If you’re looking to install new siding–particularly if you’re considering vinyl shake siding–you may be wondering: how long does vinyl siding last?
Like most building materials (like window frames and roofing shingles), the lifespan of vinyl siding can vary based on a number of factors. However, in most cases, vinyl siding will last 30 to 50 years. And, in some cases, it will last even longer!
No matter what, though, one rule remains: the better you care for your siding, the more use you’ll get out of it. As such, vinyl siding still needs appropriate maintenance on a regular basis in order to last.
Factors That Affect the Lifespan of Shake-Style Vinyl Siding
As previously noted, there are several factors that can affect the lifespan of vinyl shake siding.
Though vinyl siding is highly resistant to harsh weather conditions and extreme temperatures, like everything else, it can still be affected by these factors. If vinyl siding is subjected to heavy rainfall or direct, intense UV rays on a consistent basis, its life expectancy will decrease. Wind-related damage can have a negative effect on how long vinyl siding lasts, as well.
But, keep in mind that all other siding materials are affected by weather, too. In fact, most options (such as wood siding, fiber cement siding and stucco) are affected more severely.
Maintenance & Upkeep
Although vinyl siding is an extremely low-maintenance material, vinyl shake siding isn’t 100% maintenance-free. Generally speaking, it only needs to be cleaned (with a pressure washer) from time to time, which is in stark contrast to a material like wood, which needs to be sealed, cleaned, and painted regularly.
However, if vinyl siding isn’t properly maintained, its lifespan will decrease. For instance, allowing vinyl siding to remain dirty can lead to staining. And, because it shouldn’t be painted, staining is essentially irreversible. If one side of the home gets minimal sunlight, more frequent cleaning is recommended to prevent buildup of mildew.
(By cleaning your vinyl siding regularly, you can prevent it from staining and get the most longevity out of it.)
Quality of Siding Material
Not all vinyl siding is created equal. Some options are tough and durable, meant to last 40 years or more. Others are rather weak and will start to degrade within 20 years.
As such, if you do decide to go with vinyl siding, make sure it’s coming from a reputable manufacturer. Research the manufacturer before making a purchase, and, if possible, read user reviews on the particular siding that you’re considering.
In addition, be on the lookout for a warranty. While the siding manufacturer might not offer a lifetime warranty, most siding companies will offer a warranty of some kind.
Over time, siding can experience all sorts of damage, whether it be from lack of upkeep, poor durability, harsh weather conditions or direct damage, which can reduce the exterior siding‘s lifespan.
If you want your siding to last as long as possible, keep physical damage to a minimum. Trim your trees, play catch away from the house, and do whatever else is necessary to take the strain off of your siding.
What Makes Vinyl Siding So Durable?
You might be wondering what exactly makes vinyl siding so durable? There are a number of things, all of which we’ll discuss below.
The problem with a lot of siding materials is that they’re vulnerable to water damage. For instance, when regularly subjected to moisture, wood siding can warp or rot within a matter of 10 years.
This is not true of vinyl siding. Vinyl is a synthetic material that’s purposefully designed to resist the harmful effects of water. As such, it never warps and never becomes misshapen from direct contact with water.
Sunlight Resistant Capabilities
Not only are many siding materials susceptible to water, but they’re also damaged by sunlight, as well. Like water, sunlight can cause issues like warping and buckling for other types of siding materials.
Vinyl siding, however, is not vulnerable to these issues. Although intense UV exposure may cause fading over the decades, vinyl siding is able to resist the worst effects of sunlight, due to its structural consistency.
Ease of Maintenance
A problem that homeowners have with many types of siding is that their choice of siding requires a great deal of maintenance. As a result, many homeowners fall behind in caring for the exterior of their home, leading to the siding’s premature deterioration.
But, vinyl siding requires almost no maintenance whatsoever. As long as it’s cleaned every 6 to 12 months, it should remain intact, both functionally and aesthetically.
How Do Other Siding Materials Measure Up?
Since we’ve discussed the lifespan and durability shake-style vinyl siding, let’s compare those qualities against other popular siding materials.
Wood Siding & Traditional Wood Shake
Wood siding can last as long as 40 years. However, in order for wood siding to make it that far, it requires a great deal of attention. Not only does wood siding need to be repainted, but it also needs to be cleaned and resealed, as well.
Ask any experienced siding contractor: if you don’t properly care for wood siding, it can show wear in as little as 10 years after installation. (On average, wood siding lasts around 25 years.)
Aluminum siding shares several similarities with vinyl siding. For instance, it’s highly resistant to water, sunlight exposure and temperature changes. As such, it never warps (or rusts, for that matter).
The issue with aluminum siding, though, is that it’s vulnerable to denting.
In most cases, aluminum siding tops out at around 40 years. However, the last 5 to 10 years of its lifespan may have less aesthetic appeal than the initial years after installation.
Another popular choice as a siding option is stone veneer. This particular material can last as long as 75 years, but can be expensive and still requires upkeep.
In most cases, stone veneer provides 20 and 30 years of use, because water can seep through seams, causing issues.
What Are the Other Advantages of Shake-Style Vinyl Siding?
Vinyl shake siding isn’t just durable, it offers a number of other advantages, as well.
It’s Aesthetically Pleasing
One of the biggest advantages of vinyl siding is its curb appeal. Vinyl shake siding offers a great deal of texture, character and dimension.
It’s available in a wide variety of colors, from white and yellow to red, blue and black…and just about everything in between. Regardless of the color you’re looking for, it’s almost sure to be available.
It Adds to the Home’s Insulation
Siding not only needs to protect a home from weather and insects, but it also needs to protect from heat and cold. As such, good insulative properties are important.
Fortunately, vinyl siding fits the bill. Vinyl is one of the most insulative siding materials in existence and does a superb job of blocking both heat and cold. If you’re looking to keep your energy bills to a minimum, vinyl siding is a great material to utilize.
Vinyl is the most popular siding material on the market. There are a number of reasons for that, but perhaps the primary reason is its affordability.
Not only is vinyl siding a great value to buy and to install, but it’s also economical to maintain. Plus, vinyl siding has impressive durability, meaning that it provides maximum bang for its buck.
Looking to Buy Shake-Style Vinyl Siding?
If you’re looking to update your home’s exterior and were wondering how long vinyl siding lasts, you can rest assured that it’s one of the most dependable options on the market.
If you’re taking vinyl siding’s aesthetic appeal one step further and are interested in the look and feel of vinyl shake siding, you’re in the right place! Factory Direct Siding has tons of options for you to choose from.
Whether you want a neutral color or are going for a bright, bold palette, we have you covered. Take a look at our selection today!