When it comes to home improvement projects, we have to make a decision. Sometimes it’s easy to fix something or paint it a different color. Other times it’s a good idea to completely replace the old or dysfunctional part of the house. Usually, when we make these choices, it depends on the cost and the ease of replacing or repairing it.

Today, we’re taking a look at siding. Is it better to paint existing aluminum siding or just replace it?

What Causes Damage to Aluminum Siding?

It’s important to be aware of what could be causing damage to any part of your home. In some cases, this can prevent you from having to spend extra money on repairs.

Most repairs for aluminum siding requires more than paint. For these types of damage, replacement might be required. Some of these common issues include:

  • Hail damage
  • Wind damage
  • Natural fading

Why Else Might You Repair or Replace Siding?

If your siding isn’t looking so hot, it might be time to replace it. The color could be fading. Perhaps the paint is chipping. This might happen if your house is older. Harsh weather can put some wear on siding as well, which can cause paint issues. Paint can naturally fade over time too.

There are a few common reasons that people choose to repair or replace their current siding. Sometimes this is simply to update the look of their home. This could be the case if it’s an older home with an outdated color. Sometimes people just want to change things up as well.

When you’re working on changing things up, you should look at your options. You have the choice to either repaint the existing siding or replace it completely.

What is the Difference Between Aluminum Siding and Vinyl Siding?

According to Do It Yourself, “Vinyl siding is an extruded plastic material. It usually ranges in thickness from .040 – .046. Aluminum siding is a formed material, typically .019″ thick. Vinyl siding has a solid color, while aluminum siding has a baked on enamel paint finish.”

Vinyl siding already has the color added to it. This makes it less likely to show wear or scratches. Aluminum siding may show marks and scrapes more easily. One upside to aluminum is that it can be painted if you did choose to upgrade it. Vinyl siding should not be painted.

Aluminum siding is generally used as trim on vinyl siding. Aluminum may still be used to completely cover a home, but vinyl is much more popular.

Both aluminum and vinyl siding are susceptible to cracking. Neither one is great at preventing hail damage. In most cases, vinyl is the better option!

How Much Does Each Process Cost?

Aluminum Siding
To paint aluminum siding, there are just a few steps involved. According to BRS Custom Painting, a professional St. Louis painter, you should clean, dry, scrape and sand, and then paint the siding.

You might already have a pressure washer at your home. You can also rent one from a home improvement store for up to $100 per day, depending on the area. After washing the siding, you will want to let it air dry. Use a sander to scrape off any peeling paint.

Finally, you will have to paint the entire surface. This could be costly, depending on how many coats of paint you need. It will also vary based on the size of your home. A gallon of decent exterior paint covers 300-400 square feet. Each gallon costs around $30-50.

If you choose to hire someone, you will have to pay for the paint. It’s estimated that it costs anywhere from $1,000-3,000 to paint the siding. There might be additional fees, depending on the contractor and the specific job.

Vinyl Siding
When it comes to getting completely new siding, there is more to consider. The original siding will have to be removed. Then, the new siding needs to be purchased and installed.

According to Home Advisor, it may cost $1,000-3,000 to remove the old siding. The siding itself costs money and is usually about $4-8 per square foot. This depends on the quality and thickness of the particular siding that you choose. You also have to pay an hourly rate for a contractor. Some contractors will charge more for detailed areas, such as trim.

All in all, Home Advisor estimates about $9,500 for the entire process. This will vary based on the size of the house and your area as well.

Who Should You Hire for These Repairs?

Some folks might choose to paint their aluminum siding on their own. This is an option, but it might be more convenient to hire a professional. Even if the price is daunting, you will likely save money in one way or another. Think about the medical expenses that could occur if you fell off of a ladder!

Your best bet is searching on a website like Angie’s List to find the best contractors in your area!

So, What Should You Do?

This really depends on how much money you have to spend on the repair or replacement. If you have some room in your budget, it is best to just replace your existing siding with vinyl siding. Repainting your aluminum siding is a cheaper alternative to tide you over until you can afford the complete siding replacement.

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