Vinyl Siding: Pros and Cons

As a homeowner, you are often given freedom of choice when it comes to the materials that make up your exterior. This goes for your roof, but also your siding as well, as there are a number of siding materials that you can choose from. However, there is one siding material that clearly reigns supreme here in America. In today’s blog, we’ll be taking a close look at the most popular siding material in the nation – vinyl siding – and exploring its pros and cons. If that sounds interesting, keep reading below for more information!

Vinyl Siding

Without question the most ubiquitous siding material for homes across America, vinyl siding remains a popular choice among homeowners and contractors for a number of reasons. In any American neighborhood, you are almost guaranteed to see vinyl siding – want to know why this is the case? Keep reading below for its advantages, and inevitable disadvantages.

Pros

  • Value – For homeowners looking for a cost-effective and budget-friendly option, vinyl siding may be exactly what you’re looking for. Compared to many of its competitors, vinyl siding is guaranteed to give you the most bang for your buck. Even with an affordable price, vinyl siding holds up quite well on its own, and if installed properly, can last you a long time.
  • Appearance – No matter what your home looks like, vinyl siding is sure to be a suitable, reliable choice. This is due to the fact that there is a wide variety of styles and colors to choose from. If you’re looking for a versatile option, vinyl siding may be precisely what you’re looking for. Without a doubt, there is a style of vinyl siding out there that is perfect for your home.

Cons

  • Durability- As mentioned, when vinyl siding is properly installed in your home, it can last you a long time, but not exactly forever. In fact, despite its benefits, vinyl siding is not known to be the most durable siding material out there, as it can become vulnerable to the elements easier than other siding materials.
  • Home Value – Perhaps due to the fact that it is extremely common, vinyl siding isn’t known for adding tremendous value to your home as much as other materials. Though this is not a major setback per se, it may be of consequence for homeowners looking to add more value to their homes.

Need Help With Your Roofing? – Call E.M. Snow!

Are you looking to protect your home with a strong exterior this Winter? Look no further than us here at E.M. Snow! We have completed countless projects throughout the greater Boston area. Get in touch with us by giving us a call at 781-893-4546 or by submitting a contact form. We look forward to hearing from you and getting started on your project!

A Look at CertainTeed Roofing & Siding

Though we’ve worked with a variety of products over the years, the team at E.M. Snow has delivered excellent results with CertainTeed. Offering top-of-the-line roofing and siding products, CertainTeed has been at the forefront of countless home improvement jobs we’ve taken over the years. In this blog article, we’ll take a closer look at the CertainTeed brand and what it can offer to both homeowners and contractors. If that sounds interesting, keep reading below!

Introduction to CertainTeed

CertainTeed was founded in 1904 under the name General Roofing Manufacturing Company, meaning that it has been a mainstay in the industry for over 110 years! Since their inception, the brand has persisted, developed, and evolved into what it is today. Now, in 2021, the company looks ahead optimistically toward a bright future, as it is germinated into a manufacturing force of nature, offering the likes of fencing, decking, railing, trim, insulation and ceilings! With so much to offer to both homeowners and contractors, the CertainTeed has inevitably become a force of nature in the building products industry. This also applies to the workforce, where CertainTeed has grown exponentially since its founding, now boasting more than 6,300 employees and a hefty number of manufacturing plants throughout North America and Canada.

A Closer Look at What CertainTeed Offers

Simply put – CertainTeed offers a lot! As mentioned, they specialize in roofing and siding products, but also bring fencing, decking, and even insulation to the table. They are best known, however, for their roofing and siding products, so we will be focusing on those in this blog!

When we used CertainTeed here at E.M. Snow, we are using it exclusively for our roofing or siding projects. Why is this the case? Well, CertainTeed is proven to produce excellent roofing and siding products!

Roofing Products

CertainTeed offers roofing materials for projects both residential and commercial. They offer Landmark line of asphalt shingles as well as other variations, like Grand Manor, Carriage House, and Belmont. If you’re looking to outfit and armor your home with asphalt shingle roofing, CertainTeed is always a reliable choice! You can view a full list of their asphalt shingle types here, and see their gallery here.

Siding Products

Looking for siding? CertainTeed has you covered! They offer vinyl, cedar impression, and even stone veneer siding! It’s hard to go wrong with any of these options, as you are guaranteed to see an increase in curb appeal! You can view the full list of their siding products here and a gallery here.

Looking to Have CertainTeed Products Installed?

Need home improvement services from the experts? Look no further than us here at E.M. Snow! We have completed countless projects throughout the greater Boston area. Get in touch with us by giving us a call at 781-893-4546. We look forward to hearing from you and getting started on your project!

Product Spotlight: James Hardie Siding

When it comes to siding materials, James Hardie is one of the most trusted names on the market. This is because James Hardie continues to offer a durable, easy-to-install product without breaking the bank – making it a popular choice among homeowners and contractors alike.

In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at James Hardie’s siding, and why it remains one of the most prominent options out there.

The Benefits of James Hardie Siding

  • Durability and Longevity

For homeowners, these might be two of the most attractive strengths of James Hardie siding. From the moment James Hardie siding is installed on your home, it’s unlikely you’ll have to worry about it – at least for a long time.

Even here in New England, where weather can get violent and erratic, James Hardie siding is proven to protect you, your family, and your home from the conditions brought about by all four seasons.

  • Variety for Days

There is no doubt that James Hardie siding comes in an impressive array of styles and colors. No matter the appearance of your home, it’s more than likely that James Hardie siding will suit it well.

Just a few styles that James Hardie has to offer:

– HardiePlank Lap Siding

– HardieShingle Siding

– Hardie Textured Panels

– HardiePanel Verticle Siding

This does not even include the variety of colors to choose from! With so many options, James Hardie will definitely capture the essence and character of your home.

  • Confident Installation

Over the course of our long and storied history, E.M. Snow’s craftsmen have installed James Hardie siding on a plethora of homes throughout the Greater Boston Area. Since James Hardie siding is so common across the country, homeowners can relax knowing that the most contractors have familiarity with this product.

In conclusion, if you are a homeowner, there are a multitude of reasons to consider James Hardie siding for your home! It doesn’t end with the above reasons – see what benefits James Hardie can provide for you!

Contact Us Today

Contact our team at E.M. Snow Inc. today to schedule an appointment with one of our siding experts! Our team has the tools and knowledge to repair or replace your siding as needed. Siding repairs are extremely difficult during the colder winter months, so don’t wait to schedule your consultation! You can contact our team today by calling us at  (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your siding installation needs!

Before Siding & Windows

Signs Your Siding Needs to be Replaced

The siding on your home does a lot more than just look good. Having a home that looks good is important, of course, but so is having a home that’s dry and free from unwanted pests! Keep an eye out for these telltale signs that your siding needs to be repaired or replaced. The sooner you identify the warning signs and schedule an appointment with a siding contractor, the better protected your home will be! 

Visible Damage 

Vinyl siding is very durable, but damage can still occur. Once your vinyl siding has signs of damage it will be less effective at protecting your home against various weather conditions. There are three major types of damage that can occur to your vinyl siding. First, warped siding. Vinyl siding can expand in different temperatures and weather conditions. If your homes siding was hung too tightly, this will cause warped siding that may look like it’s buckling away from the home. The only way to fix this is to replace the vinyl using a contractor who understands the importance of hanging the siding lose enough to allow for movement overtime. 

Second, your siding can develop holes that impact the effectiveness against weather conditions. The areas of siding with holes will need to be replaced. The most common cause of holes in your siding is animals trying to find their way into the home for shelter. 

Finally, your siding may have cracks. Heat, cold, hail, rain, and even debris being thrown up by your lawn mower, can all cause a crack in the siding. Inspect your siding for cracks at least twice per year to schedule a repair before it becomes worse.  

High Utility Bills

High heating and cooling bills are frustrating to say the least. Of course, it sucks to spend more money than you think you should be to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. If you’re battling high utility bills and can’t seem to find the cause, it might be your siding! 

Excess Moisture in the Home 

Excess moisture in your home is never a good thing. That moisture can promote mold growth that’s harmful to the health of anyone inside the home. Moisture in the home can be related to your roof, windows, water lines, siding, and more. It’s worth checking out the current state of your siding if you’re trying to determine the cause of excess moisture in your home.

Contact Us Today 

Contact our team at E.M. Snow Inc. today to schedule an appointment with one of our siding experts! Our team has the tools and knowledge to repair or replace your siding as needed. Siding repairs are extremely difficult during the colder winter months, so don’t wait to schedule your consultation! You can contact our team today by calling us at  (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your siding installation needs!

Spring Home Maintenance, cleaning gutter system

Spring Home Maintenance

With spring arriving in Massachusetts, it is important to keep up with your home maintenance in order to keep your home protected through the season! However, it can be tough to know which facets of your home’s exterior deserve the most attention, which is why our team is here to provide a guide on the proper spring maintenance that you should be performing on your home this summer. If you’re interested in learning more, keep reading below for more information!

Clean Your Gutters & Downspouts

First off, one of the most important pieces of spring maintenance for your home is cleaning your gutters & downspouts. Your gutter system serves a very important purpose, particularly in the springtime, by routing water away from your home’s foundation & siding, keeping it protected from water damage. This means that keeping the system free of debris & flowing freely is essential to the health of your home. If your gutter system is clogged, water will back up over the sides of the system, spilling onto the home & ground beneath the system where it can end up causing significant damage to your home or foliage. Be sure to check your gutter system each spring and ensure that there are no clogs in the system.

Inspect Your Roof

Another good piece of home maintenance advice is to check your roof for damage. Once the snow has melted, you may be able to spot damage on your roofing system. Perhaps your flashing has rusted from the moisture. Or your shingle system may have been damaged in the fall or winter by branches. Springtime will provide you with an opportunity to examine the system and ensure that your roof is in good repair for the spring & summer showers!

Check Windows & Doors for Drafts & Rot

Finally, it is a good idea to check the frames of your windows & threshold of your door for signs of rot, or drafts. The constant moisture that sits on your sills and threshold each winter can often cause moisture damage, particularly as it thaws and refreezes continuously. This means that come spring, it is a good idea to take a look around your home for signs of rot in the system, ensuring that everything is well maintained for the warmer months!

Contact Us Today

For homeowners who need to replace their roof, siding, or windows this spring, our team at E.M. Snow is ready to assist! Reach out to our team today by calling us at (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your exterior remodeling needs!

Window condensation, hand wiping away moisture

Why Are My Windows Condensated?

Condensation on your windows is often a regular occurrence. For the most part, it is merely science, as the cold air outside meets the humid air inside. However, some condensation issues should be addressed. Minor condensation can be typical, but you may also experience seal failure and experience severe condensation between your windowpanes. Knowing why you have condensated windows and whether it can be harmful is an essential step in understanding if it is necessary to solve the potential problem.

Is it Condensation or Seal Failure?

A standard amount of condensation is not the result of a damaged or failed window. Instead, it stems from the amount of moisture within the interior of your home. If you see condensation on the outside of the window, your window is working properly as well. When condensation builds up between the panes of the window, a seal failure is the most probable cause. This is a problem that you will need to address.

The issue with a seal failure is that it is no longer insulating your home correctly. Air makes its way in from the outside and your home’s warm air can escape to the exterior. It can even cause an increase in your utility bills, which is especially noticeable if seals have failed on multiple windows. When condensation builds up between the panes of your window, there is no quick fix. Unfortunately, a seal failure resulting in condensation means that a new window is necessary.

Why is there Condensation?

If the condensation on the interior of your windows is not a result of a seal failure, it is simply an indication of excess moisture in the building. As previously mentioned, condensation occurs when the cool air outside meets the humid and warm air on the other side of the windowpane.

The causes of humidity in a home are often the result of simply living: cooking, cleaning, bathing, or running the a/c or heat can all introduce moisture into the air. Even the construction of the home and its materials can play a part in the interior humidity levels. All of these factors play a role in how much condensation builds up on your windows.

Is Condensation Harmful?

In small amounts, condensation does not cause harm. However, if your windows have continuous condensation or excessive amounts, there is a potential for damage. If condensation continually drips down the window to reach the sill, water damage can occur. It can also damage the paint, drywall, insulation, and nearby furniture. Taking care of condensation before it comes to this point is ideal.

Is it Possible to Minimize Window Condensation?

There are ways to reduce the humidity in your home, thus reducing condensation. For example, in colder months, your ceiling fans should turn clockwise to circulate the warm air better. Ventilating fans should be used for cooking, bathing, and doing dishes. Let some warm air out periodically to allow some of the humidity to escape. Utilize a dehumidifier regularly. Hang materials that are designed to pull moisture from the air throughout your home. You might even consider replacing your current windows with newer, more efficient, double-paned versions. The regular implementation of these actions can help you to reduce humidity in the interior and condensation on the windows.

Contact Us Today

If you’re ready to replace the windows in your home this winter, our team at E.M. Snow Inc. is ready to assist! Reach out to our team today by calling us at (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your remodeling needs!

Colorful Townhouse Vinyl Siding

Benefits of Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is the most commonly installed siding material in North America. It has long reigned as contractors and homeowners’ favorite choice because of a number of factors that have led to its widespread distribution and manufacturing, making it accessible and low-cost, which has bolstered its popularity. However, it offers a number of benefits that truly make it a fantastic siding option! If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of vinyl siding, keep reading below for more information!

Economical

The first benefit of vinyl siding is that it is relatively inexpensive in comparison to other siding options. Due to its widespread manufacturing, vinyl siding is widely accessible, which makes it a less expensive siding option than some. If you’re looking to replace your home’s siding on a budget, vinyl siding is arguably the best option you can choose!

Durability

Another reason that vinyl siding became so popular in the first place is that in addition to being low-cost, it is also extremely durable, particularly in comparison to other, older siding options. Vinyl siding is constructed to withstand inclement weather, including rain, as well as heavy winds and hail. Furthermore, it is moisture resistant and won’t rot, meaning you will never need to worry about your siding eroding off of your home. If you’re looking for a siding material that you can install and never need to worry about, vinyl siding is a fantastic choice!

Aesthetics

Due to its widespread manufacturing, there are many companies creating a wide array of color options for vinyl siding. This means that no matter what color of siding you’re looking for, you can always find the perfect shade to match your home’s exterior. If you’re looking for a particular color for your home’s siding, vinyl offers the best chance at finding the shade you’re looking for!

Energy Efficient

Another reason that many homeowners elect to install vinyl siding is that it can help to improve your home’s energy efficiency by helping to insulate your home. For homeowners who are looking for a bit of additional insulation out of their home’s siding, there are insulated vinyl siding options that can help further insulate your home, leading to significant savings on your home’s energy bills!

Contact Us Today

If you’re interested in installing new vinyl siding on your home this spring, our team at E.M. Snow Inc. is ready to assist! Reach out to our team today by calling us at (781) 893-4546 or by filling our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your remodeling services!

Colorful Fall Leaves in Gutter

Fall Home Maintenance

Holiday season has arrived, which means that colder, harsher weather is coming into view, and the days are getting shorter. With the fall will be in full swing soon! This article can serve as a quick exterior fall home maintenance checklist with a focus on windows, doors, roofing, siding and gutters to ensure the home’s ready and protected.

Windows

  • It’s time for that regular cleaning & inspection where you simply wipe them down to see any potential damage to the frames and sashes. 
  • Any repairs needed? Now’s the time to be proactive and make those repairs which were put off during spring and summer. 
  • Weatherstripping is an easy way to seal window areas and trap heat inside where it belongs (while lowering your winter energy bill). Also, repair any worn out rubber seals. 

Doors

  • Check not only the doors themselves, but everything directly around them like outdoor faucets, patio furniture which should be covered or come inside, doorway lighting, decks, steps and walkways.
  • Repair or replace anything that’s breaking down in the frame like rubber sealing and consider weather stripping, using door sweeps, etc., to conserve heat. 

Roofing

  • Schedule a roof inspection if one wasn’t conducted in the spring or summer. These are essential and required under most roofing warranties. Inspectors will spot a large assortment of potential problems most homeowners are unaware of.
  • Check any attic areas to see how insulation is holding up and whether the ventilation is blocked or hampered in some way. For those in much colder climates where snow and ice accumulation is a serious issue, this is a critical inspection. 

Siding

  • Check first around windows and doors, then the rest of the home to spot any loose siding which could let the cold air, water and moisture create problems for interior walls. If they aren’t addressed, the siding may expand during freezing temperatures and get worse.
  • Look for any cracking, warping, rot and other general signs of siding degradation.

Gutters

  • After the leaves have fallen check those gutters to ensure the home’s drainage system is working properly! Once it starts raining and getting icy or slippery, being on the roof is far more dangerous. And, once winds begins picking up being on ladders is also sketchy.
  • Get any damage promptly repaired and be sure fascia boards are in good shape.

Contact Us Today

While this isn’t an exhaustive or comprehensive list by any means, these are the basics of getting busy with fall home maintenance before any small issues or problems become big ones once the weather hits. If you need help preparing your home’s exterior for the fall season, our team at E.M. Snow is ready to assist! Reach out to us today by calling us at (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your exterior remodeling needs!

Benefits of Fiber Cement Siding

Vinyl siding has long reigned supreme in the Northeast as the premier siding option, but there is another option that has been gaining in popularity as of late, Fiber-Cement Siding. Fiber cement siding provides a number of benefits to homeowners who choose to have it installed on their homes. Take a look at its benefits below!

Longevity:

Fiber Cement siding has a much longer lifespan than vinyl siding. While vinyl siding typically lasts for 20-30 years, fiber cement generally lasts for at least five decades, and potentially even longer with proper maintenance. This makes it one of the longest lasting siding materials on the market.

Durability:

Fiber Cement siding is renowned for its durability. It’s composition makes that it non-flammable, resistant to cracking, rotting, swelling, breaking, extreme weather, pests, and anything else Mother Nature can throw at it. It’s seamless design also means that it’s very resistant to moisture damage, which Eastern Massachusetts residents will appreciate, living so close to the ocean in such a windy state.

Appearance:

Fiber Cement siding is highly customizable.  It is available in a variety of color options straight from your manufacturer, which in our case is James Hardie. In addition to the factory colors, you can also order primed fiber cement boards that can painted on site. While it won’t last as long as a factory finish, painting your siding yourself should hold up almost as long as the factory, and it allows you to customize your siding any way you choose. In addition to the color options, fiber cement siding is also available in a variety of texture options. If you love the look of natural wooden siding, but you don’t want to deal with the damage it receives from the elements, you can opt to install fiber cement siding that has a natural wooden look.

Cost

This next benefit may seem a bit misleading. Fiber Cement siding has a higher installation cost than vinyl siding.  It is more expensive to produce, and more difficult to install, which makes it at the more expensive siding option at face value. However, what makes fiber cement such an enticing option from an economic stand point is its longevity. Fiber Cement can easily last twice as long as vinyl siding, and while it is a more expensive option, the fact that you will likely only need to install it once over the life of your home.

Eco-Friendly

While the manufacturing of vinyl siding requires the use of fossil fuels, fiber cement siding is made from partially recycled materials, which means it is a green option if you are looking to replace your siding with a more sustainable material. Furthermore, its longevity means it doesn’t fill up landfills like vinyl siding, and although the industry is still developing, it appears that there is potential for fiber cement to be recycled at the end of its lifespan. All-in-all, it is a far more environmentally friendly option than vinyl siding.

Contact Us

Interested in learning more about the our fiber cement siding installation services? Reach out to our team at (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our online contact form. We look forward to hearing from you!

Home with half wood, half vinyl siding, and a beautiful wooden deck

Fiber Cement vs. Vinyl Siding

Here at E.M. Snow Inc we offer two kinds of siding: James Hardie’s Fiber Cement siding, and CertainTeed’s Vinyl siding. If it’s time to replace your siding, you may be comparing your options, but are still unsure of which one you should use for your home.  Both kinds of siding offer distinct advantages over one another, and this guide will help you explore which option is best for your needs!

Fiber Cement Siding

When it comes to customization, there are few better options than fiber cement.  It can be designed to look like wood or stone, among other materials, which makes it a very versatile option.

Fiber cement is also more fire resistant than vinyl siding because it’s made from a mixture of cement and cellulose fibers.  This makes it harder to burn or melt than vinyl siding.  Fiber cement is also far more impact resistant than vinyl siding, which is very thin and easy to puncture.

The other major advantage that fiber cement offers over vinyl siding is it’s eco-friendliness.  Whereas vinyl sidings creation process requires the use of fossil fuels, fiber cement is made of more sustainable materials, making it the more eco-friendly option.

Vinyl Siding

While fiber cement is slightly more customizable, vinyl siding also offers the opportunity to customize its appearance to resemble other siding materials.  However, fiber cement is still the more durable option, and if you are trying to give your home siding that resembles stone or brick, fiber cement will look far more realistic than vinyl.

One major advantage that vinyl siding offers over fiber cement is its energy efficiency.  While it is a close competition between the two, vinyl siding edges out fiber cement due to the fact that vinyl siding can be fitted with extra insulation, although it’s not a standard option on all vinyl siding.  However, if you opt to get the siding that comes fitted with it, it will be more efficient than fiber cement.

Finally, when it comes to cost, vinyl siding is certainly the more economical option.  If you are trying to replace your siding on a budget, vinyl siding is a better option than fiber cement.  While fiber cement arguably looks better than vinyl siding does, it is considerably more expensive, which can make vinyl siding the more attractive option for homeowners.

Which One Should I Choose?

Both fiber cement and vinyl siding offer advantages over the other.  Vinyl is more affordable and has the potential to be more energy efficient, while fiber cement is more visually appealing and environmentally sustainable.  Ultimately, both options are great choices to re-side your home.  The option you choose is mostly dependent on your budget and aesthetic tastes. If you need more help deciding which one is right for you, reach out to our team at E.M. Snow Inc at (781) 893-4546 to discuss the options we have available! Our highly-skilled team will be happy to provide you with more direction to help you make sure you’re thrilled with the product you decide upon!