The Best Vinyl Siding On The Market
In some cases, finding the best vinyl siding requires you to only find one company, since the product and the installation are offered by the same place. In other cases, you need to shop around for what you think is the best vinyl siding product and then find an independent installer that you feel confident in and can trust. Either way, you will find that with the right vinyl siding product, you can't go wrong.
Choosing Vinyl Siding Over Other Types Of Siding
Once you have narrowed down your exterior wall coverage options to a siding product, rather than a material such as brick, stone, stucco or similar products, you then need to determine which type of siding is best for your home. If you look at a comparison between vinyl siding and cedar siding, for example, you will see some differences that will help you to easily make your decision. While both products will provide a different look to the exterior of your home, you will find that vinyl siding has a number of benefits and advantages as compared with cedar siding, especially when it comes to maintenance.
Vinyl siding is virtually maintenance free. It maintains its color and finish for the life of the product. In comparison, cedar siding needs to be painted, stained or sealed every few years. The average cost of repainting siding on a home is about $5,000 and it typically needs to be done around every 4 - 6 years to keep a home looking its best. Vinyl siding, on the other hand, never has to be repainted. It doesn't fade and there is no cracking or peeling paint to deal with. Vinyl siding is also more durable than cedar (or any type of wood) siding and will not crack or split over time. You also don't have to worry about insect or water damage like you do with cedar or wood siding. Find out more pricing information using our vinyl siding cost calculator.
One of the best aspects of vinyl siding is that it adds value to your home. You can generally recoup close to 100% of the money you spend on vinyl siding because potential homebuyers appreciate homes that require no expensive or time consuming maintenance and they know the product will last a long time.
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Selecting The Best Vinyl Siding Manufacturers And Products
If you have already narrowed down your choices and have decided that vinyl siding is the best option for the exterior of your home, then it is time to find the best vinyl siding products and manufacturers. There are a number of companies that offer high quality vinyl siding products, so finding the best vinyl siding product to meet your needs shouldn't be too difficult.
When deciding what the best vinyl siding product is for your home, you will want to consider a few factors. The first is the thickness, or the gauge, of the siding panels. Thicker panels are better quality, but they're also usually more expensive. You'll also want to consider the finish that would look best on your home. There are traditional cedar grain panels, smooth grain panels for a sleek and clean look, or even pieces that are made to resemble cedar shingles. You'll also want to consider the profile of the siding panels. For example, you'll need to determine if you want a beaded panel or one that gives your home a more traditional clapboard look. Color is also a major factor in selecting the best vinyl siding product for your home. Most manufacturers offer a wide assortment of colors but if there is something specific that you are looking for, you may choose to go with one company over another. If you choose a darker color for your vinyl siding, you should also make sure you go with a quality product that will best resist color fading, since darker siding products are more likely to fade than lighter ones.
Here are a few of the major manufacturers and what they offer:
CertainTeed Siding - CertainTeed is one of the best vinyl siding manufacturers in the market. They have a number of lines of vinyl siding products, including their popular Wolverine Siding Systems line. CertainTeed also offers many other options, including their TrueComfort Insulated Siding, as well as the Restoration, Carolina Beaded, Millenium, Encore, Classic, Ashland Davis, Pro Edition, Premium Series and Easy Care lines. Read more on CertainTeed Siding.
Each of their siding lines offers different choices for homeowners so that they can choose the best vinyl siding option for their home. For example, the Restoration line, which is designed to provide a Colonial look and feel, has a cedar shake graining and is a bit more expensive than some of their more traditional siding options. The Ashland Davis line features high-end Victorian classic design. The Pro Edition is a heavyweight vinyl siding product that is available in sixteen color choices. Their Classic line is the least expensive line and comes with a wood grain texture. All of their siding products are virtually maintenance free and in addition to the siding panels, they also have specialty pieces available for soffits, fascias, rake boards, covered porch ceilings, and more.
Owens-Corning Siding - Another major manufacturer of vinyl siding products is Owen-Corning. Like CertainTeed, they offer a number of product lines so you can find the best vinyl siding options for your home and your budget. Their lines include the Reminiscence, ProForm, Supreme Plus, Beaded, Narrow Plank and Classic styles.
Crane Siding- Crane is another major vinyl siding manufacturer and offers the Solid Core Insulated siding line, as well as the Premium Pointe, Market Square, American Dream and other traditional siding lines. Their insulated siding is foam-backed and maintenance free like vinyl, but it looks more like wide cedar planks. The insulation makes your home more energy efficient and also helps the product withstand bumps and bruises more easily than traditional vinyl siding products without causing dents. Read more on Crane Siding.
Sears Siding - Sears is a leader in the vinyl siding market and has many options to choose from. You can stop by any store to see the different siding types and colors they offer, as well as to get information about options, installation, and more from their trained staff.
Alcoa Siding - Alcoa is a leader in aluminum siding, which is more often used in commercial buildings, rather than home construction. Aluminum siding is stronger than vinyl, and much stronger than wood, so it is a great option for locations that are subject to a lot of wear and tear, extreme weather conditions, or possible abuse. But, homeowners in general prefer vinyl siding rather than aluminum siding for their homes. Read more on Alcoa Siding.
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New Products May Be The Best Vinyl Siding Option
One drawback of many vinyl siding products is their lack of rigidity. Since vinyl siding is relatively thin and not very solid, it tends to accentuate every dip, bump or uneven area on the exterior of a home. No homes are created completely straight and level and vinyl siding, and even thicker fiber cement siding, tend to run along those dips and ridges and follow them, rather than remaining uniformly straight across the wall. Another problem with vinyl siding products that resemble wood is that they tend to have a curl in each lap, which pretty much gives away the fact that the siding is not real wood.
Newer, foam-backed vinyl siding products solve many of these problems, including insulating a home and making it more energy efficient, thus lowering utility bills. The no-maintenance siding has a solid foam core with an R-value of 4.0 (R-value is the measurement of resistance to heat loss or gain - the higher the value, the more energy efficient the product is). In contrast, traditional vinyl siding, fiber cement siding, and even wood siding, only have an R-value of less than 1.0. The insulated siding product is so energy efficient, in fact, that it is allow to display the prestigious Energy Star label, which is not often found on many siding products.
The added energy efficiency comes not only from the foam core siding itself but how it is installed. The foam core that is laminated to the back of each piece of siding interlocks with the adjacent pieces as it is installed. This interlocking process creates a solid foam barrier across the entire expanse of the exterior walls of your home and insulates your home well. Normally, the way a home is constructed the wall studs, as well as the wall plates at the top and bottom of each wall, break up the insulation of the wall. The insulated siding provides a solid and continuous insulation barrier across the whole wall. This insulated layer not only slows air filtration and makes your home more energy efficient, but it also reduces the amount of noise that can travel through your walls, making your home quieter as well.
Another benefit to the product is that since it has a solid foam core, it lays flat across the exterior walls of a home and does not highlight every bump and dip in the not-so-perfect wall. The foam core also increases the impact resistance of the siding by as much as 300%. That means that it is less likely to sustain any damage if it gets hit by hail, a tree branch blowing in the wind, or even a wayward baseball or golf ball. This feature prevents dents and damage from occurring during the life of the product. This is especially important as the siding ages since it becomes harder to find the siding to replace the damaged piece or the color when replaced winds up slightly off due to the age of the existing siding on the home.
Finding The Best Vinyl Siding Installers
When it is time to replace the vinyl siding on your home, you need to find not only the best vinyl siding product for your home, but a good installer as well. These are two different entities - the product and the installer, although often the installation is offered through the place that you get your vinyl siding products from. The warranty that comes from the manufacturer, however, usually doesn't warrant against any problems with installation or damage that arises due to improper installation, so it is important that you have an installer that is knowledgeable about how to install the particular vinyl siding product that you have chosen. Some companies that sell the vinyl siding product will warrant against installation issues if you have them do the installation, but either way, you want to make sure you have a quality and knowledgeable installer for the job.
When looking for an installer, there are a few factors you need to discuss up front. Ask about their certifications. Many of the major siding manufacturers offer certification programs so that installers know the proper techniques to install their siding.
Find out about their work experience, make sure they are knowledgeable and experienced about the type of siding you are using and any special elements of your home, such as unique roof pitches, trim, home style, etc.
Inquire about their techniques. Will they use a moisture barrier and what type? How will the siding be applied? If you have underlying water or insect damage, will they repair that first or do you need another contractor to do the job? If the siding requires any finish, will they provide that service?
Ask how long the job will take and get installation costs up front. Also find out when they plan to start. Will they clean up the job site when they are finished, or will they leave you with the trash? Find out more pricing information using our vinyl siding cost calculator.
Ask for references. When you contact the people on their reference list, ask them how they liked the job the installer performed, whether they finished on time, if there were any cost overruns, and anything else that may be of importance to you.
Ask about warranties - A professional installer should be willing to offer you an installation siding warranty on the service they provide. If they do, check over the details of the warranty to see what is covered and for how long.
Check with state licensing boards and local or state business associations to see if any complaints have been lodged against the installer you are considering.
Once you have decided on an installation contractor, make sure you receive a detailed contract that lays out all siding costs, the scope of the work to be performed, the length of time the job should take, when the start date is scheduled for or the target completion date, a payment schedule and any other details you and your contractor agree to in relation to the installation job.
Finding the best vinyl siding for your home comes down to choosing the most appropriate siding product that fits your needs and is within your budget, as well as finding a quality contractor that you can trust. Once you have found both of these things, you should feel confident that adding vinyl siding to your home is a smart decision that provides functionality, beauty and energy efficiency and lasts for years.