Siding protects your home from the outside elements. If it has begun to rot or crumble, then it can no longer perform its vital role in protection. In cases of isolated damage, you may be able to repair only the affected area. However, if the rot has spread across the exterior, there’s nothing to do but start over, this time with a rot-resistant material.
How do you know when it’s time to replace your siding? Here are the warning signs and what to look for.
Rotting typically starts between the siding and the framing. When you inspect it, use a screwdriver to test the integrity of the board. When it has wet rot, it will be soft and may fall apart when you push into it. Visible rot is a sure sign that your siding needs immediate replacement.
This type of rot is different from wet rot. Dry rot is caused by a specific fungus. You likely won’t see it because the fungus needs moisture-rich areas, like the area between the siding and the framing. As you inspect for standard rot, tap the boards and listen for a hollow sound. Check for gray or white strands, which can indicate dry rot. Dry rot makes wood so brittle that it can crumble in your hands; if you discover it, you’ll need to replace your siding to fix the problem.
Holes or Hail Damage
Holes in the siding, whether drilled or caused by insects or wildlife, are never good news. If it has holes or hail damage, it can’t do its job anymore. Not only will it let insects inside, including wood-eating termites, but it will let snow, rain and moisture inside too. That moisture can lead to further damage.
Frequent Painting or Faded Siding
How often do you paint your siding? If you find yourself painting it every couple of years, it means it is taking a major beating from the elements. Paint should last anywhere from three to seven years under normal conditions. The stain should last about four years. Faded stain or paint indicates excessive sunlight exposure, which breaks down the protective barrier. Chipped or peeling paint can also mean that wind and rain are doing serious damage.
Warped, Loose Boards
Like holes and cracks, warped or loose boards are unable to protect your house from the elements. Warped boards won’t lie flat and may buckle in some areas. Loose siding may appear to hang off the house. Loose boards can also fall if you touch them. These are telltale signs of needing it replaced. In the case of loose or slanting boards all around the exterior, consider employing a professional to check for a shifting foundation.
High Heating and Cooling Bills
How are your heating and cooling bills? While a lack of attic insulation and a leaky roof can contribute to the problem, failing siding can too. First check with your energy provider for typical costs in your area. If you’re seeing higher bills than expected, look into replacing your siding and the wall insulation.
Bubbling means that water has penetrated it. This is often tied in with siding that’s lost its protective coating, whether it’s paint or stain. Unfortunately, it probably isn’t enough to just repaint or re-stain the siding – replace it so that the moisture doesn’t remain trapped inside, causing more damage.
Moisture Buildup Inside the Home
Failing siding can also affect the interior of your home. If you see moisture or mold on the interior walls, or if you see loose wallpaper or peeling paint, you might have an issue. This means the it has allowed moisture to seep in and into the framing. Siding replacement can sometimes require replacement of the vapor barrier as well.
Contact Industry Elite Services for an Inspection
If you notice or suspect any of the above signs, contact the experts for professional assistance from the experts at Industry Elite. We will perform an assessment of your siding at NO CHARGE and provide you with several options to address and solve any concerns we find. Our siding contractors will inspect and assess the issues, and based on the extent of the damage, we will discuss siding repairs or replacement. Aesthetically pleasing and effective siding is essential and makes a lasting impression.
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