West End Siding
Top Exterior Siding Options
Siding gives you a great way to add colour and definition to your house. There are lots of options these days to help you create the perfect façade and you want to choose carefully. While aesthetics are always important, you also want to consider the material’s durability, ability to resist water, ease of installation and versatility. Your home is the largest investment you will make in your lifetime, so it is important to have a home that looks its best for years to come. Your home’s exterior is exposed to the elements each day, which can damage the siding and the paint if it isn’t properly sealed. A high-quality exterior membrane, such as acrylic vinyl siding, can protect your home from both weather and damage. Before you choose any type of exterior siding for your home, it is important to know the different types of materials available to you.
Commonly used for bungalow, Cape Cod and cottage exteriors, wood siding offers a rich look and is durable if maintained properly. If you are attracted to this look keep in mind that it requires periodic maintenance (chalking and painting or staining to prevent weather damage) and is susceptible to insect or rodent attacks. Depending on maintenance, your rich wood siding can last from 10 to sometimes 100 years. Wood siding comes in clapboard (also known as lap or bevel siding) as well as shakes and shingles. Clapboard siding uses planks of wood installed horizontally with an upper piece that overlaps the lower piece. Western red cedar and redwood, woods are known for being attractive and durable, are considered the best choices. More uniform in appearance but thinner than shakes, shingles give you a smooth and consistent look. They can be cut into different shapes to add visual interest to your exterior. Some manufacturers also offer shingles treated with fire-retardant chemicals, often a requirement in high-risk locations. Be sure to check into the local rules in your area. Wood siding typically costs around $5 to $10 per square foot installed. That doesn’t count the additional cost for painting or staining.
Wood is the most popular types of house siding because of its versatility and durability. Wood has been a popular material since the time of the Ancient Egyptians because of its beauty and availability. Wood can be painted and stained to make it look great, but it is not suited for all types of climates. Wood does not crack as easily as other materials, so it can be a good choice if you live in an area with a lot of seasonal weather. If you live in an area where there is a lot of rain, wood may rot more easily because the moisture increases the rate at which it decays. It can also rot due to various fungi that attack wood and make it look ugly.
The low cost, versatility and easy maintenance of vinyl siding have helped it become the most popular siding choice in the United States. While some design professionals and homeowners are turned off by the “plastic look” of some vinyl siding products, the variety of colours and styles available helps explain this siding’s popularity. Requiring few tools to install and available at home improvement stores, this is an option for those looking for a do-it-yourself product. Since mistakes can be costly, make sure to follow instructions from the manufacturer and take advantage of online how-to videos.
Vinyl is another popular material for exterior siding. It is a relatively inexpensive way to paint your home exterior. Vinyl paint does have some maintenance requirements, such as occasional painting and waxing. However, it can protect your home from damage by termites and other pests, which can be very expensive to treat.
Made from fired clay, genuine brick comes in different sizes and textures. Brick is commonly found on Colonial, Tudor and English cottage exteriors, providing a beautiful look that has been used for hundreds of years and has stood the test of time. These days brick siding is usually a veneer constructed outside of a home’s wood-frame structure, with mortar used to hold the bricks together. Since water can penetrate brick veneers, a membrane installed between the brick veneer and house can protect the structure. Under normal conditions and when installed correctly, brick siding can last the life of your house. Installing brick is labour-intensive, so the cost is on the higher end compared to other siding options. Typically, brick siding costs around $6 to $15 or more per square foot installed.
The natural beauty and durability of stones like granite and limestone are appealing to homeowners who want a siding that adds texture and visual interest to their exterior. Because stone is more expensive than other siding options and can be difficult to add to an existing home concerns about costs should be considered. More lightweight and less expensive than natural stone, stone-veneer siding comes in natural and synthetic materials. There are many styles available that help enhance your home’s curb appeal. Annual cleaning with a hose and inspection of the siding helps ensure it will last the life of the house. The average cost of stone is around $10 to $30 per square foot installed, and if maintained properly, can last the lifetime of the house.
Stone is very expensive, but it is very durable. It has been a popular material for house siding for hundreds of years, so it must have some advantages. The price of the stone varies greatly depending on the quality, quantity, and location. The most expensive stone products are imported, and they can be very expensive, so if you are interested in this type of product, check local construction sites to find the best deals on installation.
Traditional stucco is made from building sand, Portland cement, lime and water. A waterproof barrier paper and galvanized-metal screening are applied over wood walls before stucco is added to provide a good base for the stucco and protect the walls underneath. While stucco can be applied to homes with brick and stone surfaces, the classic look is commonly found on Mediterranean, ranch and Spanish-mission exteriors. Because stucco is very rigid, careful installation can help reduce the possibility of unwanted cracks. When stucco siding is properly installed and maintained, it can last the lifetime of the house.
Offering the look of masonry, stucco or wood at a lower cost, fibre-cement siding has become a popular siding choice for many homeowners. Fibre-cement siding is low-maintenance, non-flammable and termite-resistant. Available in a range of styles and textures, factory painting or finishes are highly recommended. On the other side, the fibre-cement siding could encounter possible moisture-related problems, and older homes built before the late 1980s may have siding that contains asbestos and requires a professional abatement contractor for removal. The average cost is $6 to $12 per square foot installed (cost higher with trim), and the siding will last 25 to 50 years, depending on the manufacturer.
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There are many pros and cons associated with all types of material for your home. A professional will help you evaluate your needs and determine what best fits your situation. He or she will help you explore your options so that you can choose the product that is right for you. No matter which type of material you choose, you will save money in the long run. Many homeowners find that the benefits of choosing a quality exterior siding material far outweigh any cons or costs.
When you are considering siding for your house, you need to consider the real thing. Do not let salespeople talk you into something just because it is cheap. A professional will examine your house and give you an honest evaluation based on his observations. If you choose engineered wood, stone, or vinyl for your house, you will get years of use and enjoyment out of it, so it is worth the investment.