The siding on your home sets the first impression when anyone approaches it. The color, type, style, and condition of the siding can affect your home’s curb appeal. If it’s high-quality siding that was installed professionally, your home will look great for decades to come. However, there will come a time when it should be replaced.
Not only is damaged or worn siding an eyesore, but it can also result in structural damage to the home. Cracks and holes in the siding can be an opportunity for moisture to accumulate, causing rot and mold to grow. Those openings can also serve as access for pests and small rodents to gain entry. By ignoring signs of damage, it can cost you thousands of dollars in home repairs.
Look for these Indications of Damaged Siding
There are some obvious signs to look for and some not so apparent. If you notice any of the following issues with your siding, you may want to consider replacing it soon.
1. Overall Signs of Deterioration
Depending on the material used on your home’s siding, aging will appear in different forms. Vinyl can fade from years of sun exposure. It can become warped and uneven. Wood can rot or warp. Since wood attracts termites and other insects, you should have it checked for those pests on a regular basis.
You cannot see termites on the surface of wood siding because they tunnel through the siding from the ground up. There is no visible sign of infestation on the siding itself. You can get an idea if they are present by tapping on the siding. If it sounds hollow, the termites may have already deteriorated it. You may also see small mud tunnels running from the ground to the siding. Termites travel through these tunnels from the ground up.
2. Nails Rusty or Popping
Many types of siding will expand and contract with weather changes. This will cause pressure on the nails used to install the siding. If those nail heads or the entire nails have popped out, your siding is vulnerable to strong winds blowing pieces of it off.
If the nails show signs of rust, you will also likely see rusty-colored streaks running down the wall. This is the result of excess moisture which may have seeped behind the siding, causing further erosion and rot.
3. Seams and Caulk Cracking
Proper caulking of the seams in your siding is necessary to keep moisture out and make the siding more secure. If you notice uneven or crooking boards with gaps between them, your siding is at risk. This issue usually occurs when the siding has been installed improperly. If you notice it shortly after installation, contact the contractor for remediation.
4. Siding Boards Popping
Vinyl siding will contract and expand with changes in the weather. That’s why leaving enough room between the panels on installation is necessary. If you can hear popping, rattling, or creaking coming from the siding, call your installation contractor to reapply it correctly.
5. Fading or Flaking Paint
Exterior paint isn’t just for aesthetics. Cracked or peeling paint can leave your siding exposed to moisture and pests. Some types of siding come already painted. The way it’s painted will dictate how long the paint will last. Using high-quality paint and tools and the right amount of coats will extend the life of the paint.
Wood siding should be repainted every 3-7 years, depending on where you live. Vinyl siding usually comes in a limited selection of colors that are already mixed into the material. It can be painted if it fades, but be sure to choose paint specifically recommended for vinyl siding. James Hardie fiber cement siding comes in a wide variety of baked-in colors that can last over 25 years.
6. Rot and Mold
If your siding shows signs of rot or mold, it is defective and should be replaced. If you can see it on the outside, it’s likely that it’s also growing behind the siding. This can result in structural damage to your home. On wood siding, you may not even notice visible damage but you may smell a foul odor. That’s a sign that rot is beneath the boards.
7. Bubbling and Blistering
Vinyl siding of the past was susceptible to bubbling and blisters on the surface. But vinyl siding manufacturers in recent years have made it more durable and better able to withstand extreme temperatures. If your vinyl siding has these flaws, it’s definitely time to replace it.
8. Dents, Chips, and Cracks
If you’ve experienced a recent severe storm or hail, you may want to inspect your siding for signs of damage. Dents are unsightly, but they usually don’t cause further damage. Cracks or chips on the surface, however, will make your home susceptible to moisture damage and pest infestation. If there’s good news for this issue, it’s that most home insurance policies will cover the cost of siding replacement for this type of situation.
9. Damage from Birds and Animals
Critters like birds, squirrels, field mice, and other wild animals are always looking for spots to nest or keep warm in cold weather. If they have gotten into or underneath your siding panels, you’ll probably hear skittering or unusual noises coming from the attic or walls. If there are only one or two minor holes, you may be able to close them up without it being too noticeable. Otherwise, your only recourse is to have the siding completely replaced.
10. Unusually High Utility Bills
Are you seeing unexplainable increases in your heating and cooling bills? Your siding may be to blame. If it’s older, it may not have included proper insulation to keep your home comfortable no matter what the weather is outside.
The Best Siding Available
So, you’ve decided it’s time to replace the siding on your home. Now what? Do you go with wood, vinyl, or some other material? Whatever material you choose, make sure it’s high-quality and properly installed, or you’ll find yourself in the same predicament within a few years.
How would you like to have brand new siding that looks great, comes in a wide variety of colors, and includes a 30-year warranty? That’s what you get with James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding. This fiber cement siding is made from a blend of cement, sand, and cellulose that mimics the look of real wood but is more durable than traditional wood siding.
James Hardie siding is low-maintenance, requiring a simple rinsing with a garden hose a couple of times a year. It looks great and lasts longer than vinyl or wood. James Hardie siding products carry a 30-year limited transferable product warranty against chipping, rotting, and cracking.
There are many styles of James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding to choose from. You can complement your home’s architectural design with Classic Colonial, Victorian, Craftsman, or Farmhouse looks. The wide color selection gives you many options for neutral to bolder colors that fit your personality and design preferences.
James Hardie is doing its part to preserve our environment and natural resources. Fiber cement siding is made with recycled materials. James Hardie fiber cement siding recycles the materials in its products – including reusing the water, which is recycled four times throughout the process. They have committed to reducing their greenhouse gas intensity by 40% by 2030.
Choose Your Local James Hardie Elite Preferred Contractor
When you choose the best siding, you want it installed properly. James Hardie recommends hiring one of their certified installation contractors to install your fiber cement siding products. Banner Construction has completed all requirements and is an Elite Preferred Contractor for James Hardie.
To receive the James Hardie preferred status, contractors must have a proven track record of quality results, satisfied customers, and demonstrate high standards. Elite Preferred Contractor status is a measure of efficiency and standardized business processes. It is the highest level awarded to any contractor.
The James Hardie Contractor Alliance Program requires contractors to:
Receive regular and random installation audits by James Hardie
Have a satisfactory record with the BBB or other accredited agencies
Be professionally licensed and fully bonded
Maintain liability insurance of at least $1,000,000 per occurrence
Have worker’s compensation insurance
Comply with James Hardie Installation Best Practices
Successfully pass background checks
Implement a professional sales approach
Maintain a satisfactory credit report
Choose the Best Siding Installed by the Best Contractor
When you’re ready to get the best siding to make your home the envy of your neighbors, choose James Hardie Fiber Cement products. To get the best installation and warranty, choose the company that has years of experience and training in installing this type of product.
Give us a call or contact us today to learn more about how we can protect your home and increase its value with the best siding made. As always, we provide a free consultation where we’ll answer any questions and explain the process in greater detail. We look forward to working with you to beautify and protect your home for decades to come.