Vinyl siding options: chat with Bob Vila

Posted by Woodrow Aames ~ June 21, 2011

Discussing vinyl siding is a lot like bringing up politics or religion at a family gathering. You're sure to get an earful of conflicting opinions. I'll say this: if vinyl siding isn't in your home improvement conversation, it ought to be. The material has become the first choice among an estimated 32 percent of the home improvement marketplace. It's been around since the early 1950s and today's vinyl siding is decidedly NOT your father's vinyl siding.

Ask Bob Vila about siding

The material has gained such popularity that siding is part of home improvement guru Bob Vila's topic Thursday for a Twitter chat. The live chat, focusing on home exterior options, takes place June 23 at 10 AM Pacific time/1 PM Eastern time. You can participate or just look in by visiting http://twitter.com/#!/vinylsidingzone and http://twitter.com/#!/bobvila. Click on the "+Follow" button. For you active tweeters, use the #GetReadyThurs hash tag.

With the price of wood on the increase and ongoing hurricanes in the American Southeast, the cost/demand rates for wood siding products may rise above your budget. And the ease of maintenance for vinyl siding can make it an obvious alternative exterior. Check out the installation and materials estimates at Vinyl Siding Zone.

Is installing vinyl siding a do-it-yourself home improvement project?

Hardly, unless you have extensive experience handling the materials and aligning them properly. A siding contractor can cut, fit and hang the product according to manufacturer's specifications. Do it wrong on your own and you could just void the warranty.

If the siding is installed correctly in the first place, you can take on minor repairs or small replacement projects. According to the folks at Repair-Home, you should only attempt the job if you have replacement panels left over from the initial installation or the exact match from the manufacturer.

You'll need a zipper tool to remove the damaged panel and pry out the original nails that hold it in place. Cut the replacement to slightly overlap the gap area so you can lock it to the remaining panels.

What does new siding run? Check out the installation and materials estimates at Vinyl Siding Zone. It's a great way to start researching the job. And you can ask Bob your questions at the Tweet chat!

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