Summertime in Kansas means thunderstorms, wind, high heat index, and possibly tornadoes. Winter on the other hand brings ice and extreme cold. How do you make sure your home is able to handle both efficiently without sustaining damage?
When we look at the types of storms we get in Kansas, investing in high quality materials for your home makes a lot of sense. We’ve seen what hail can do to vinyl siding and it isn’t pretty.
The fact is many homes in our area have been built with materials that just aren’t made to last. A prime example are the spec homes that go up in new development areas. There’s nothing wrong with these homes! They serve their purpose just fine. But it’s important to recognize that these homes come with a list of things that will likely need to be replaced within the first few years of ownership: Vinyl windows and vinyl siding.
Remember, vinyl is just another word for plastic. It is subject to warping and becoming brittle in the elements and will need replacing to keep your home protected and well insulated. If you own a “spec” home or know your home has vinyl siding and windows, it’s a good idea to be inspecting things frequently so you catch anything that needs to be replaced or repaired before long term damage is done to your home.
Another key thing to look at is your guttering. When we have moisture - whether it’s a big rain event or an ice storm - gutters become very important in filling the role they serve in protecting your home from water damage. Keep an eye out for leadking, cracks, sagging, overflow, or frequent build up.
The types of products we recommend to best protect your home are fiberglass windows, seamless steel siding, and seamless gutters.
Fiberglass windows are more insulating, stronger, and longer lasting than vinyl. They are able to fit your home so much more tightly because unlike vinyl, they don’t warp. This means the window stays as it was installed instead of having failed seals, gaps, or cracks over time from temperature changes.
Another benefit of fiberglass windows is the strength. Because they are stronger, the frame can actually be smaller. This means the window area can be larger and be less obstructive to your view. The window panes are highly customizable with gas fills, tints, and number of pane options. The window frames and hardware come in lots of colors to match your home, instead of just white.
Seamless steel siding is cut to length on site at your home so there are no pieces to match together. This means there are less opportunities for insects to get in, for wind damage, and for water to seep in at joints. It also is a more durable material.
Sometimes we get questions about using metal siding. Won’t it dent when hail hits it? The steel siding we use is a very heavy gauge steel - not like what your shed is made of. In the 13 years we have been installing steel siding on 100-150 homes per year, we have only ever seen 2 homes with steel siding having hail damage. On those two homes, the damaged siding was the least of their worries because the storm had also caused a lot of other damage. It was a blessing their home was even there at all. That is the level of storm it takes to damage your home when it is protected with steel siding.
Seamless gutters are exactly as the name implies. They are custom fitted to your home in long segments that stretch the entire length of the house. There are no “fitting pieces together” because these gutters are cut to length on site. This eliminates weak points in your gutters where problems can occur and reduces the maintenance and upkeep you will have to do.
Quality Siding and Windows Matter
We started carrying these higher quality products not long after we opened our business because we were so disappointed in the materials we saw so many using on homes in our area. They just didn’t hold up to the weather, or to time.
Having work done on your home is almost always a headache, so we want to see the products last longer so we don’t have to be doing renovations every five years. All in all, if you’ve paid much attention to the quality of the things you buy lately, they just don’t make things like they used to. Being able to still find quality products to use on your home is important. Your home is probably one of the biggest investments you will make in your life. It should be made to last.