6 Things That Affect The Cost Of Replacing Your Old Siding

6 Things That Affect The Cost Of Replacing Your Old Siding

You love your Indianapolis-area home, but you are not so in love with the siding. Facing reality, you know you must select new siding soon. Fiber cement siding is a superior choice, but that leaves you wondering, how much does fiber cement siding cost? Six factors play into the final cost of having your home facelifted with beautiful, new fiber cement siding.

Repair or Replace?

Early in your decision-making, you may wonder if your siding must be replaced or if it could possibly be repaired. Wood siding can seldom be salvaged once rot and insect damage have taken a toll. Steel or aluminum siding may be hopelessly dented beyond repair. Vinyl siding often distorts or sags over time, meaning repair is impossible. 

Most homeowners eventually come to grips with the brutal truth:

  • Replacing your home’s siding is more economical over time than repairing existing but flawed siding

Fresh, beautiful new siding can give your home a beautiful new look, reinvigorate your property, and boost curb appeal. Nothing preserves home value like a nicely maintained, crisp, colorful exterior. 

Six Factors

Whether you opt to replace your current siding with wood, vinyl, metal, or durable fiber cement siding from James Hardie, the same six factors affect the bottom line:

  1. The size of your house — Greater numbers of house sides and wall sections increase costs; two-story houses cost more than single-story homes.
  2. Architectural complexity — A sleek, modern ranch house has fewer gables, windows, corners, and edges than, for example, a Queen Ann Victorian home. Every exterior surface must be protected with foam backing, trim material, carefully cut miters, drip caps, channel supports, and starter supports.
  3. Siding material — The material you choose will alter the cost of replacing you siding. The more elaborate or detailed your choice of siding surface, the higher the cost to produce it. James Hardie fiber cement siding is an economical choice for different price points. It comes in plank lap, architectural panel, shingle, and vertical siding configurations.
  4. Beneath the surface — House wrap and backer board, as well as foam backing or insulation, may be needed beneath the final layer of siding. Your siding contractor can discuss your options to make the siding as energy-efficient as possible.
  5. Removal — No siding product is designed to be installed over existing siding, so the old siding must come down and be carted away. Depending on the extent of deterioration, this could mean taking the house down to its exterior sheathing or even down to the studs if the damage is extensive.
  6. Labor — Siding installation is not a casual craft. You need highly trained, skilled technicians to correctly install the materials, which becomes more critical with advanced materials like fiber cement siding.


Some future costs need to be calculated along with your siding contractor’s estimate. Wood siding is costly to maintain, requiring constant attention and regular repainting. Vinyl siding is relatively easy to clean but is easily affected by high temperatures. It should never be pressure-washed and seems to promote mold and mildew growth.

Fiber cement siding hardly needs any maintenance. You can expect decades of reliable, protective service from a good installation. Every now and then, all that is required is a garden hose and soft-brush scrubbing. After decades, if the color begins to fade, the surface is easily paintable without all the preparation work needed for wood, vinyl, or steel. 

Many homeowners prefer to tackle siding maintenance, but that is not always a safe or economical idea. Homes two or more stories tall become dangerous to work on, which means you may be hiring a cleaning service, year after year, for your wood, vinyl, and steel siding. 

Mother Earth

Another cost to consider is the embedded energy and environmental costs of the material you select. Pulling the old siding off creates enough of a carting and landfill concern without adding additional issues. 

Vinyl siding is made from petroleum, a fossil fuel. Steel siding, while eminently recyclable, also requires tremendous amounts of energy to produce. Fiber cement siding is made from basic, easily obtainable, natural materials (silica sand, cellulose wood fiber, Portland cement, some proprietary additives, and water). 

Comparing longevity, fiber cement siding outlasts wood siding by up to three times, meaning you could invest in three replacements of wood siding in the life of one installation of fiber cement siding.

Fiber for Fiber

Since fiber cement siding is made from such basic, simple materials, its costs do not tend to rise and fall as rapidly as building materials tied to fossil fuels, like vinyl siding. That means replacing old siding with fresh fiber cement siding (a once-in-50-years occurrence) will not financially pinch an Indianapolis homeowner. Please contact us at Moss Roofing today. We offer complete roofing services, yes, but we also expertly and efficiently install beautiful James Hardie fiber cement siding to make your Indianapolis-area home a showpiece!

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