Painting Your Exterior Vs. Maintenance Free Products – How Do You Choose? The Pros and Cons

In today’s challenging economy, there is no way around paint’s main selling point – painting your exterior is just plain less expensive than choosing maintenance free products. Paint is also frequently the choice of people who want to vinyl siding examplesmaintain the historic integrity of an older home or who just love the classic look of a painted exterior.

Some cons of choosing to paint your home? It must be redone every 5 – 7 years. If you have ever done it, you know that painting the outside of a house can be a messy and time-consuming job that involves a lot of scraping and mess. For many homeowners it is worth the labor intensive process but especially when painting an older home, care must be taken to ensure it’s properly done. Many older homes were painted with paint containing lead. Chipping away at that paint can create a very dangerous health hazard, especially for pets and children. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has very specific procedures about how lead paint should be tested for, handled and disposed of.

So what about going maintenance free with products like vinyl siding or aluminum fascia? You are going to pay a little bit more but these are products that aren’t going to crack or fade like paint. They come with a lifetime guarantee and in lots of colors and styles. If you want to keep the aesthetics of an older home, there is even a maintenance free wood that can be put over older wood trim or varieties of siding that have the look of wood. There is everything from aged-look vinyl “board and batten” siding to aluminum and PVC products that mimic “old-fashioned” paint  or texture.

Applying siding also gives the homeowner the option of adding insulation or a vapor barrier beneath the siding and can create a more uniform look between original housing and later additions or homes with irregularity in the exterior paint. This can be a huge benefit with older homes. So if there are actually very few cons to going maintenance free, why choose traditional painted or stained wood? For some families there is just no substitute for the look and feel of original, classic wood.

Everyone loves choices, and you have them. Whether you choose paint ( classic looking and less expensive but requires frequent, messy upkeep) or Maintenance Free Products (more expensive but long lasting and in a variety of colors and styles), Spicher Home Improvement can help you create a home you love to come home to. Contact us today!