Rotting, cracked, and loose siding can ruin not only the beauty of the outside of your home but can also affect the inside of your home if not taken care of quickly and correctly. We have all heard, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"... Did you know that this holds true for your siding on your home as well?
Let's dive into ten things you can do to prevent your siding from rotting before it's a problem.
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PAINT, PAINT, PAINT
Painting your home protects it from the elements. Direct sunlight, rain, and wind can increase the moisture your home is exposed to. The paint will protect the wood from the elements and keep your home looking beautiful as well. We all have heard it’s the last dollar you spend that is most important, and this couldn’t be more true with paint. The difference between cheap paint and a top choice paint, is around $20.00 a gallon and the top choice can last three times longer. What are we really saving here?
Schedule self-inspection in your home, using your smartphone reminders will help you stay on track with doing this a few times a year. Consider problem areas like the chimney flashing and soffits. Look at the very bottom of the siding around the house, keep debris away. Look for cracked seams and be sure to re-caulk and touch up with a little paint. These simple steps that cost you nothing go a long way to protecting your home and keeping it beautiful, and keeps the wet conditions outside where they belong.
Clean your Gutters
We suggest cleaning your gutters in the fall and then again after winter has gone away. A gutter cleaning routine will keep them from getting clogged with leaves, sticks, and other debris, which can cause a leaky roof and damage the siding long term. Gutters that have not been maintained well also allows for pests, mold, ant, and bee infestations of your home. This may be the reason you keep having to repair your soffits year after year. Simple cleaning will save hundreds here.
Upgrade Your Flashing Details
Without a drip edge or flashing, water can roll behind your roof’s edge causing damage to not only the roof and siding but also to the interior of your home. If you have an older home keep in mind that building science has changed a lot in the past few decades and this flashing can go a long way towards protecting your home from damage.
Pressure Wash Your Siding
Pressure washing removes mold, mildew, and debris that can be damaging to your home and the health of your family as well.
When mildew and mold are allowed to continue to grow, it can damage other parts of your home and cause long term health issues as well. What’s worse is it will cover small problems like cracking caulk lines that could have been caught early.
Keep Up With Exterminations
Inspect your home often for signs of carpenter bees, termites, and rodents. Take care of any issues you see quickly.
Carpenter bees can create tunnels in your home and weaken your home both inside and out. When they are allowed to get through the siding, they start attacking your roof, walls, flooring, and foundation. A good extermination routine will help prevent pests from making a home out of yours!
Inspect Your Window Sills
Inspect your window sills from inside and outside your home a few times a year to look for cracks and damaged wood. These issues can create deeper moisture issues getting behind your siding and causing damage you may not notice until it is a much bigger issue. You’re looking for cracks in the paint and caulk or a weakened look in the wood window sill. Most problems can be spotted by opening the window and inspecting the outside sill from the inside of your home. No ladders needed! If you can’t open your windows, just peek through the glass.
Install Ice and Water Shield
Install ice and water shield at the roof edges next time you replace the roof. This is a simple membrane that sticks to your roof decking and wraps down to your fascia board. It completely stops water from getting to your soffits. Installing an ice and water shield allows water to drain off the roof properly. This protection can increase your roof and sidings longevity and decrease your need for as many repairs long term.
Keep Downspouts Clean
As part of your gutter maintenance, be sure your downspouts also are clean and functional. Make sure they also point away from your siding and home in general. Water should never be allowed to pool at your home’s foundation wall. Make sure any brackets attached to your home are also in good repair, and any screw holes are appropriately caulked to prevent moisture from getting under the siding.
Pro tip: Run your garden hose down your downspout while the water is turned on. This will take care of any clogs you might have.
Building Science Changes
Building science and better materials continue to change. The way we now install siding has improved over the years and the types of materials are improving the protection they provide your home. It might be time to not only beautify your home but give it a level of protection to keep the interior of your home beautiful and safe for years to come.
Our motto is WE CAN DO THAT because WE FIX HOUSES. With over 40 years in the industry, we know what to do, how to do it, and what it will take to get it done.
Give us a call today at (205) 358-4963 or message us online!