We’ve all seen the transformation that can happen when you replace the roof and old siding on a house. However, most pale in comparison to the Trumbull, Connecticut, house we’re talking about in today’s blog post.
Originally, this house was just another white house with a nice lawn in Trumbull, a quiet suburban town in Fairfield County. The homeowner had been thinking about a dramatic change for years. She wanted her Trumbull home to stand out and to better fit her style.
When she first contacted Gunner Roofing, she was dead set on having the exterior of her home be black. Unfortunately, with the siding material she wanted, black wasn’t an option. So our team got to work coming up with color alternatives in a siding type.
Ultimately, we felt the best alternative would be James Hardie fiber cement lap siding in the color of Iron Gray. When it comes to the “feel” of color options, Iron Gray is reminiscent of European cities. It’s a bold, romantic choice that when paired with white trim and a darkish roof can look amazing.
Our client was still hesitant. She had her heart set on black and just didn’t know if the gray would give her the effect that she wanted. But she decided to trust us.
During the consultation, we determined that some issues needed to be addressed for the project. The original Trumbull homeowner initially had installed lap cedar siding, and when he needed a siding replacement, instead of removing it and starting fresh, a layer of vinyl siding was added on top instead. Now, lap cedar siding is not bad in itself, and neither is vinyl siding when it comes to siding replacement.
In fact, both have their places and purposes as a siding type. Cedar siding is durable and energy-efficient, and vinyl siding is plentiful, relatively inexpensive, and easy to install. But layering two different types of siding (cedar siding and vinyl siding, in this case) instead of a uniform single siding replacement is asking for trouble at some point (as you’ll soon see). Not exactly setting yourself up for low maintenance, either.
This vinyl siding over cedar siding discovery came as a surprise to the current homeowner. It can be disappointing to deliver any bad news to homeowners, even when it’s a fixable issue. It can add additional project time (in this case, removing the original cedar siding after the layer of vinyl siding). However, we feel it is important to keep them informed throughout the duration of their home project.
It was fortunate she was having the cedar/vinyl siding replacement done because this improper placement and coverage (presumably by the previous homeowner or his contractor) was allowing in all sorts of animals. While we were removing the layers of the old siding, we uncovered birds and bees living inside the walls. We also spotted smaller animals attempting to travel in and out.
All of this was going on without the owner’s knowledge. Fortunately, we caught all of this before any real interior damage had taken place, either from the critters or other structure enemies like wind and moisture.
In addition to the double-siding application, there was a gap between the siding and the windows, another entry point for critters (and moisture) and the potential for damage to the frame and even the roof.
In order to remedy this situation, we had to add furring strips to some of the siding. Furring strips are typically long, thin pieces of wood or metal. This wood or metal acts as another level of protection; metal is thought to provide a bit better insulation than wood, but either one is a safe and adequate option. Once all of the wildlife was removed, we spray-foamed all of the open perimeters to ensure this wouldn’t happen again.
One of the most eye-catching features of this Fairfield County home is the porch columns. They draw your attention to the porch and give off luxurious vibes. They looked great with the original color and style of the siding, but since we were doing such an extensive remodel, we removed the porch columns and replaced them with new ones.
The new porch columns complemented the new siding and drew the whole project together. As you can see in the pictures that accompany this blog post, the home’s exterior came out great. The dark new siding material lined with white trim makes for the perfect contrast. It also matches up nicely with the dark roof.
Anyone who follows this blog knows how we feel about the James Hardie brand in general and James Hardie fiber cement lap siding in particular for a home’s exterior. While vinyl siding is a common and lower-cost choice for siding replacement, James Hardie fiber cement lap siding delivers long-term value that is effectively cost-effective and low maintenance itself.
With correct installation, James Hardie fiber cement lap siding is practically indestructible, your best bet for siding against elements like wind, moisture, fire, and pests. And rest assured, your James Hardie fiber cement lap siding will have proper installation. That’s because Gunner Roofing is Elite Preferred in the James Hardie Contractor Alliance, which means we’ve been vetted and approved as installers to the brand’s exacting specifications and standards for siding replacement.
By the way, James Hardie fiber cement lap siding is also commonly known as Hardie Board. Also, if you read or hear about Hardie Plank or Hardie Panel, these are essentially specific siding types of Hardie Board for vertical or horizontal installation. This can be reassuring that you’re dealing with a true James Hardie Board product, not an imitation.
As for the hesitant homeowner in Trumbull, she was thrilled with the final results. She ended up liking the siding color better than the black color she originally wanted. And with the new siding installed correctly, her home’s exterior became that much more low maintenance. So long to potential critter and moisture issues.
One of the biggest compliments we can get is when our clients refer us to their neighbors, friends, and family for remodel work. Our Trumbull client posted about her home project on social media. We received many phone calls as a result of those posts, and Gunner Roofing will be busy in the upcoming months renovating her friends’ houses.
Despite all of the issues, we were able to finish this project quickly and ahead of schedule. We worked as a team and got in and out as efficiently as possible for the homeowner.
This Fairfield County job was a big project for Gunner Roofing. Not just because of the dramatic difference that comes with a siding replacement, but because our client had faith in our company and our judgment as a seasoned contractor. We feel strongly about every problem having a solution, that it might take a little longer to find, but no matter what, we will get the job done.
We are so happy we were given the opportunity to work on this home and provide proper siding installation. We know the homeowner will enjoy it for a long time.
If you have a remodel project, like new siding to replace your old siding, drop us a line. We can guide you through the process of replacing the siding and the siding type and siding material needed for your home’s exterior. Of course, we could do your roof as well, and even windows and gutters. And we’ll happily provide a free estimate. Let us help!
Materials used (manufacturer): James Hardie
Materials used (type): Fiber cement lap
Materials used (color): Iron Gray
Project Cost: $35,000
Time to Complete: 9 days