The Pros And Cons Of Vinyl Siding: What You Need To Know

Beautiful home exterior with white siding.

Are you considering vinyl siding for your home? Are you wondering what the benefits and drawbacks are for this popular siding material? If you’re thinking about installing vinyl siding for your home, it’s essential to understand both the pros and cons associated with this type of siding material. This blog post will take an unbiased look at the advantages and disadvantages of vinyl siding, so you can make an informed choice when deciding if it is right for your home.

The Pros And Cons Of Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is one of the most popular types of home siding today, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for everyone. Before making a decision about what type of siding you’ll use to protect your home from the elements, consider the advantages and disadvantages that come along with vinyl siding. 

Let’s start by looking at the pros of vinyl siding.

Pros Of Vinyl Siding

siding covering the wall of a house under construction

When considering home exterior siding, most homeowners are turning to vinyl for its numerous benefits. Let’s explore why this is a popular choice for today’s homes. 

Less Expensive Than Other Materials

One of the major pros of vinyl siding is that it is more cost-effective than other siding materials. It is much less expensive than real wood, which makes it an appealing option if you are looking to save money on your home renovation project.

Vinyl siding is composed of lightweight siding panels that lock together, which means they can be installed faster and easier than most other types of siding. And since it does not require painting, you also save on labor costs associated with painting your siding. All of these factors can lead to major cost savings in the long run.

Low-Maintenance

Vinyl siding is also very low maintenance, making it ideal for busy homeowners who don’t have time to worry about their home’s exterior. Vinyl requires very little upkeep and can easily be washed clean with a hose if it gets dust or dirt on it. Vinyl is also highly resistant to water damage and will last longer than other types of siding materials, such as wood, which means fewer water-related repairs down the line.

More Easily Repaired (By A Professional)

Vinyl siding is durable and can withstand a lot of wear and tear, but even the best vinyl siding can still get damaged at times. Fortunately, when it does, it’s easy to repair with the help of professional contractors.

Unlike brick, wood, or metal siding, which require more specialized tools to repair, vinyl siding can usually be quickly fixed by replacing the affected area with a new vinyl board. This makes it a great choice if you want low-maintenance siding that can last for years without requiring much upkeep or repairs. 

Long Lasting

Vinyl siding is designed to last for many years and can withstand weather conditions without fading or cracking over time. It also resists warping, buckling, and other damage that could occur over time due to exposure to the elements. This means that once you install vinyl siding on your home, you won’t have to worry about replacing it anytime soon.

Many Color Choices

vinyl siding samples

Vinyl also comes in many different colors, so you can choose something that fits your style and taste perfectly. You can find everything from classic beiges and whites to bold reds and blues, depending on what look you’re going for. No matter what look you’re going for, there’s sure to be a color option that works for your home. If you need help choosing a vinyl siding color, be sure to check out our recommendations for vinyl siding colors you’ll love.

No Painting Needed

One of the best things about vinyl siding is that it doesn’t need to be painted every few years like wood or metal siding does in order to keep its original look intact. Unlike other siding types that have a color coating, the color of the vinyl is homogenous throughout the material. Another bonus for those looking to save on labor costs when installing their new siding. 

Can Look Like Real Wood

There are some varieties of vinyl that mimic the look of real wood if that is something you are interested in achieving without the hefty price tag. Vinyl also usually comes in more color options than what is available for wood, so you have more choices when trying to find a color that best fits your home’s style. Faux-wood vinyl siding gives you all the benefits of wood without having to do regular upkeep like staining or painting every few years.

Water Resistant Material

Another pro of using vinyl as your home’s exterior material is its resistance to water damage. Unlike wood which can warp over time due to exposure to moisture, vinyl won’t rot or become damaged by water as easily since it doesn’t absorb moisture as wood does. This makes it an especially attractive option for homes located in areas where there are high levels of humidity or rain throughout the year.

Cons Of Vinyl Siding

Now let’s take a look at the cons of using vinyl siding on your home. 

Needs Proper Installation

A worker installs panels beige siding on the facade

Vinyl siding must be properly installed in order to look good and last as long as possible. This means that you need to hire a professional installer who knows how to install the panels correctly and make sure that they are sealed tightly.

Otherwise, there is potential for moisture to get behind the panels, which can lead to mold or rot in the wall sheathing underneath. While any type of siding benefits from professional installation, there are several quirks to vinyl siding that make it crucial to get it installed correctly.

May Lessen Your Home’s Value

While installing vinyl siding can certainly increase your home’s curb appeal, it may not add significant value to your house when it comes time for an appraisal or sale. This is because many homebuyers perceive it as a low-end material (even if it looks great). If you choose not to use high-quality materials or hire a reputable contractor to do the work, vinyl siding may cause more damage than good when it comes time for buyers to look at your house. 

Potential Maintenance Issues

Like any home exterior material, vinyl siding requires regular maintenance in order to keep it looking its best. This could include power washing or cleaning with special solutions on a seasonal basis in order for dirt and debris not to accumulate on the surface of the panels.

If any sections become damaged due to weather or other causes, they will need to be immediately replaced so that water won’t seep through them and cause further damage elsewhere in your home. Since vinyl doesn’t breathe, any water that gets behind the vinyl may get trapped and lead to mold or mildew growth.

Less Durable Than Other Materials

Vinyl is less durable than other materials, such as wood or aluminum siding, when it comes to extreme weather conditions like hail storms or strong winds. It is also prone to cracking over time due to temperature fluctuations or general wear and tear from everyday use. This means that you might need replacement sections sooner than expected, which could add up quickly depending on how much of your home is covered by the siding material. 

Environmentally Unfriendly

Most vinyl siding products are made from petroleum-based plastic, which makes them non-biodegradable and thus bad for the environment if disposed of improperly.

Producing them also creates greenhouse gases, which contribute to global warming. Make sure you recycle any vinyl siding pieces you replace, so they don’t end up in landfills or waterways. 

Color Fading

Vinyl siding is designed to be fade-resistant and may look great when it’s first installed, but it can fade after prolonged exposure to UV rays from the sun. Depending on your climate, this could happen within a few years after installation. You can minimize fading by opting for lighter colors and installing awnings over windows that get direct sunlight all day long. 

Difficult To Touch Up The Color

If your siding does fade or become damaged over time, you may find it difficult to touch up with paint or other treatments because the material is porous and absorbs liquids quickly–which means any paint will likely just bleed through instead of sticking and providing coverage where needed. If you do decide to repaint your vinyl siding yourself, make sure you use an oil-based paint specifically designed for this purpose so that it adheres properly. 

Moisture Can Get Behind The Panels

Cleaning the mold from the vinyl siding on this exterior wall

Vinyl siding is designed with panels that overlap each other slightly so that moisture won’t be able to get in between them—but if those panels aren’t properly sealed when they’re first installed (or if they become unsealed over time), water could seep into the seams and cause rot or mold growth inside your walls if left unchecked. This could lead to costly repairs down the line, so make sure your installer seals all edges properly during installation. You should also regularly inspect vinyl siding for signs of water damage if you suspect moisture is getting behind the panels. 

Low Heat And Cold Resistance

Vinyl siding has a low resistance to both heat and cold temperatures which means it can expand and contract significantly depending on how hot/cold it gets outside (and how much direct sunlight it receives). This can lead to warping or buckling over time which will require costly repairs to fix–so make sure you install insulation along with your vinyl siding if you live in an area with extreme temperatures throughout the year.

Poor Insulator

While vinyl does provide some insulation benefits due to its natural properties (it helps keep air from escaping through small cracks), overall, its R-value (a measure of thermal resistance) isn’t very high. This means that without additional insulation installed beneath its surface, your home won’t stay warm in winter or cool in summer as effectively as it would with other materials. That being said, installing insulation along with vinyl siding is standard practice for most cases.

Get Your Vinyl Siding Installed Correctly With The Pros At Urban Exteriors

As you can see, there are many advantages to using vinyl siding on your home’s exterior–from its low-maintenance care requirements to its resistance against water damage. However, there are still some drawbacks that should be taken into consideration before making a final decision about what type of material would best suit your needs and budget.

If you’re considering investing in new siding for your house, Urban Exteriors can help. Just fill out our contact form today, and one of our experts will be more than happy to discuss siding options with you and help you make the best decision for your home.