The challenges that come with doing any contracting work in the winter is probably why you don’t see it very often. Despite those challenges, it is technically still possible to install siding in those chilly months but really depends on the materials used and the weather conditions. We’ll go through what winter siding installation entails and how it can be done.
When is the Best Time to Install Siding?
The best time of year to install siding, or any exterior home improvement project, is generally times when the weather is of moderate temperature. So depending on where you live, that’s likely spring, early summer, late summer, and fall in the midwest. As the cold weather sets in, you’ll find contractors will slow or completely halt any outside projects, but ramp up their interior contracting work.
Both the summer heat and the frigid winter temps create their own set of issues when installing vinyl siding and roofing, but it’s not impossible. With proper handling of equipment and materials, safe gear for the crew, and a proficient process, it can be done no matter what time of year.
Pros of Installing Siding During the Winter
Winter is when you will most feel the effects of poor insulation as you crank the heat but find you’re still chilled. Your siding can be the problem! Loose or cracked siding can lead to air leaks which let your heat or air out, causing poor temperature control and higher heating bills. Getting your siding replaced during the winter will give you immediate relief and you’ll notice a difference right away.
Because contractors are going to be much slower during the winter months, they’ll have an open schedule for you. Your chances of getting your project scheduled when it is convenient for you is very high. They may even be able to shorten the turnaround time and the installation team will be out of your hair in no time at all.
During the summer months contractors may charge much higher prices to make up for the months they are essentially out of work. During the winter you might be able to get a lower rate as they price more competitively as they are less busy. They may also be more willing to negotiate a lower price as they don’t have a lot of other cash flow during the slow months.
Boost Curb Appeal
If you’re looking to put your home on the market in the Spring, replacing your siding during the winter will get you ahead of the rest. Not only will it be complete before you put your house on the market, but it will heavily increase your home’s value and curb appeal. You will enhance your ability to sell your home with brand new siding that makes it look and feel as good as new.
Cons of Installing Siding During the Winter
Working in freezing temperatures can be very dangerous for contractors. Any temperature below 31 degrees can lead to frostbite if one isn’t wearing the proper winter gear. Those cold temperatures make it really uncomfortable for contractors to work. Another reason it’s often more difficult is the need to wear warm gear like boots, gloves, jackets, and thermal wear. Milder winter days above 32 degrees are definitely more ideal for getting any siding work done.
In the event of a snowstorm or snow-rain mix, your contractor may have to halt any work. If you live in the midwest you know that winter weather can change at a moment’s notice and we can get dumped on by snow. When that happens, your team requires tarps, and quick clean up to ensure all materials are safe and secure for when the weather clears up again.
Cold Can Effect Certain Materials
Vinyl, the most popularly used siding in the country is actually quite sensitive to any extreme changes in temperature. In cold temperatures, it shrinks down, and when it heats up it expands. The ideal temperature to install vinyl siding is around 50 degrees which makes spring and fall the perfect time. But, if you need to get this installed in the winter, your contractors will face a few complications.
Because vinyl siding will expand when it warms up, installing it as-is would mean it will be far too tight and there won’t be room to expand in the summer. It’s important to cut those materials with about a quarter-inch of room to grow, especially near windows or doors. If it expands and is too close to trim or another edge it could crack or snap causing any window frames or door frames to buckle under the pressure.
Can it Be Done?
Short answer: yes! Although the siding installation process gets a little complicated during the winter, siding experts will be able to replace your siding in a pinch if you must get it done in those months. With the proper care of siding materials and a professional siding company, it can be done.
If you absolutely must have your siding installed in the winter, consider all of your options in regards to materials and timeframe. If you want to avoid the risk of improper installation or unsafe conditions, you can always pre-schedule your project for an early spring date. Locking in your dates as early as possible is your best chance at getting it done before the summer months. If you want more information on installing siding in winter, give us a call at (763) 710-2933.