Ask Angie: Tips for replacing vinyl and aluminum siding
Many homeowners choose vinyl siding due to its low cost and minimal upkeep.
Dear Angie: Hail damaged two sides of our home and our insurance company agreed to only pay to replace the two damaged sides. However, our current siding is more than 20 years old and made of aluminum. I feel it will be impossible to match. One contractor told us we should plan to reside the entire home and suggests vinyl, because it is less expensive than aluminum.
We’re not certain we can finance the extra out-of-pocket cost for this project. Is it possible to replace the two damaged sides with new siding and then return at a later date to replace the other two sides, or should we just bite the bullet and plan to fund the entire replacement at one time? – Linda C., Granite City, Ill.
Dear Linda: It is possible to replace just the two damaged sides now and the other sides later, but it’s definitely not the ideal solution. I recommend you first check around with some reputable siding companies to see if they can match your existing siding. Most companies should offer to remove a sample of the existing siding and take it to their supplier to match it up.
Given that your siding is aluminum and more than 20 years old, that’s probably going to be a tough task. That might actually be a good thing, though. If the siding company is not able to match your existing siding, they should be able to provide you with a report stating such. You could then submit this report with a supplemental claim to your insurance company and request they replace all the siding on the house. A claim supplement most commonly occurs after a claim has been paid, but additional damage is found or unforeseen expenses occur. It’s not uncommon for insurance companies to pay to replace all of the siding if a match is not available. However, it’s important to discuss your coverage with your agent and explore all the options available to you.
If your insurance still won’t cover the other two sides, you could replace the damaged siding with vinyl siding, which offers a more modern look and costs less than aluminum, and replace the other two sides later. The challenge would lie in transitioning between the two different types of siding. Making them look the same will likely be impossible.
You could replace the damaged siding with an aluminum product as similar to yours as possible and still replace the other two sides later. You’ll still have difficulty making a perfect match, but the difference in appearance might not be as noticeable. Of course, going with aluminum means you’ll likely be paying more as well.
Ultimately, the challenge with replacing only the two sides is that, if you wait another year or two and replace them with the exact same siding, you’ll likely still face issues with the siding not matching entirely due to the newer siding fading. Though some siding manufacturers offer a “fade guarantee,” that typically means that they are either guaranteeing the siding will fade evenly over time or only after a certain amount of time. Your best option is to replace the entire house when you can afford to, so it has a uniform appearance all the way around.
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