research roofing research roofing
 

All About Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is by far the most popular replacement siding on the market today.  There is absolutely no shortage of choices.  With nearly every color available and a great many different profiles you can match most any vintage style with a vinyl equivalent. 

Don't be fooled:  There are a lot of "good looking" products manufactured that you should never put on your home and we try to cover what makes a decent siding below.  Among the top factors are;

  • Thickness
  • Material Composition
  • Color Process
  • Design Strengths / Weakness

To be as impartial as possible we are going to try and give you a good guide for how to judge the quality of vinyl siding you are looking at.  Also, below you'll find important things like, profile, exposures, and many different styles.

 

 

What make vinyl siding "good" quality

OK, with all the options out there it is hard to tell by looking at it what make a "good siding"  so for the purpose of evaluating the siding available we'll explain the 4 key points on which to judge vinyl siding.

Thickness

Measured in "mils" or millimeters  it is the first statistic to look for when determining quality.

.035 .038 .040 .042 .044 .046 .050 .055
Absolute Junk Super Economy Contractors Starting Point Mid Entry Level Our Minimum Recommendation Premium Product Ultra Premium CRAZY Good

Material Composition:

Not all Vinyl is created created equally and the composition of the product helps contribute to it's strength, longevity, UV performance and rigidity.  So do a little digging and look into how the product is made.

  • Regrind:  This is usually the least expensive - the color is not all the way through the vinyl but painted on the front.  Sometimes referred to as "grayback"  the backside is gray while the front is finished. Essentially old ground of plastic melted down and re purposed.
  • PVC Recycled:  A more pure form of regrind made from only pure PVC products then repurposed
  • Virgin PVC:  The purest form of PVC or Poly Vinyl Chloride - at least get this.  Products made with virgin PVC are much more stable
  • Virgin PVC + additives;  Year ago manufacturers realized they could increase the performance of the old vinyl by adding UV stabilizes, hardeners and other chemicals.  Particular brands have their own special blend.
  • Acrylic Capped Vinyl; A newer age product utilizing acrylic at the core with a vinyl exterior.

Color Process:

Every brand of vinyl siding has their distinct color process and it's success or failure is a KEY indicator or the quality of siding.  Why:  because the best companies have a great warranty to reduce fade.  Remember why you are making the investment to replace what's there and make it look good for a long time.  Nothing is worse then finding out what you thought looked good today ends up fading the drab and boring tomorrow.

  1. You certainly want a product that has the color all the way through.  Check the backside and even make a test cut if need be.
  2. Titanium Dioxide = A PROVEN chemical in stopping UV(ultraviolet) degradation in a wide variety of materials
  3. Excellent Pigments - The quality of pigments and concentrates going into the vinyl have a huge impact on how well the color holds up.

Design Strengths / Weakness

Some things we like to see in the strongest of sidings.

Rolled Nailing Hem Impact Modifiers Integrated Insulation Double Locking Point
Produces a much stronger attachment point to the home. Enhances the ability to withstand impacts without braking or cracking While increasing efficiency, also strengthens and adds rigidity to product. Helps Line Up Panels, Increases strength.

 

Vinyl Siding Profiles

What profiles are available in Vinyl Siding?

The traditional profiles are still the most popular and we cover them here,,,

All of the choices below come in multiple exposure sizes.  The most common is D-4 or double 4" which simply mean that each panel is composed of two formed 4" exposure sections joined together the other popular sizes are as follows: 

S=Single, D= Double - The numbers correlate to inches

  • D-5, D 5.5
  • Triple 3" (An older look of three 3" sections)
  • D4, D 4.5
  • S-6, S-7, S-8
DutchLap / Shiplap
Clapboard
Beaded
Board and Batten

Vinyl Siding Alternative Styles

They make just about everything about of plastic now and so can they when it comes to putting in on your home.

EVERYTHING BELOW IS VINYL

CabinBoard(Log Profile)
Shake
Scallops
Stone
Brick