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5 Vinyl Siding Maintenance Tips for Your Home

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The best ways to clean vinyl siding and keep your home looking beautiful year after year.

Vinyl siding is the most popular form of exterior home cladding in the nation and for good reasons. It’s beautiful, versatile, affordable, energy efficient, and easy to maintain. So exactly how do you maintain it? Like any form of siding, it needs occasional attention to keep it looking and performing its best.

Over time vinyl siding will accumulate dirt, pollen, and bird droppings, along with possible mold and mildew, especially in shaded areas. Durable vinyl is remarkably easy to clean, especially if you take on the task as part of a regular maintenance schedule.

Here are 5 vinyl siding maintenance tips to keep your home looking fresh and new.

1. Start at the bottom.

Vinyl siding maintenance starts with clean vinyl siding. Using a soft microfiber cloth or a long-handled, soft-bristle brush, begin cleaning your vinyl siding at the bottom of the wall and work your way up. This prevents any streaking in the cleaning process.

Be sure to clean away any residue as you work your way up so it doesn’t dry on the surface. Keep that spray garden hose handy to clean away suds and dirt with each section. An extension wand is handy for working in high areas. Also, be sure not to use abrasive cleaning implements such as steel wool or hard bristles that can mar the vinyl surface.

Closeup of clean vinyl siding on a house with a brick chimney

2. Use the proper cleaning solution.

One of the safest and simplest cleaning solutions to use on vinyl is a mixture of 70% water and 30% white vinegar. This is especially effective in removing mold and mildew. If you’re concerned about harming any landscaping near your siding, use a mixture of one gallon of water with one cup of oxygen bleach (not chlorine bleach). For tough stains such as grass, grease, and rust, consider using household cleaners such as Murphy’s Oil Soap, Windex, Fantastik, or Lysol.

3. Be very careful when using a pressure washer.

Although cleaning vinyl siding with a pressure washer can be easy to do, you need to take extra care that water does not get behind the siding. Be sure to set the washer on a low or moderate setting and spray directly perpendicular to the siding, not from a lower angle where the spray can get up behind the siding. Check with your siding manufacturer to see if they recommend against using a pressure washer.

Always use caution when using a pressure washer around older exterior doors and windows where cleaning solution may leak inside the house.

Angled perspective of a gray house with exemplary vinyl siding maintenance and gleaming white trim.

4. Protect your vinyl siding from mishaps.

Although vinyl is not likely to burn with flames, it can melt when it comes into contact with high heat. For this reason, be especially careful to keep barbecue grills, machinery, or fire bowls away from walls clad with vinyl siding.

Insecticides and herbicides can discolor vinyl siding. Be sure to cover your vinyl siding with a plastic tarp when using these solutions. Also, use extra caution when working with stains and sealants for other DIY home improvement projects.

5. Think twice before painting vinyl siding.

One of the benefits of having vinyl siding is that you don’t have to paint it! The color should last indefinitely. With regular cleanings, it will look great for many years — hence the popularity of choosing this kind of siding.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t paint vinyl siding if you have another exterior color scheme in mind that reflects your personal style. Or perhaps you’d like to paint an accent area or entryway. However, you should carefully consider painting siding because doing so could void your manufacturer’s warranty. Did you know that many premium siding manufactures offer a lifetime limited warranty that can be transferred to a new owner? It’s a nice selling point if you move, and a point to consider when looking for a new home. Be sure to ask a seller about transferable warranties on vinyl siding.

For more than 25 years your friends at Window World have been the experts in replacement doors and windows. But did you know we can also help you with your vinyl siding needs and installation? We’ll be happy to talk to you about the energy efficiency and easy care of our siding selection. It all begins with a free in-home consultation. Contact the Window World store near you.

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