If you live in a cold region, such as Chicago, you probably know that you need to prep the exterior of your home for harsh winter winds and snow. Taking the time to prep can save you time in the spring and keep you from accruing significant damages. While your siding is ideal for keeping your home protected and insulated against the cold, there are a few tips you should follow to ensure the longevity of your exterior. Here are a few ways in which you can keep your siding protected…
Installation – If it is possible, absolutely avoid having new vinyl siding installed on your home during sub-zero temps. Vinyl siding has a tendency to expand during cold temperatures which can cause troublesome gaps to appear come warmer weather. Only install during this period if it is an extreme emergency and can’t be delayed. In this case, wait until the sun is out, it is above freezing and there isn’t a ton of moisture concerns.
Paint – Never paint your vinyl siding because it can void your manufacturer warranties, including the lifetime warranty that many companies offer. Vinyl siding comes in a wide array of colors so you should be able to choose one that best fits your home.
Cover – While vinyl siding is resistant to fading, it is susceptible to outside elements discoloring it. For instance, sealants, some herbicides and pesticides as well as concrete stains can drift onto it and change the color. If you are doing any major work on the outside of your home, be sure to cover the nearest section of exterior siding to preserve it.
Inspection – Before winter sets in, do a thorough inspection of the exterior of your home. Make sure gutters are clear and hung correctly. Make sure there are no cracks or gaps in your windows or siding. Make sure your siding isn’t loose or cracked. Any of these issues can cause moisture to leak into the structure of your home and cause mold and mildew buildup. To correct them, you can rehang gutters and siding or caulk gaps yourself or contact your local siding experts to professionally seal any problem areas.
Wood Siding – If you have wood siding, keep an eye out for rotting sections due to moisture build up from snow, ice and rain. An early indicator of rotting wood is peeling paint so be sure to examine your home’s exterior before and after each winter. Have that section replaced as soon as possible so moisture doesn’t infect the rest of your home’s structure. Consider repainting or staining the surrounding areas to prevent areas in good shape from following suit.
Fiber Cement Siding – You definitely need to have fiber cement siding painted every now and then. Make sure your paint is high quality and never paint it when the temps are below 50 degrees. Be sure to caulk any gaps and to check existing caulk to ensure no sections are faulty or missing.
By keeping these simple tips in mind, you can prevent a minor issue from becoming a massive problem. Keeping your siding well-maintained helps protect your home’s structure and keeps everything running at peak efficiency for years to come. Inspecting the exterior of your home allows you to catch problems quickly and have professionals repair them immediately. If you feel that there is a problem with your home’s gutters, windows or siding or you would like a professional to complete a thorough inspection of your exterior, contact Chicago Siding Experts today!
Check out How To Know If You Need New Siding!