GSM Siding

Clapboard siding on this home provides a traditional look.

Your home’s siding protects the structure of your home, but what protects your siding? The warranty.

Whether you’re shopping for new siding or interested in maintaining the value of your current siding, it’s important to understand how siding warranties work. That way you’ll know what will be covered and what will not, and you can maintain your siding accordingly.

Labor or materials

Your siding manufacturer will likely provide a warranty on the siding itself. The installer might warranty the installation job, to be sure it’s installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications. Your installer should be able to explain the warranty options for both. In general, warranties that last longer or provide more protection will be more expensive. Consider how much the protection is worth to you. Would you have room in your budget to replace siding in a situation in which the materials and labor would not be covered? It might be worth spending a little more upfront to prevent major expenses later.

Coverage limits

What’s covered by the warranty will also vary among manufacturer, product grade and material. A warranty may include protection from insects, hale, rot, delamination, excessive fading, peeling, cracking, rusting, corroding and more. Warranties will differ based on the material. Wood siding is much more susceptible to damage from things like water and insects, whereas composite siding is much more durable, with the ability to resist severe weather and repel insects.

Term

The term of the loan is another important consideration. Many manufacturers offer a limited lifetime warranty. If the warranty covers only a set period, such as 50 years, check whether the warranty is pro-rated. This means that the older the siding is at the time of a claim, the less the manufacturer will pay. If you are remodeling a home to sell or intend to sell in the near future, consider whether the warranty can be transferred to new owners. This feature could increase the value of the home. Be sure to let the new owners know how to take advantage of the transfer. There is usually a time limit in which the transfer must be completed, such as 30 or 45 days after the sale of the home. Some features of the warranty may not transfer, and the term may be reduced after the transfer.

Routine maintenance

The siding manufacturer will likely require that you keep the siding maintained to a certain standard. For example, you may be required to use a soft-bristled brush as opposed to a pressure-washer. The manufacturer will offer recommended products to clean the siding and warn against using strong chemical cleaners. Damage caused by issues such as mold left on the surface of the siding may not be covered. The warranty may also prohibit you from painting, varnishing or otherwise refinishing your siding.

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