Comparing aluminum siding and vinyl siding is an easy way to get started when making decisions about the best way to remodel and renovate your home’s exterior. Since both materials come with certain risks and deterioration concerns, looking at additional options like fiber cement is naturally the next step.
This guide provides a quick and easy comparison of vinyl siding vs. aluminum siding to get you started on the search for good, reliable siding. Take a look at the risks and drawbacks of both materials, and get an introduction to a smart alternative that provides better performance overall.
What to Look for in Great Siding
Siding is absolutely essential when it comes to creating attractive curb appeal and charm for your home. Cosmetic issues and damaged siding can ultimately affect the overall value of a home, so it’s imperative to get reliable siding panels that can maintain an attractive appearance.
There are three main things to look for when shopping for quality siding materials – and when conducting a vinyl and aluminum siding comparison. First, durability is going to play a big role in the value of the siding. Naturally, the durability of a particular material will influence many other factors, including the maintenance expectations. Some siding materials are specifically built to be low maintenance, meaning you can save time, money, and energy down the line. Other materials will require regular upkeep. Finally, the aesthetic value is also important when comparing aluminum siding to vinyl siding – or any exterior material, for that matter.
Overview: Aluminum Siding vs. Vinyl Siding
Both of these materials are often used for residential house siding, so they offer good accessibility and familiarity. Though both aluminum and vinyl are capable of providing a certain level of value and style, there are certain factors that homeowners should be aware of when deciding between vinyl or aluminum siding, as they can make all the difference.
Most of the distinction stems from their compositional differences. Vinyl is made from polyvinyl chloride, which is a type of plastic that has been around since the 1950s. Because of its plastic composition, vinyl is quite flammable and may pose certain environmental concerns. Aluminum has been used as siding since the 1930s and was one of the first alternatives to wood. Thus, it is often produced to resemble wood siding, with artificial wood grain patterns as an aesthetic bonus.
Let’s take a closer look at aluminum siding vs. vinyl siding:
Both materials are more durable than wood siding, but they can still accrue damage in certain conditions. Aluminum is prone to dents and dings because it’s fairly thin. Though vinyl doesn’t dent as easily as aluminum, it can show other signs of damage, like cracking and puncturing – especially in severe weather.
Aluminum siding typically has exterior color that’s baked onto the surface, while vinyl usually has infused color. For this reason, vinyl siding tends to maintain its color better, though both materials can show signs of fading over time.
Both materials require maintenance, but for different reasons. Aluminum does not maintain color as well, so it needs to be painted every few years. Vinyl, on the other hand, requires more routine cleaning, since it’s prone to mold and mildew growth on its slick surface.
There’s no question here – aluminum is the better choice when it comes to flammability concerns.
Aluminum is a more versatile material. Because of its metal composition, aluminum siding is better suited for a range of climates, including areas that experience seasonal freezing/thawing, snow, and heat. Vinyl is better suited for mild or temperate climates that don’t have extreme temperatures or soggy conditions.
Here’s a category where the vinyl vs. aluminum siding comparison comes out in a tie. Both materials offer a range of colors and styles, making it pretty easy to find a design that will look great on your home.
A Better Alternative for Beautiful Siding: Fiber Cement
Though both aluminum and vinyl are commonly used for siding, they still have a number of issues – especially when it comes to maintenance needs and durability. Instead of limiting your siding search to vinyl and aluminum, why not consider an alternative material that outperforms both?
Fiber cement is crafted from a unique blend of concrete, sand, and cellulose fibers. This translates to a long-lasting exterior product that can stand up to the elements without accruing significant damage or deterioration. Another benefit? Fiber cement is considered a low-maintenance siding solution, which is a relief for most homeowners. All in all, fiber cement is a great alternative to both vinyl siding and aluminum siding.
With an abundance of styles and colors, Allura makes it easy to beautify your home – with the confidence that it will continue to look great years down the line. Contact Allura today to explore a variety of long-lasting siding styles.