Vinyl Siding – Causes of Warping and Buckling
We’ve received several emails recently asking why their vinyl siding is warping and buckling. Warped and buckled vinyl siding is one of the most common results of improper installation. If you’re vinyl siding looks like the sample photo then you need to read this article.
What Causes Warped or Buckled Vinyl Siding?
Vinyl Siding Should “Hang” From The Wall
Vinyl siding may look like wood lap siding but it definitely should not be installed the same way! Vinyl siding is actually designed to hang from the fasteners so that it can easily move from side to side as it expands and contracts due to thermal expansion. If the nails that support vinyl siding are driven “home” they prevent the siding from moving and the result is shown in the photo.
Is Your Vinyl Siding Nailed To Tight?
If you suspect your vinyl siding is having a problem you can easily test it to see if it’s been installed improperly. Without taking apart your siding you should be able to grab ahold of a siding panel and move it from side to side about 1/4 to 1/2 inch fairly easily. If you can’t move the panel then it was probably nailed to tightly. As you can see in the adjacent photo the nails should not be fully driven “home”. If you notice the head of the nail is not even touching the surface of the nailing hem.
Can Buckled / Warped Vinyl Siding Be Fixed?
Unfortunately most vinyl siding cannot be fixed once it buckles. Buckled or warped vinyl siding will hold the that shape forever in most cases. To fix the problem the damaged pieces must be removed and replaced. This is one reason that it’s a very good idea to save extra pieces of siding when you build a new home or have a new siding job done.
If you’re having new siding installed on your home take the time to inspect the nailing. Ask your contractor how they like to install the siding and be sure it move freely. It’s much easier to confront this problem while they are still on site instead a year down the road on a hot summers day with buckled siding!