I’ll admit: I love browsing home design sites.
Whether it’s saving seasonal decor inspiration or keeping up with kitchen trends, looking at websites is the “right brain” balance to the management work I do at Martin Roofing and Siding.
But sometimes I see a DIY suggestion that, as a home builder? Gives me nightmares. I wanted to share one of those with you today.
I ran into this last week- an article from The Spruce on how to paint your vinyl siding.
Let me explain. We’ve installed more exteriors than ever this year.
Between the rough Pennsylvania weather and folks who, after spending a little more time at home, decide it’s the right time to update- we’ve booked dozens of vinyl siding projects.
That doesn’t mean I don’t love DIY. In fact, hand-on work as a homeowner is one of those joys we love so much…we do it for our own family even after the work day is over. When it comes to bidding a project, Vern is always keen on handy homeowners DIYing parts of their project to save on labor.
That said: There are some DIYs that are definitely a don’t.
Can you paint your vinyl siding? Well, technically yes. Should you? That’s another story.
Why Painting Vinyl is Risky
Fun fixes and DIY improvements are one of the joys of homeownership. We help clients every day customize their home to their lifestyle and personality. That’s a happiness you wouldn’t want to deny anyone.
But when people ask if they can just paint their vinyl siding instead of replacing it…a “red alert” goes off in my mind.
Unlike building out a closet or repainting a bathroom, painting your exterior is no weekend warrior task. If you’ve been following our blog, you already know your siding is a piece of a system that protects your home.
That’s right. Your siding isn’t just a pretty facade to make your home look nice. After your roof, your siding is the most important part of your home’s armor against rain, snow, ice, and wind.
Anything you do to that system, even something that seems as trivial as painting, changes the way that armor works to protect your home’s structure.
So before you run down to the hardware store for a 5 gallon bucket of exterior paint…let’s talk.
Why do you want to paint your vinyl siding?
“I want to paint my siding because it looks dingy, old, or dull.”
If your current siding has lost its luster but you do like the color, I’ve got some great news: It might just need a good scrub.
DIYing an annual clean on your vinyl siding is a great way to bring your home’s exterior back to life. Here’s a quick video showing you the basics:
“I don’t like the color of my siding.”
Looking to paint your vinyl siding to change up the color?
It’s possible. If your siding is new(er) and in good shape, painting might work.
First, two questions:
Will painting void the warranty on your siding?: Before you touch a brush, double check your manufacturer’s warranty. Siding is engineered to last decades without maintenance beyond an annual wash. Once you start applying product to your exterior, you may void the warranty protecting your home.
Is the color you want available?: A few years ago, painting your vinyl siding wouldn’t even be an option for a homeowner. Now, professional paint companies, like Sherwin Williams, do offer paint direct to consumers that can
- Adhere to vinyl siding
- Withstand the weather
- And last up to 10 years.
The problem is this: paint that works for vinyl siding is available in a limited range of color. And it’s not cheap.
Secondly, if you’re looking to paint your siding a darker color than what it is now- you might want to reconsider. Dark colors retain more heat. Your light colored siding might not be engineered to take the added stress.
“My vinyl siding looks worn. I want to paint it to make it look new.”
If it looks worn? It is worn. But replacement- not painting- is the solution.
Painting damaged vinyl siding is a quick fix that leads to quick regret. Cracks, holes, and damage in your vinyl siding mean moisture is getting through to your home’s structural systems.
That’s a problem you can’t count on a coat of paint patching up.
Painting siding to cover up damage is the worst reason to consider this DIY project.
Vinyl siding is engineered to expand and contract with heat and cold. When you use paint to ‘fix’ even the tiniest breaks in your home’s armor, they won’t stay fixed for long. Weather changes cause vinyl to “move” and pull paint apart.
Unfortunately, most homeowners just don’t know how important their siding is to protecting their home’s structure, interior, and even their indoor air quality.
Keeping water out is the first step in preventing mold and keeping your family free from Sick Building Syndrome. With as much time as your family spends indoors during the winter, painting your damaged siding isn’t worth the risk.
“All right…I shouldn’t paint my vinyl siding. What now?” -You
You want to give your home’s exterior an update. But committing to a full siding replacement? Maybe that was a little more than you were expecting when you started asking Google about painting your house.
I’ll be honest: making a major change to your home’s exterior isn’t a DIY project for the faint of heart. But with a professional? It can be easier- and less expensive- than you think.
If your siding is damaged replacing it now will prevent major repairs to your home’s structure and interior. You won’t just be getting the curb appeal, you’ll be protecting the value of your biggest asset.
What about if your home’s exterior just doesn’t match your personality? What if you want a refresh for more for aesthetics? There’s nothing wrong with that! But consulting with a pro can get you better results for your money than a DIY paint job.
When you work with someone like my husband Vern and his team, they go beyond “pick a siding and be done”. Because he specializes in full exterior work- we can open up options for your home beyond a change in siding color.
More Than Siding Contractors: What Martin Can Do For Your Home.
Maybe you want to DIY because you don’t think anyone could care about your home as much as you do. If so- you should call my husband Vern.
At Martin, we’re more than roofing and siding contractors. We bring your dream home to life by offering you so much more than a “get it in and get out” type of company.
#1. Options Beyond Color: If your siding is in great shape, maybe you don’t need to change it to give your home a fresh look. Our team can install a full range of exteriors and we love tackling mixed-materials projects. Check out this inspiration post to see some spectacular before and afters to spark your creativity.
#2. Priced to Fit Your Budget: Was painting on your mind because you wanted a cost-friendly way to change the look of your home?
What if you could keep your home protected, get the look you want, AND not spend weekends out on a ladder scrubbing and painting the side of your home? Sign me up!
We offer a wide range of colors and styles- all professionally installed by our talented crew. All of our estimates come with a “good, better, best” option so you can choose the price point that fits you.
#3. Software To Help You Visualize The Big Picture: Once you’ve narrowed down what you like, we upload a photo of your home into our professional visualization software and show you what your choices look like on your home in real time!
No holding up tiny swatches to your house and hoping you get it right. See what our visualization software looks like in action here.
Want to see what your options are? Give us a call at 570-345-0406 or schedule an estimate here. We would be thrilled to help you turn your home into your dream home.
Until next time,
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