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Monthly Archives: September 2018

Winter Maintenance For Vinyl Siding

Keep it Clean. Regular cleaning is an important part of winter maintenance. This does not mean you have bundle up in all your winter gear and bear the cold to clean it every week; instead, wash it once a month with a power washer. When using a power washer, be sure to always put it on a low setting to avoid any damage, and if the siding is already damaged, do not use a power washer at all. As for a cleaning medium, use a mix of Trisodium phosphate and soapy water. Simply apply, and then rinse from the top down.

Check for Damage. It is important to always keep an eye out for exterior damage to your home. However, on a routine basis, you need to closely inspect your siding for damages and defects. Catching a small problem early on can save you a lot of time and money. Weekly inspections are a good start, followed by a comprehensive inspection conducted by a professional roof and siding company. When inspecting your siding, look for cracks, gaps, and water damages; but also remember to check weep holes (holes punched in the bottom of siding for drainage purposes) for clogging issues and pest infestations.

Hire a Professional. You are not expected to be a siding expert, so it can be a challenge locating all the possible vulnerabilities and defects on your home. For this reason and more, it is very wise to hire professional siding maintenance on an annual basis to ensure your investment is well-protected. There are thousands of people and businesses that claim to provide this kind of service, but do not be fooled by fly-by-the-night or unqualified companies. Be sure to choose a company that has extensive experience and a good local reputation for quality service.

Choose A Siding Contractor

Experience. It may seem obvious but this is something you need to ascertain before making the big decision. The question to ask is how many years has the company been in business. Is the statement of 20 years of experience include when the owner was an apprentice? You need a company that has been in business for years and has worked on and managed many jobs. The experience of the owner is important but all things being equal I pass on a siding company that has been in business for two or three years.

Reputation. What is meant here is local reputation. It is time to be skeptical, no more how many good reviews, of a company that operates hundreds of miles away. You need to be looking for a company that has an office within a reasonable driving distance. It is easy to check the reviews on the internet and that is one method but you should also ask for references from jobs they have finished. A combination of checking online reviews and checking references will give you a feel for what kind of company you are dealing with.

Quality Materials. Lots of experience and a stellar reputation will mean absolutely nothing if shoddy or low quality materials are installed on your home. This is a long-term investment so long-lasting materials are crucial. You need to know the details about the manufacturer’s warranty. If the manufacturer offers a solid warranty then you can feel assured that quality materials are being installed on your home.

Reassurance. Are you ready to make a decision? If you do not have all of your questions asked and answered then you are not ready. You want to know that all of your questions have been answered in a straightforward manner. Do you understand what it will cost? Do you understand the process? Do you have a clear and concise time frame for completion? If there is a problem with getting straight answers then it is time to move on.

Properly Licensed. This will encompass a few things. It is wise to inquire that the companies you are considering have all of the proper licenses and insurance. You want to make sure that they will handle any needed permits. Do a little research and find out what is required and then verify that all is in order.

When Changing the Front Door

Why?

If you are bored of the look of your old door, then a change may be a good idea. Maybe you want to create a larger opening for guests to walk in so a bigger door might be the next move. Maybe you want more light to enter the house so a glass door would be idea. Or you might want the change simply because you found a more attractive front door.

Budget

You need to have a budget for the door. Many of these features could be extremely expensive because of the design, the brand and the material that was used to create it. If you prefer a custom door, then you’ll need to budget for it.

Light

Are you in need of more light but are not interested in installing more windows and lights? A glass panelled front door could do the trick for you. Glass panels also have many beautiful designs that give any house an elegant appearance.

Quality

Some people decide to change the entire door because the material has either rusted or perished. It is important to also maintain certain materials such as wood as it does tend to absorb water. Adding a layer of varnish can prevent water from being absorbed. When replacing the damaged door, you have to remember that there is a certain amount of care that some doors need in order to last for long periods of time.

Space

Are you changing the door because you want to create more space on the inside? This is a perfectly logically explanation for wanting to replace the door. Some people also don’t want to have such a large door taking up so much wall space on the inside.

Disadvantages of Wood Siding

Maintenance

One of the most common complaints about wood siding is the level of maintenance it requires. Siding like vinyl and fiber cement are low maintenance, and will last for years to come. However, wood is porous, making it more vulnerable to the outdoor elements, especially moisture. Mold, mildew, wood rot, and more are common issues associated with moisture problems. This means it must be stained and painted at all times, routinely re-sealed and weather-proofed, and cleaned on a more frequent basis. Not only is this level of maintenance difficult to keep up with, it can be costly and time-consuming too. This is something to think about, especially if you are not in a position to provide the maintenance yourself, nor hire a professional company to provide it for you.

Aesthetics

Another common issue with wood siding is warping and swelling, which is caused by moisture absorption. Once the panels dry out again, they do not return to their original shape. This leads to gaps, cracks, energy loss, pest infestations, and more. Not only does this affect the overall aesthetics of a property, it will cost you in the end since defective panels and boards will need to be replaced to ensure the structural integrity of a home or building. In serious cases, it can also increase home energy bills.

Durability

Durability and longevity are common concerns when it comes to wooden siding. Because wood is a natural element that is porous and susceptible to moisture absorption, it is always at risk of wood rot and dampening. Overtime, this can cause wood to soften and deteriorate, which leads to all sorts of structural and aesthetic problems. And in the end, all of these problems require money, time, and construction to resolve. This is especially true for wood rot that results in mold and mildew outbreaks.