When you choose cedar siding for your home, you do so for the many advantages cedar siding provides. Its unmatched beauty adds value to your home and property and offers energy-saving benefits.
But during your research deciding which type of siding to choose, you no doubt discovered that cedar siding demands a bit of maintenance to keep it looking its best. This unique siding material is robust and beautiful. It also is naturally resistant to pests and decay. That said, it still requires maintenance to keep these intrinsic properties.
This guide will explain exactly what steps you need to take as a property owner to protect your new cedar siding.
The 5 Basic Steps
- Water – Large amounts of water for an extended period can damage any type of wood, and cedar is no exception. If you notice missing pieces of flashing or have a lot of water vapor inside the home, or even inadequate insulation, this can affect your siding.
Check where the siding seams overlap and see if there is any damage that needs to be repaired before adding caulking where it may be missing. Limiting the amount of water your siding is exposed to will extend its life.
- Cracks. Inspect your siding regularly for any cracks forming in the wood. This will also help you discover areas of excess moisture or invasive insects early enough to prevent any major damage.
- Termites. The bane of any homeowner’s existence! These swarming insects can cause major damage before you realize they’re there. That’s why regular inspection of your cedar siding is vital to protecting it from these pests.
If you discover termite holes, treat them immediately with a targeted insecticide or if the damage is done, replace those parts immediately.
- Other Pests. Termites aren’t the only creatures that can cause damage to your cedar siding. Mice, rats, woodpeckers, and ants chew on wood, looking for food. Regular inspections will help you keep these potential issues at bay.
- Cleaning. Cedar siding accumulates dust and dirt or even sand depending on your geographical location. Power washing can be used but make sure not to use too high a water pressure setting as it can damage the wood or soak the wood too much.
Regular soap and water are recommended. Keep it simple, and don’t use any harsh chemical cleaners. If you’ve noticed mold or mildew, apply a vinegar solution and never use bleach.
Staining & Painting Cedar Siding
Cedar is lovely in its natural state, but some homeowners choose to either stain or paint the wood. If you do this, follow these steps to maintain the effect:
- Inspect the siding for any bit of wood that is peeling. Gently sand rough areas with gentle sandpaper and rinse with water.
- Remove the previous layer of stain or paint with a power sander and wipe it clean.
- Stain or paint your siding.
- Use a clear protective coating to seal the wood.
Learn More About Cedar Siding Care