a hose to see if it can all be removed.
- Rot – cracks, holes or gaps there may be water coming in.
Factors Affecting Lifespan of Vinyl Siding
Just as our lifestyle affects our health, several factors influence the lifespan of vinyl siding:
- Exposure to harsh weather conditions
- Quality of installation
- Maintenance routine
Repairing Versus Replacing
These are your two trusty knights when your vinyl siding shows signs of damage. Repair is ideal for smaller issues like a single warped or cracked panel. Another one would be if the paint has faded. However, if more than a couple of panels look weary, it may be time to bring in the new! It is a good idea to check with a professional to be sure.
Maintenance of Vinyl Siding
“You reap what you sow,” and this stands true for vinyl siding too! Regular cleaning using mild detergent, inspection for wear and tear, and periodic repainting can elongate its lifespan. Washing it once a year is a good idea. Also, painting helps protect the siding from UV which may cause it to fade in color faster.
Other Types of Siding and Their Lifespan
While vinyl siding is a great option, the market is flooded with alternatives:
- Wood Siding: 20-40 years, repaint every one to five years.
- Fiber Cement Siding: 30-50 years. In some environments, it can last even longer! It is low maintenance and durable.
- Brick Siding: 100+ years
- Stone Siding: 75+ years
Each has its pros and cons, so choose wisely!
Other Recommended Maintenance
Now that you know how long vinyl siding lasts, let’s look at other areas of recommended maintenance. One of those is seamless gutters. These are a great addition to the outside of our home. They are seamless and are built right there at the home with custom measurements and installation.
Another is cutting vinyl siding. If you choose to add the siding to the home on your own, you can cut it. It can be done with specific tools and also following instructions.
Lastly, lead paint on the outside of homes. The good news is lead paint stopped being used in 1978 after it was found to be toxic. The bad news is homes and buildings that were built before then could still have it and need to be inspected.
When to Call a Professional?
At times, DIY might not cut it, and getting professional help becomes essential. If there’s extensive damage, difficulty in sourcing matching panels, or complexity in installation, it’s time to dial up a professional. Taking care of siding may be difficult for you so reaching out to a professional is a good idea. If you are unsure of the durability of the siding, call on a professional company to take a look at it for you.
Vinyl siding, undoubtedly, adds charm to your home. However, being aware of its life expectancy, understanding when it needs replacing, how to maintain it, and knowing other siding options enriches your homeowner experience. Remember, it’s not just about choosing the right siding; it’s also about making the siding right for you! If you have questions about the condition of your siding, or for a comprehensive home inspection, reach out to Inside & Out Property Inspectors today.