Home siding refers to the protective material that covers the exterior of a house or building. Regardless of its type, home siding has two primary purposes. It serves as the first protection of your house against outside elements like the sun, hail, rain, snow, heat, and cold. Siding also serves as a decorative material that gives your house a more attractive look. There is a wide range of materials that you can use for home siding.
Read on to understand the purposes and types of home siding, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of choosing each type.
Purposes of Home Siding
There are multiple purposes for exterior sidings. When choosing the best siding for your home, consider the following:
- Protection. Exterior siding is your first defence against naturally occurring precipitates like rain, snow, or hail, as well as the sun. While your house has other protective elements, the sidings will significantly reduce the damage taken by your house’s primary protective material.
- Aesthetics. Aesthetics is the most apparent purpose of home siding. Adding sidings to your house will give it a more sophisticated look and ultimately improve its architectural style.
- Value. Beautiful houses are more expensive. Hence, improving the aesthetics of your home will consequently increase its resale value.
Types of Home Siding
There is a wide variety of materials that you can use for home siding. Each of these varieties provides a unique feel for your home but possesses certain advantages and disadvantages. Knowing each type can help you pick the right home siding for you. You might also want to start a home siding contractor business, so becoming an expert on home siding is a must.
Below are some of the common types of home siding.
1. Thatch. Thatch is one of the earliest materials used for wall siding as well as covering roofs. Thatch siding is composed of dry vegetation such as straws and reeds that prevents water from getting into houses.
2. Wood. Wood is the most traditional type of siding that provides a beautiful and natural look to your home. The commonly used species for this kind of siding are cedar, spruce, pine, and redwood.
Wood is easy to install and better at reducing impact than any other type. You can leave it in its natural state or customize it with paint colors and stains. However, wood siding has the disadvantage of being susceptible to damage caused by termites and rot. You may also tend to spend more on maintaining this siding since its appearance is harder to maintain. It is also very prone to fire damage. If you are living in an area prone to forest fire, this is a major deciding factor.
Wood includes the following profiles: board and batten, shingles, shake siding, composite siding, clapboard, drop siding, vertical boards, wooden sheet siding, and log.
3. Vinyl. Vinyl is a synthetic material popularly used for home siding because of its lower cost, lower maintenance requirement, versatility, and durability. It is relatively cheaper in terms of maintenance and price, ranging from $0.65 to $2.00 per square foot. As a versatile material, vinyl comes in many colors and forms, such as shakes, shingles, fish scales, and beaded designs. It can even be manufactured to mimic natural materials like wood. Lastly, vinyl is durable that it can last for decades with proper maintenance.
Just like other materials, vinyl is not without disadvantages. This material is not waterproof, which means that poor installation can allow water to creep behind the vinyl and damage the wood underneath. In addition, the color of vinyl you will choose is for good because you cannot paint over it. You can only change the color of your siding by replacing all your vinyl panels.
Vinyl includes the following profiles: vertical, horizontal, and shingles.
4. Metal. People have always wondered whether metal also works well as a home siding since it is mainly associated with retro and modern buildings. However, metal is just as good as any siding. You have two options for your metal siding: one that looks like metal and another that mimics wood.
Metal siding may use steel or aluminum, and each variety has its pros and cons. Using steel is more expensive, but it is more durable than aluminum. The drawback for this set is its tendency to accrue rust, especially if not covered with a rust-resistant coat. For houses situated in areas with high humidity, the aluminum option is a better choice. Albeit cheaper, aluminum is a delicate material prone to dents.
In general, metal is good if you want a siding that can resist damage due to rot, mold, and water. In addition, metal requires little to no maintenance at all. The drawbacks to this type of siding are:
- It is more expensive.
- It is hard to restore to its natural look when scratched.
- You cannot change its color.
5. Brick. If you are a fan of classic houses, you may opt for brick type home siding. It is remarkably durable, as proven by century-old brick homes and buildings that remain sturdy until today. Although brick is not a popular type of siding, it is suitable for giving your home a rustic and elegant appearance. Additionally, it supports your home’s entire structure.
The advantages of using brick include:
- A shield from termite invasion.
- Resistance to fire.
- Protection from extreme weather.
More importantly, brick does not fade in color and even improves in appearance after a long time. However, brick suffers from the disadvantage of being expensive. It has a higher price and higher cost for installation than other materials.
6. Stone. Stone siding uses limestone, slate, granite, and other natural stones. Although stone is expensive, you will benefit from its long life span and lower maintenance. Plus, it gives your home a prestigious and natural look. The downside to stone, like brick, is its high cost of material and installation.
7. Insulated Siding. Insulated siding is considered an improved version of vinyl siding. It has expanded polystyrene foam (EPF) attached to its back to fill the gap between the siding and the wall. Aside from this, insulated siding is designed for energy efficiency as it can reduce energy consumption by up to 20 percent. Manufacturers also often claim that insulated siding can last more than 50 years.
Home siding is an essential component that protects and beautifies your house. When choosing the right type for your needs, always consider its purpose, design, cost, pros, and cons.