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vinyl siding

Reviving Vinyl Siding Is Doable and Affordable With Today's Paint Choices

May 16, 2020 by Marc Rapport
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The whole idea of vinyl siding is to avoid repainting a non-brick house so often, right? But that doesn't mean siding can't be repainted, and doing so can be an effective, efficient way of sprucing up a residence before putting it on the market.

HomeAdvisor (NASDAQ: ANGI) puts the average cost of siding a house with vinyl at $5,655 to $13,890. The average cost to paint? Provia says homeowners report the average cost at $2,578. And doing it yourself knocks that price down even more.

So, the takeaway here is that a house with vinyl faded by age and weather but in otherwise good shape could be a good candidate for a good coverup.

If the paint sticks

Advances in paint technology have made this choice possible, according to Family Handyman, by coming up with formulations that stick to siding. Sherwin-Williams (NYSE: SHW), for instance, offers paint especially for this application, while Behr touts its Ultra Exterior Satin Enamel as appropriate for all surfaces.

Regardless of brand, the experts say, what matters is that the paint be formulated so that it does not set too hard to accommodate the expansion and contraction that vinyl siding naturally undergoes as the seasons change.

And even then, the sharp-eyed DIYer will want to make sure to watch for thin lines to appear when the siding contracts in the cold and do a touch-up if it's obvious enough to warrant such.

Don't go too dark

The Spruce also advises avoiding choosing a paint color that's darker than the original color. Each type of vinyl is designed to absorb a specific amount of heat, and going too dark with the new color could lead to warping or buckling.

A high-quality latex urethane paint or one that's a blend of urethane and acrylic resins can handle the job. Check labels and websites or ask an in-store expert about vinyl-safe color choices.

And after that selection is made, painting vinyl is much like any other painting task.

Prime before the paint

The job may call for priming first, especially if the siding shows signs of deteriorating beyond simply fading; pitting is a good example. The Spruce says some professionals recommend it every time while others say it depends on the condition of the vinyl.

Either way, also consider the recommendations of the manufacturer for the specific paint you choose as you decide whether this first step is needed.

Wash it down first either way

The vinyl siding will need a good cleaning before painting, whether priming first or not. The general recommendation is to use a mix of a third cup of laundry detergent, two-thirds cup of general-purpose household cleaner, and two-thirds cup of oxygen bleach with each gallon of water.

Hose the vinyl siding down, and then spray the cleaning mix on and scrub it by hand with a cloth or soft-bristled brush, working from the bottom up.

Then, you're ready to paint.

Cloudy skies and warranties

A couple of last recommendations. One: try to do the job when skies are overcast and temperatures comfortable. Hot sunshine, high humidity, and a lot of wind can all complicate matters.

And finally, check the warranty on the siding. If it's still in place, painting the siding could void the guarantee.

So, bottom line, if you want to paint the siding on your house to make it more pleasant for you or more appealing to a buyer, go ahead. Just choose the right paint and the right time, and it should be well worth your while.

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Marc Rapport has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Sherwin-Williams. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.