Vinyl is one of the most durable materials you can purchase for siding. Vinyl siding won’t rot or degrade over time, but it can crack and puncture if damaged. Often, homeowners will choose vinyl siding over other options as many believe it requires no maintenance. Like other parts of your home, vinyl siding requires occasional upkeep.
Here are a few tips to keep you vinyl in good shape.
Trim trees and shrubbery near your siding
Branches and sharp shrubs can damage the vinyl on your home. Keep them trimmed and remove any branches or limbs that could land on your siding. Strong winds, storms, and hail can knock off limbs that can hit your siding. If possible before a storm, make sure your trees are trimmed and clean up any fallen limbs.
Keep items away
Lawn mowers, bicycles, snowblowers, weed eaters, shovels, and other common household items are often stored outside. Be mindful of where you park your lawn mowers and snowblowers as they can fall and knock off your siding. This happens more in cold climates as the low temperatures will make the vinyl more susceptible to breaking and cracking. Also, vinyl has a low melting point and burns slowly. Keep grills and smokers away from vinyl to prevent fires and melting.
Watch out for moisture
While vinyl does not rot like wood, it can conceal moisture which can lead to bigger problems. If there is a leak behind the siding, homeowners may not notice it. If you see any staining or streaking on your vinyl siding or on the foundation of your home, a leak is a possibility. Loose siding is also a sign of leaks as nails and screws that hold the siding to the walls will loosen in rotted wood.
Clean your siding regularly
Vinyl siding needs cleaning about once or a twice a year depending on environmental factors. Dirt and mold can accumulate on siding and can cause damage over time. Clean your siding with a water hose, a mild detergent, and stiff-bristle brush. Pressure washers are great for cleaning siding that has not been painted as pressure washers can remove paint. There are several tools and special cleaners you can buy to clean your siding with.
If your siding is fading, you can paint it. Use a high-quality exterior latex paint for the best results. Painting siding is recommended if you don’t want to have new siding installed and want to hang on to your current siding for a few more years. If you paint your siding, use a light color such as white, gray, off-white, or pale yellow. Dark colors absorb heat and can warp your siding in hot climates with strong sunlight.