As your home’s first layer of defense against the elements, your siding can take a beating. Storm and sunlight damage can change the look or functionality of your siding. In some cases, minor siding damage can be repaired or even simply overlooked.
However, major siding repairs can affect your entire home. So how do you know when it’s time to invest in new siding? Look for the following 14 signs.
Bubbles occur when moisture becomes trapped beneath your siding. Whether you notice many small bubbles or a single large bulge, your siding has likely already sustained significant water damage.
When siding begins to buckle, whether the damage pushes the material outward or allows it to collapse inward, there’s usually an issue with the boards underneath. You may need to replace the underlayment as well as the siding to restore the shape of your exterior walls.
Cracked siding can happen due to impact damage or stress over time. If the cracking is confined to a single section, you may only need to replace the affected area. However, if the cracks have allowed moisture to seep beneath the siding, the damage could be much more extensive.
4. Excessive Fading
You want your siding to retain a rich, beautiful color that makes your home stand out. When your siding fades dramatically, the discoloration can indicate that your siding is reaching the end of its life expectancy. Excessive fading often accompanies other problems on this list, requiring replacement.
5. High Energy Costs
If your heating and cooling costs are much higher now than they were a few years ago, your siding may be to blame. Have a home exterior expert check your siding, attic insulation, and other potential causes of high energy costs to determine the best possible solution.
Holes in siding often occur due to insect infestations, which we’ll discuss in more detail in the next section. Whatever the cause or size of a hole, however, the opening can encourage water intrusion, fungal growth, and other serious issues. You will need to replace the section with the hole and you may need to replace other affected sections as well.
Wildlife of all varieties can threaten the structural integrity of your siding. Insects and rodents may break through the siding to make nests underneath it. These openings also encourage secondary infestations like bees, wasps, and other stinging insects. Larger pests, like woodpeckers and squirrels, may also cause pitting, dents, or holes in the siding.
If you notice animal damage, take care of the infestation and then replace the compromised siding with a pest-resistant material to prevent future problems.
8. Interior Moisture Damage
Not all siding damage is visible from outside your home. Extensive water damage may create stains on your interior walls or cause your paint and wallpaper to peel.
9. Loose Sections
Siding can become loose due to high winds or corroded fasteners. A single loose section may be a quick fix, but if the interface underneath the siding has also sustained damage, you may need to replace all of the layers.
The texture of some siding materials can change over time, especially when exposed to large amounts of direct sunlight. The siding may peel or become chalky. Not only is this type of damage unsightly but it can also make the siding more vulnerable to other types of damage.
11. Pulling Seams
When the seams of your siding begin to separate, the movement exposes the interface to damage. Pulling seams can happen when the siding ages or due to improper installation. Large amounts of seam movement may require the siding to be removed and reinstalled to correct the issue. Older siding must be replaced completely.
Dry rot can appear underneath your siding, eating away at the interface and inside of the siding without affecting the overall appearance. Have your siding inspected regularly to ensure early detection and treatment of dry rot.
13. Storm Damage
Severe storms can create weaknesses in your siding. If you notice extensive chipping from hail or shifting due to wind, you may need a stronger siding material to protect your home.
14. Unwanted Organic Growth
In addition to dry rot, siding can become vulnerable to certain fungi and mold species. If this organic growth appears underneath the siding as well as on top of it, you may need to remediate the mold problem and replace the siding.
Watch for these warning signs of failing siding to protect your home from the negative effects of damaged or inadequate siding.
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