Siding is an important part of your home. Not only is it one of the first things your neighbors, guests, and eventual buyers will see, it’s an important line of defense for your home’s interior and structure. How often should you check the condition of your siding and what should you look for?
How Often Should You Check Your Siding?
First, siding is an important investment, and if well cared for, can last 20-40 years. It will need periodic repairs, repainting, resealing, and patching every few years. It is best to catch any problems early, while these repairs are minor. You should set a reminder to inspect your siding every six months and make a point to do a walk around for damage after every big storm.
Inside the Home
Some may be surprised to learn you can see signs of a siding problem inside your house. If you notice any blistering paint, lose or bubbled wallpaper, or mold or mildew on your interior walls, it’s possible your siding is letting moisture in. You should keep an eye on your electric and gas bills – a sudden spike in gas or electricity consumption for heating or cooling can indicate that something is amiss on your exterior.
Outside the Home
Next, you should do a walk around the exterior. Look for any areas of dark or “dusty” wood – this can indicate that the wood is being penetrated by water. Next, note any parts of your siding that are warped, cracking, or pulling away from the walls of your house. Missing nails that have popped out as the house has aged and settled can open gaps. These are all ways that the elements can get into your house.
Also, pay attention to animals and insects around your house. Woodpeckers can do surprising amounts of damage indicate that you have insects, like termites, inside the siding. Look for any swarms of insects lingering around your house. If you see swarms hanging out in a specific spot, they may have a nest inside your siding.
How to Assess the Damage
You may have caught the rot or damage early, while it’s still only at the surface, or it may extend deeper. If any of the underlayers are exposed, try poking it with a screwdriver to see if it is also damaged. If you’re in doubt about the extent of the damage, err on the side of caution and reach out. At Husker Hammer, we will provide a free inspection. If the problem is confined to a single loose board or small hole, you may wish to patch or replace it yourself. For anything more extensive, it may be time to call the professionals. And, if you have a termite problem, you will want an exterminator involved.
Make sure to document all the damage with your camera – this will both help the contractor with their estimate process and allow you to make an insurance claim, if applicable.
Are you concerned that your siding has been damaged or is in need of repair? Contact us for a free estimate at (402)-894-9525 or reach out to us here.