Signs It’s Time for Siding Replacement: Stucco vs Siding

Not many exterior features can make a home look as good as beautiful siding. On the other hand, the curb appeal can drop significantly if the siding is damaged, dirty, or shows signs of aging. T-11 wood siding can be an eyesore in good condition for resale to home buyers from up north. T 11 siding screams wood frame construction. Up north, T 11 siding is rarely used to side a house, it is primarily used as backyard shed siding.  Knowing when it’s time for siding replacement can be difficult, so it’s ideal to have a professional inspection completed. Since there are several different types of siding, it might be more economical to repair the wood rot sections instead of replacing them. You won’t know for sure until a professional examines it, but here are some of the top signs to look out for that indicate siding replacement is necessary soon.

siding replacementJames Hardie Board vs Stucco Siding

Economically, basic stucco costs a bit less than Hardie siding. There are good reasons for the cost difference. Depending on the wall framing of your house, 2×4 or 2×6 and the thickness of the stucco used, ⅝ or ⅞ these factors determine how well stucco will hold up over time. Keep in mind that all wood frame houses expand, contract and sway marginally in high winds. Stucco is rigid and has very little movement, much less than wood. We have all seen stucco falling off of houses or cracked along the plywood sheathing joints in need of repair. More subtle than that are hairline fractures that are hard to notice, allowing seepage over time that leads to major water intrusion problems. We recommend painting stucco every six years with quality paint to help prevent issues. Many stucco homes have stucco all the way down to dirt. This is an invitation for subterranean termites that cannot tunnel through concrete but can tunnel through stucco, making termite inspections useless because their tunnels cannot be seen between the stucco and concrete slab.Stucco has a one-year warranty, Hardie siding has a 30 year warranty. Hardie flexes with the movement of the framing. When installed properly, it will not take on any stress cracks that allow water in.    

Spot Signs Of Moisture Damage

All residential siding contractors will look for moisture damage when examining home siding. Look for soft spots in the wood or even spots of discoloration on other types of siding. When you see signs of moisture damage on the outside, chances are you have a larger issue behind the siding that should be addressed immediately. This is when having a professional take on the job is important, so they can determine the extent of the issue. Many siding installers can simply replace the damaged siding and match the existing siding perfectly. But if the moisture damage is too extensive, then a full siding replacement may be recommended.

Look For Signs Of Rot Or Mold

Mold can grow quickly when it has the right environment to thrive. Florida, particularly south Florida, is prone to mold because of the humidity levels. Even a small crack in your siding can allow moisture to penetrate in and promote mold growth. Treating mold or rot should be considered high-importance when it’s spotted. Since mold can spread rapidly, the last thing you want is to wait and make the project larger than it needs to be.

Damaged Siding Can Lead To Future Problems

Whether you have wood siding, vinyl siding, James Hardie siding, or any other type, damage should be repaired as soon as possible. Sometimes fasteners can come loose, debris from the lawn mower could damage it, or many other situations could cause damage. Leaving the damage alone could result in larger problems later. A small hole, window calk failure, or paint failure can allow moisture to penetrate, which can lead to total siding replacement instead of a single panel. It’s best to have siding installers repair the issue as soon as possible to keep the extent of the damage to a minimum.

Can Damaged Siding Result In Higher Energy Bills?

Sometimes siding damage isn’t obvious to the average homeowner, especially if you have a large house and can’t inspect it thoroughly. One thing to keep an eye on is your energy bill. If you have the same living habits, but notice your energy bills increase every month, it could be a sign your siding is causing problems. This issue will be particularly noticeable in the summer since that’s when your HVAC system operates the most. You could be losing air through your siding and causing your HVAC to work even harder, which increases your energy bills.

Sometimes Siding Needs More Than A Fresh Coat Of Paint

Whether you’re looking to sell your home soon or if you simply want to update the look of your home, painting your siding is an option. However, before you undergo a painting project, have  Florida state certified siding contractors examine it to determine whether it’s worth it. If your siding only has a few years left before it needs to be replaced, then it may make sense to get it replaced instead of investing in a paint job. The time it takes to prepare and paint siding can be expensive and should last for many years when done correctly. The last thing you want is to have that investment not last as long as it can because the siding needs to be replaced before then.

When Should You Pursue Home Siding Replacement?

You can have  replacement siding completed at any time throughout the year. The key is to work with experienced siding professionals who know what conditions are ideal to work in. Depending on where you live, they may suggest replacing wood siding with vinyl siding or James Hardie siding for various reasons. Of course, if you need siding replacement, then you shouldn’t delay in getting it done. Further water intrusion in your home increases the costs and a professional can tell you how urgent the project is.

Only Work With Licensed And Insured Contractors For Siding Replacement

When you need siding replacement, it’s critical to only work with licensed and insured contractors, permitting is complex.  It’s also important to understand their specialties, such as their custom siding experience, whether they specialize in Hardie siding installation, and more. Knowing this will give you peace of mind that your project will be done the right way.

At db Home Improvements, we specialize in siding and we are certified with James Hardie to install their siding. We are specialists in all siding. We want to help you improve the look and feel of your home. Our siding experts can inspect your home for any damage and make recommendations that make the most sense for you. We are experienced at working with all types of siding, so contact us today to schedule an evaluation of yours.


The answer is yes, you need a permit. The permitting jurisdiction depends on the area you live in. Here’s some helpful information for do-it-yourselfers.

If you live in Martin County, including Stuart, Palm City, Hobe Sound, and Jensen Beach, call (772) 288-5916

If you live in the City of Stuart, call (772) 288-5326 

If you live in the City of Sewall’s Point, call (772) 287-2455

If you live in Saint Lucie County:

Port Saint Lucie City, call (772) 871-5132

Fort Pierce City, call (772) 467-3000

If you live in the unincorporated cities of Fort Pierce, Port Saint Lucie or Jensen Beach, call Unincorporated Saint Lucie County at (772) 871-5132

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