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vinyl siding on house



When installed correctly, a siding installation can last several decades, so it’s important to get the details right. All siding should have a vapor barrier between it and the sheathing to ensure water will run down and away from the house if it gets behind the siding.


Having a space between the siding and the moisture barrier is ideal as well. This allows the siding to breathe. Another important detail, which most contractors miss, is making sure all end grains of wood or cement are primed prior to the installation. Most contractors miss this important detail, and unfortunately, the end-grains are where rot appears first.


Different Styles of Siding

You can choose between different looks, like clapboard, shingles or board and batten, and your choices for materials include wood, vinyl or cement siding. Each has its own pros and cons.


Wood – Most Vermonters like cedar, redwood, pine, spruce or mahogany because they have a natural, authentic look to them. The downside is that wood siding requires regular maintenance, like painting or staining. The cost can vary from $2 to $8 per square foot (material only). Installing wood siding is a time consuming process and the labor can cost between $6 to $12 per square foot.


Cement – If you go with cement your choices will be a clapboard or shingle style. It is available in a smooth finish or a wood texture look. The greatest advantage of cement is its durability. It is practically bullet proof and quite affordable.


The downside is that it cannot be sanded or stained, only painted, and it will require re-painting just like wood siding. Cement is also susceptible to vapor from direct appliance vents like gas heaters. If the siding starts to break down from lack of maintenance, it will likely need replacing. Wood, on the other hand, can often be brought back to life after sanding. The cost for cement siding is $2 to $4 per square foot (material only). The labor cost is the same as wood, around $6 to $12 per square foot.


Vinyl – This siding is the least expensive and comes with many style options that include clapboard, shingle, or board and batten. Vinyl siding is low maintenance, which is a huge advantage. You’ll never have to get up on a ladder to scrape and paint, although you will need to wash it every few years.


The drawbacks are aesthetics and hiding problems – vinyl just doesn’t have the same authentic feel that wood does – and it has a reputation for hiding moisture issues. If water is getting under the siding, it’s hard to see the problem until you’ve got major damage on your hands.

Realtors love to claim that a house has “maintenance free vinyl siding,” but beware. Many home buyers have nightmare stories about purchasing a good looking home, only to discover rot underneath the vinyl siding. Building inspectors should remove portions of the siding during an inspection, but sadly most do not take that step, leaving the homeowner vulnerable.


The cost of vinyl is $2.50 to $5 per square foot (material only). Installation costs can be from $3 per square foot to $6 per square foot. There will also be additional costs for the removal and disposal of the old siding, which can run from $2.50 to $4 per square foot.


We can install or repair any type of siding you like. It all depends on your personal taste and budget, but whatever style you choose, we will make sure it looks as beautiful as you imagined.