Vinyl siding is a durable, affordable choice for your home’s exterior. There’s plenty to love about this material—except for the time-consuming upkeep required to keep it in tip-top shape.
When vinyl siding is exposed to humidity, rain, snow, and other damp conditions, mold and mildew growth can quickly develop. Unfortunately, wet weather combined with direct sunlight can also create a white, chalky residue on your siding due to a process called oxidation.
The presence of mold and oxidation on your exterior is a reasonable cause for concern. Not only are these problems unsightly, but they can cause your vinyl siding to deteriorate rapidly. That’s why we’re here—to help you learn how to restore your Kansas City home’s exterior to a low-maintenance, eye-catching state that you can be proud of!
Mold and mildew thrive in damp, moist environments. They also tend to grow in dark, shaded areas that don’t often see sunlight.
Poorly maintained siding also provides an attractive environment for mold to grow. Mold feeds on dirt and dust, and in turn, makes your siding appear even grimier.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to prevent mold growth on vinyl siding completely. It’s unlikely you’ll want to remove all the trees, porches, and other shade structures around your home’s exterior—and rain, hail, and snow will prevent your home from ever being fully “dry.”
Vinyl siding is made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resin, which is a type of plastic. When the chemicals in PVC are exposed to oxygen, a natural process called oxidation occurs.
Oxidized vinyl siding is typically dull, faded, and chalky to the touch. You can often see oxidation on dark-colored siding, but you may have to run your hand across light-colored panels to notice where they have become oxidized.
Oxidation is a common problem with vinyl siding, especially where your home’s exterior endures prolonged exposure to sunlight. When left unchecked, oxidation can cause your siding to become fragile and breakable.
Can I Fix My Moldy and Chalky Vinyl Siding?
The short answer? Yes.
You can remove harmful oxidation and mold growth before costly damage occurs with the following process:
- Perform a quick rinse. Wash off dirt, dust, and debris with a garden hose. Spray the water toward the ground to prevent water from becoming lodged between your siding panels and exterior wall.
- Mix a vinegar solution. Combine five cups of vinegar with one gallon of water. You can also use a combination of laundry detergent, bleach, and water. However, don’t mix the bleach and vinegar solutions. Together, they create toxic vapors that can burn your eyes and lungs.
- Apply the cleaner. Using a soft-bristled brush, apply the solution in small ten-foot sections to remove the mold and oxidation. Rinse each area before the solution dries on your siding.
Although this process is temporarily effective, you’ll find it impossible to dodge mold growth and oxidation on your vinyl siding forever. In a damp, sunny environment like Kansas City, you’ll likely need to complete this cleaning process at least once a year—which is both time-consuming and frustrating.
We believe the best way to eliminate mold growth and oxidation on your vinyl siding (for good!) is to replace it with a durable, low-maintenance alternative. That’s why we recommend and install James Hardie fiber cement siding.
James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding: The Permanent Solution to Moldy, Oxidized Siding
Hardie siding has many excellent advantages that combat the frustrating problems you may be facing with vinyl siding, like mold and oxidation.
Here are a few of the most notable benefits this type of siding offers:
Fiber cement siding is made from a natural combination of Portland cement, sand, water, and cellulose fibers. Unlike vinyl siding’s manufactured chemical makeup, Hardie siding will not interact with oxygen and will not cause your home’s exterior to become oxidized.
Hardie siding boards are Engineered for Climate, meaning they are built to withstand the specific weather conditions in your region. Fiber cement siding can withstand the effects of rain, snow, and humidity that affect the Kansas City area, so unlike vinyl siding or other siding types, you won’t have to worry about unsightly mold and mildew growth.
Oxidation may cause vinyl siding to become dull, which can lessen your home’s curb appeal. Fortunately, Hardie siding comes with ColorPlus Technology—a baked-on color that resists fading and keeps your siding looking great, with little to no maintenance necessary.
Discover How You Can Transform Your Kansas City Home with James Hardie Siding
It’s easy to see why so many Kansas City homeowners love fiber cement siding as an alternative to vinyl. It’s attractive, low-maintenance, and eliminates the tiresome upkeep and long-term dangers of mold growth and oxidation.
As Kansas City’s award-winning James Hardie siding contractor, we’d love to help you determine if fiber cement siding is the right choice for your home.
Learn how the lasting benefits of James Hardie fiber cement siding can elevate your home’s attractive, inviting appearance and protect your exterior for decades to come.