What Every Homeowner Should Know About Caring For Wood Siding

If you've been looking for a new siding option for your house, you should think about something unique, like wood siding. Some homeowners avoid wood siding out of uncertainty about its care, but when you understand what it needs, you can keep it looking great. Here's what you need to know about taking care of wood siding on your house.

Initial Protections

When you first install wood siding, you should take steps to protect it from some of the potential damages. For example, consider treating it with a protective stain, paint or sealer. This will keep the wood from being exposed to the elements. Since that kind of exposure can cause decay due to moisture buildup, don't overlook this step.

If you decide to paint your wood siding, be aware that it will need to be repainted every couple of years to deal with chips and other weathering. Stains, on the other hand, last much longer than paint because the stain will penetrate the wood fibers.

By choosing stain, you can preserve the natural beauty of the wood itself. There are stains available in many different hues, allowing you to find one that enhances the wood color instead of masking it like paint can. If you want just the raw wood color, treat it with a clear varnish or sealant instead.

Regular Cleaning

Like any other siding, wood is susceptible to dirt and staining. Avoid any long-term discoloration or dirt accumulation by cleaning your siding a couple of times a year. Warm, soapy water with a long-handled brush will do the trick. Opt for a soft-bristled brush, though. It ensures that you don't scratch the siding. Work in small sections, starting at the bottom and moving upward.

If you see any black spots on your wood siding, that may be a sign of mold or mildew on the wood. You'll need a mixture of water and color-safe bleach to treat these areas. The bleach kills the mold spores so that they don't come back. Rinse it well afterward, though. Leaving any bleach residue may be damaging to the siding.

Proper Restoration

Wood siding can be vulnerable to discoloration as it ages. If your wood starts to discolor, you'll want to restore it with a little bit of sanding. You can do the job quickly and easily with a power sander or even a sand blaster. Choose a soft medium for the sand blaster, though. Otherwise you may cause pitting and other damage to the wood.

Focus on removing just the outer layer of the wood from the siding. The outer layer is all that should be affected by the weathering, so when you remove it, you'll showcase the natural color of the wood beneath. This returns your siding to the like-new appearance you had when you installed it. Talk to a siding expert, like Blue Springs Siding and Windows, for more help.