Wood Siding vs. Vinyl Siding
The way that your siding looks and performs has a tremendous impact on the rest of your property. From curb appeal to protection from the elements, siding has an important role to play on any home. That may be why so many homeowners are constantly searching for the right type of siding for their homes, and comparing wood siding vs vinyl siding as they make their final choice.
Finding a low maintenance, attractive and durable siding may feel like a challenge, especially when considering the attributes of vinyl siding vs wood. And while some people may think that vinyl siding fits the bill, it’s materials like modified wood that really excel.
Style and Appearance
While everyone ideally wants a low maintenance option for their home, the first thing that most people end up considering when looking at vinyl siding vs wood, however, is the appearance of the siding and how it will make their home look. After all, siding covers the majority of your home’s exterior, and it needs to complement your property to set the right style and tone for your curb appeal.
Vinyl siding is available in a wide range of colors and styles, however the amount of fading you’ll experience is difficult to forecast. Once vinyl siding has faded, painting isn’t really an option. There are paint brands that claim to have a formula that sticks to vinyl, but the reality is often different than the sales pitch and there are hundreds of heartbreaking photographs online where homeowners tried to paint vinyl and now have an entirely warped and ruined exterior.
Authenticity is also a common complaint of vinyl siding. With so many homeowners seeking a rich, natural appearance, the faux wood grain of vinyl is often disappointing. Many comment that while vinyl tries, it still looks “plasticy” and falls short of the authentic beauty of real wood.
Modified wood siding, is real wood, with all the appearance and beauty associated with that. It can be left natural, painted or sealed if desired, giving homeowners many different options for the lasting appearance they want. Left in its natural state, the deep brown color of modified wood will gracefully weather, developing a silvery gray patina, that is highly sought after by architects and homeowners alike.
Finally, when it comes to flexibility in design modified wood unarguably takes the cake. Vinyl siding can be found in a few different styles, however the panels can really only be used for siding. Modified wood, on the other hand, is a very versatile product and can be used for much more than just siding. In addition to siding, many homeowners use modified wood as decking or material to build add ons like flower boxes and outdoor furniture, which helps create a cohesive and well coordinated style for your home.
Maintenance and Durability
When it comes to the maintenance and durability of both vinyl and modified wood siding, there seem to be a few misconceptions, so allow us to clear a few things up.
Many believe vinyl siding to be a maintenance free option and it’s easier to see why one might buy into this notion. Vinyl comes colored, so theoretically shouldn’t fade, and as a plastic product, is resistant to things like insect activity and mold. However, there are many things that aren’t said at the point of sale that might drastically change your opinion.
Like previously mentioned, when the color of your vinyl siding does fade, painting is a risky and often unsuccessful option. So if at any point after installation you become unhappy with the color, there really isn’t a great maintenance option you could choose to breathe new life into your home’s exterior.
Vinyl also does not hold up well in various weather conditions. In cold weather vinyl becomes very brittle and can easily crack. If your vinyl does crack, due to cold weather or something else like a power washer or being hit by a baseball, this exposes your substrate to moisture and insects which can cause irreparable damage. In hot climates, vinyl softens which can lead to melting and warping. Once something has caused your vinyl to dent, warp or shift it’s almost impossible to return it to its original shape. If any of these things do cause damage, replacing siding panels can be difficult, costly and very hard to match the color of your existing siding.
A common hesitation with wood siding is that it may be more susceptible to mold and insect activity as an organic product, however this argument doesn’t hold up with modified wood. Modified wood is impregnated with a bio-based liquid that makes it highly resistant to fungi, rot and any other wood destroying micro-organisms. It also thickens the wood cell walls by 50 percent, making modified wood a hard and very durable siding choice.
Furthermore, modified wood isn’t affected by hot or cold weather conditions and also doesn’t require any additional maintenance beyond occasional cleaning. It can be left to weather naturally or coated with UV protection finish to maintain its brown hue. And if you ever decide you want to change the color, you can paint modified wood should you ever so choose.
Green building and eco-friendly materials are an important consideration to make when choosing wood siding vs vinyl. Vinyl siding is a plastic that most recycling centers do not accept, so when disposing of leftover material or re-siding your home, the old siding will most likely need to be disposed of in a landfill where it will not decompose for years.
Modified wood siding is made of real wood that’s been modified with an organic, bio-based liquid. It’s non-toxic, contains no VOCs and can be disposed of like any other wood. Made from sustainable softwoods, modified wood siding has a much lower impact on the environment than vinyl both in production and at time of disposal.
Vinyl siding also contains chemicals that if burned, release toxins into the air, making a house fire even more dangerous for homeowners and detrimental to the environment.
Make a Better Choice
If you’re looking for a truly low maintenance, durable and attractive option for your home’s siding, make the right choice with modified wood. While vinyl is often sold as a lower maintenance alternative to wood siding there are many holes in that argument, generally exposed over the years after installation. Modified wood gives you a truly durable exterior that will last, with all the beauty and character of real wood. Create a home rich in beauty and built to last with modified wood siding.