By Mike Merisko
For the last 20 years vinyl siding has been the exterior finish of choice, ahead of wood, aluminum, and steel. Besides being virtually maintenance free, it is also chosen for its colors, style choices and durability.
Many of the myths about vinyl siding stem from its early years when cracking, fading, and buckling were part of its characteristics. Technology quickly caught up with these faults and made it a more viable product for an exterior finish.
Another false read that people may have gotten about vinyl siding is seeing a poor installation on a new or re-sided house. Installers not knowledgeable or not following the manufacturers recommended installation instructions could produce a poor job making one think its typical of all vinyl siding jobs.
One of the most common mistakes made when installing vinyl siding is not allowing room for expansion. During warm weather a 12 foot panel can expand up to 1/2 inch. Because of this, the siding is installed 1/4 to 3/8 of an inch short of J-channels and corners depending on the temperature its installed in.