Aluminum siding costs anywhere between $1.75 and $7 per square foot to install on a home. If you were to install aluminum siding on the average 1,500 square foot home, you could expect to pay a national average of $6,563in total installation costs at about $4.40 per sq. ft. Project costs will vary depending on the size and design of your house, additional materials needed, local labor rates, and the cost to remove old siding if necessary. Aluminum siding is usually just slightly more expensive than a standard vinyl siding replacement. However, aluminum has significant advantages over vinyl, discussed below.
Aluminum siding is a great option if you want to give your home a fresh look, as well as long lasting protection from the elements. Believe it or not, aluminum siding does not simply come in metallic, silver planks that look like industrial buildings. This siding comes in a wide variety of colors and can convincingly create the look of more expensive wood siding, as well as other high-quality types of siding, at a much lower cost.
Modern aluminum siding is dent-resistant, impervious to insects, and fire-proof. In fact, if you live in an area that is prone to wildfires, installing aluminum siding may even help you get a discount on your homeowner’s insurance premiums. Aluminum siding is very low maintenance, and with proper care it can last up to 40 or more years. Additionally, aluminum is the second most affordable siding type to install.
In addition to the benefits mentioned above, aluminum siding provides additional noteworthy benefits. Whether or not you have considered aluminum siding for your home, be sure to take note of the following benefits:
Aluminum’s light weight makes for a quick and low-cost installation.
Can be painted
Aluminum can be painted in a wide variety of colors to fit the look you desire for your home. Choose colors ranging from bright reds and yellows to neutral beiges and grays. The color of your siding is also baked on; this means it will not need frequent repainting, like with wood siding.
If you are looking to reduce your environmental impact, most aluminum siding contains up to 30 percent of recycled materials. To put that in perspective, covering a 2,000 square foot home in wood siding would take the equivalent of 40 to 50 trees, or one whole acre. In contrast, covering the same size home in aluminum siding is the equivalent of salvaging the metal from 6 scrapped cars.
Aluminum can mimic highly sought after siding materials, such as vinyl, natural wood, and fiber cement, but at a much lower cost.
Aluminum Siding Repairs
You can expect aluminum siding to last at least 40 years if properly maintained and cleaned. However, depending on your home’s geographical location, your siding can experience wear and tear based on weather conditions. A few common reasons you might seek an aluminum siding repair include:
Dents and scratches
Holes and gaps
While modern aluminum siding is significantly more dent-resistant than it was in the past, dents can still be a problem depending on the area where your home is located. If you live in an area that is prone to storms, especially hail, denting can still be a problem.
That said, severely dented panels can be easily replaced with an aluminum siding repair. Scratching and fading paint are also common concerns, but these issues can be fixed by repainting using quality, color-matched house paint.
If damage to aluminum siding is severe, your contractor will recommend a siding replacement rather than repair. While more expensive, be aware that a siding replacement will improve your home’s resale value and you should see a return on investment on the project down the road.
How Cost-Effective is Aluminum Siding?
Aluminum siding is one of the most cost-effective siding materials on the market, at just $1.75 to $7 per square foot on average. You can expect it to last at least 40 years, which makes the investment well worth it.
Because of the lightweight panels, an aluminum siding installation is relatively simple. Replacing your home siding with aluminum can yield about a 77% rate of return on investment, depending on total cost and your home’s ultimate resale value.
Installing Aluminum Siding
There is a variety of panel sizes, as well as horizontal or vertical styles, when it comes time to install new aluminum siding. Discuss with your contractor the look and style you are going for with your home’s exterior. They will be able to recommend styles, textures, and panel types to match your preferences and budget.
Aluminum siding is typically packaged with all the necessary parts and pieces needed to install. This makes the installation process relatively quick and simple, which can lower installation and labor costs.
How to Install Aluminum Siding
Modernize recommends working with a professional siding contractor to install aluminum siding. However, if you are an experienced DIYer, here are the recommended steps to take to efficiently install the siding:
Use aluminum nails only.While you can use a standard hammer to install your aluminum siding, only use aluminum nails. The nails should have 1/8-inch shanks, heads at least 5/16 inch in diameter, and be able to penetrate backing by at least 3/4 inch.
Remove gutters.We recommend removing gutters, downspouts, and light fixtures prior to the siding replacement. You will have to reinstall the gutters after the replacement, or hire a gutter contractor to do so.
Use a smooth backing surface. To prevent your siding from looking bumpy and ensure the siding gives your home the best protection against the elements, you will need to create a smooth surface for which to attach the materials. For aluminum siding, 3/8 inch foam board insulation is a reliable backing option.
Nail down loose boards and remove damaged ones. If you are applying your siding over existing siding, you will need to nail down any loose boards and replace any rotten or damaged ones. This is crucial to prevent rot from spreading into your home.
Recaulk the siding. If you are repairing or installing partial siding, remove loose caulk. Then, re-caulk around windows and doors to prevent moisture penetration.
Seal up any cracks. Finally, seal all cracks to make the house airtight. While this is a necessary step, it will also help keep your energy bills lows.
Hiring a Siding Professional
If you are not experienced in installing home siding, we highly suggest finding a reliable home siding installer near you to ensure you are handling the project properly. A contractor will also help you get the project done for the best price, recommend types and styles of siding, and prep your home for the best energy efficiency. Using a professional will also prevent future repairs or replacement down the road due to improper installation. Talk to a Modernize contractor today and compare quotes from up to four local installers.
Aluminum Siding Maintenance Tips
While aluminum siding can last up to 40 years, it probably will not stay great-looking without regular siding maintenance. It may be helpful to think siding care in the same manner that you would care for your car. They are both smooth metal surfaces that need to be covered with paint, cleaned, and polished regularly to maintain their sheen.
To keep your aluminum siding looking great:
Pressure wash every 6 to 12 months. This will eliminate the faded or chalky look of oxidized paint and prevent dirt, dust, or mold from accumulating. Fill the plastic dip tube of the pressure washer with laundry detergent and your siding will remain bright and shiny for years. Use bleach and a soft bristle cleaning brush on any spots where mildew has accumulated. For a more eco-friendly option to bleach, try vinegar or borax. You will want to thoroughly rinse your siding before and after using any cleaning solution to prevent marks from where the solution dries.
Never scrape or sand. This type of siding is prone to scratching, so be careful never to scrape it. If you need to sand it, use 400-600 grit sandpaper.
Repaint every 5 years. For a quick color touchup and repair, use a color-matched spray paint.
Use a primer for unpainted siding. If your siding is bare (no colored enamel baked on), use a zinc oxide primer to keep your siding looking its best.
Use metal-specific fillers. If the need arises to patch an aluminum surface, use a filler that is specifically made for metal, like Bondo for cars.