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Siding FAQ's

Vinyl siding is typically less expensive than wood siding, particularly cedar. Hollow vinyl siding, which only consists of interlocking panels, is the least expensive vinyl option. Foamback vinyl, which has filler in the panels, costs more than hollow vinyl due to the cost of the additional material. Foamback vinyl is regarded as a higher-performance option than hollow vinyl. Wood siding typically costs more than either, with the least expensive cedar option being a little more expensive than foamback vinyl. Wood pricing depends on the style and size of the siding materials. Since there are many different wood siding options, there is a larger variability in price.

All siding materials can last for a very long time, although some require a much higher level of maintenance than others if they are to last a comparable amount of time. With that being said, fiber cement siding, vinyl and metal siding do tend to last longer than wood siding even with proper maintenance of the latter. Natural siding products can have slight, imperceptible imperfections than can lead to issues down the road, whereas manmade product longevity will depend more on the quality of installation and the material itself. James Hardie siding lasts longer than any other siding on the market and has a minimum 30 year warranty. Hardie can last up to 50 years with proper care compared to most siding that averages about 20 years.

Types of siding can be categorized by material and style. The most common siding materials are fiber cement, vinyl, and wood/cedar siding. Metal is also used but is less commonly used. Other materials such as stone, brick and stucco can also function as siding. The most common styles of siding are lap siding, panel siding, shingle siding, and vertical plank siding. Lap siding consists of horizontally installed overlapping boards and is the most commonly used style. Panel siding utilizes larger boards that are installed edge-to-edge. Shingle siding is made up of smaller boards of varying sizes which overlap each other. Vertical plank siding can be done as board and batten, channel siding, and tongue and groove, the last two of which can also be installed horizontally.

The cost of a new siding system can fluctuate by tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the material, style, previous damage, and the amount of siding required by each home. Residing is not cheap, but the variability in price allows for most homeowners to find siding that will work for their needs.

Fiber cement siding is the most installed siding material nationally. Most new developments use fiber cement siding due to the durability and lower cost when compared to other materials. It is also available in several styles and pre-colored options, but can be painted as well, making it an extremely versatile option as well. The most popular fiber cement siding manufacturer is James Hardie due to its quality and its incredible 30 year warranty.

Color choice can be an important one when considering a siding project. Some homeowners choose colors which are more commonly seen on homes, such as varying shades of browns, greys and blues. Homeowners who wish to give their exterior a more unique look can choose any color they want and have their new siding painted. There really is no single color that siding should be, but neutral colors tend to be chosen more often than brighter, more saturated options. A lot of homeowners also opt for a color choice that matches the environment surrounding them, think more earth tone neutrals for the Pacific Northwest vs. more red-orange warm tones in the Southwest. We have a wide range of colors for any preference or HOA mandate.

Your siding’s maintenance cycle will depend mostly on the specific material. Manmade products, like fiber cement, vinyl and metal will most likely just need pressure washing and potentially paint touch up to be properly maintained if it is installed correctly. Wood siding is much higher maintenance, and requires not only washing, but more frequent application of sealant and repainting. Most types of siding can be maintained by doing annual washed and repainting as needed. The best way to find out how to maintain your current or new siding is to ask a qualified installer such as us!

The cost of a siding install will vary most depending on the qualifications of the installer. The better the installer, the more likely that the install will cost more than an amateur installer. However, the quality of install does correlate directly with the cost to have it installed. An average homeowner with no previous experience could install their own siding and pay no more than the cost of the materials. However, the installation will likely be lower quality and more likely to fail than a professionally installed system, leading to more costly repairs and replacement sooner in the future. It is usually always worth it to trust a siding project to the most qualified person possible.

Vinyl is made in panels that have a lap-style profile, with each panel having two or three plank sections. These individual plank sections are most commonly anywhere from four to seven inches from top to bottom, which means that the panels can range from 8 to 21 inches each. 

It can, depending on the type of siding and the install method. Some siding systems, such as vinyl and metal, can let rain in on trim pieces and on the vertical seams where the planks or panels connect. Wooden siding can also let in rain along unsealed vertical and horizontal seams. Fiber cement siding is less likely to let in rain, provided that the system is properly caulked and flashed to protect the seams from intrusion. But no matter the type of siding, all systems should have a protective moisture barrier installed behind the siding itself. This barrier can provide an extra layer of protection from rain and water intrusion. Proper installation by an expert will also ensure your warranty is effective and valid. Improperly installed siding does not typically qualify for warranty replacements, this would include if any rain did happen to come through the siding.

All siding systems do come with some kind of warranty. Some systems, such as fiber cement and vinyl, come with warranties on the materials from the manufacturer as well as guarantees on the installation from the contractor. Other systems, such as wood, will come with more limited warranties which may focus more on the work performed than the material itself. James Hardie has the best warranty for siding products with a 30 Year Warranty.

Using commonality, durability, and reputation as the criteria, fiber cement siding made by James Hardie is the most commonly used, most durable overall, has the longest warranty, and is the highest rated siding brand in the world. Therefore, it is safe to say that Hardie is the best brand.

It is always worth it to ensure that your siding system is functioning properly and free from any defects or issues such as rot. It protects your home, the people who live there and your belongings from the elements. When the current siding system needs to be replaced, it is always worth the investment to have your home properly protected from the damage that sun, wind and water can do.

Siding should be replaced when it has begun to fail to protect the home properly. This can mean that it is beginning to let in water, or it can mean that it is beginning to rot or become detached from the house. It is usually better to begin the replacement process when these problems are newer, rather than wait for them to reach a critical point before addressing them as it can create more extensive damage to the home.

Inclusions will depend on what your siding company has decided to include in the siding cost and installation. Important inclusions are the siding itself, the vapor barrier, the installation, and what specific method of installation. There are some companies who will omit important inclusions such as job site services and specific materials used in the installation, or specific information about the aforementioned inclusions. Most will include rot repair at a high additional cost to their initial promised price. Pacific Exteriors, LLC has the most inclusions in the industry, and covers all of the necessary processes and materials for any siding install in the itemized contract. Additionally, Pacific Exteriors, LLC is the only siding company to address rot repair in existing sheathing and insulation at no additional cost to the customer.

You absolutely can, which does not necessarily mean that you should. Siding systems are complicated, labor intensive products which typically only function properly if they are installed completely and correctly, something which is nearly impossible for a first-time installer to do. It is better to trust an experienced, qualified installer to handle the installation properly rather than take a do-it-yourself approach.