Getting new siding is a major investment, so you want to make sure there are no other options. The following can help you determine whether you should repair or replace your home's siding.
Popped screws, missing siding clips, loose corner caps -- these types of damages can seem minor, but they can lead to big issues. Missing clips and loose screws result in loose siding panels that are more likely to become damaged in a storm. Further, all of these problems can lead to moisture seeping behind the siding, which can lead to rot on the walls of your home. Fortunately, a few pieces of missing or damaged hardware don't mean you need new siding. These problems are generally repairable.
Vinyl panels are more prone to warping than other materials, although wood will sometimes warp if moisture damage has occurred. When wood warps, rot is often an underlying issue and you will need to replace your siding. Minor vinyl warping may only be an aesthetic issue, but major warping can allow water behind the panel. If only one or two panels are warped, you can simply have them replaced. More extensive damage will require new vinyl siding.
Punctures and Cracks
Punctures and cracks are other issues that primarily affect vinyl but may sometimes occur on wood. The cause is usually blunt force, such as from debris blowing in a storm or damage from a hard object. Patching is possible on both vinyl and wood, although vinyl patches are typically more obvious than wood patches. A better option on vinyl is to replace the damaged siding panel. With wood, you can patch the panel and then repaint the siding so the repair is invisible.
Mold and Rot
Rot is typically only an issue on wood siding. Moisture is the cause of the problem. Generally, moisture soaks into a wood siding panel when something happens to compromise the exterior stain or paint seal. This can happen due to damage or simply the aging of the paint. You can avoid rot concerns by repainting any damaged areas immediately and painting the entire house when the old paint begins to fade or peel. The affected siding must be replaced once rot occurs.
Fading can affect any siding material. Wood and metal sidings can easily be repainted when the old paint job begins to look a bit shoddy, but vinyl is more difficult to paint. There are some vinyl paint products on the market, but their performance isn't always the best. Fortunately, it can take many years before vinyl begins to fade, so it is likely going to be due for a replacement at this time anyway.
Contact a siding repair and replacement service for more assistance.