Wood shingle siding makes any home look attractive. It also provides excellent insulation, especially in harsh New England winters and warm summers. For homeowners who invest in this siding option, maintaining the wood prolongs its life and its beauty while protecting their investment.
Apply Protective Stain
Homeowners can purchase factory finished wood siding or finish the siding on-site. Factory finishing includes a protective stain on the front in addition to back priming. Both finishes decrease water absorption and shingle damage.
If homeowners decide to apply finish, they must follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Latex-based finishes apply best with synthetic bristled brushes. Natural-bristle brushes apply oil-based finishes. With either finish, back brushing ensures the stain applies evenly onto every inch of wood. For the best results, homeowners should apply finish when the outdoor temperature is between 40 to 50 F and when the wood has a moisture content of less than 20 percent.
Wood siding fades in the sun, which negatively affects a home’s appearance. Every three years, homeowners should reapply stain. Most manufacturers recommend repainting wood siding every six years.
Maintain the Wood
Mildew or mold and algae affect the wood’s appearance, but these cosmetic damages do not destroy the wood. When homeowners want to remove these unsightly materials, they should avoid pressure washing the shingles. The high pressure easily removes wood fiber and reduces the life of the siding.
Using diluted bleach cleans off the mold or algae and protects the homes appearance without damaging the shingles. Applying cleaners requires care, however. Protective gear like rubber gloves, boots, and an apron keeps the solution from damaging skin.
Before cleaning the entire home, homeowners can test the strength of the cleanser on a small portion of a single shingle. Using a cleanser that is not diluted properly produces a fuzzy surface or removes surface fibers.
With the properly diluted cleanser, homeowners gently cleanse the wood siding by brushing it onto the shingles. After 15 minutes, washing it off gently should produce a clean appearance. Choosing to work on cloudy days allows the solutions to work more effectively because it evaporates slowly. Homeowners can stain or refinish clean shingles after they dry in several days.
With care and maintenance, wood shingle siding lasts for years. They make a home look attractive and protect the home from weather damage. Homeowners who properly care for and maintain their shingles prolong the life of their siding and protect their investment.