How to redesign the house exterior?
While improving your house, you often concentrate on the inside. Such attitude is understandable but taking care of the house’s exterior may be beneficial for both its looks and your comfort of living. When you decide on exterior redesigning, you face the decision about scope and character of changes. After all, they will cost some bucks, so it’s always better to consider the decision. Whether to stick to building elevation or to expand a bit with some addition or another, to choose this material or that, may sound like a trivial task but it’s not. You’ll have to deal with results for the next couple of years if not decades so choice of high quality products is paramount in every undertaking. The same also applies to design and workmanship. Covering walls with siding or building a deck sounds great but may lose some of its appeal with unflattering project or poor execution. So before you happily jump on redesigning bandwagon, think carefully what it is, you actually need and how remodeling can address it. And of course, find experienced contractors, who will meet or better yet, exceed your expectations. With appropriate products and professional crew at hand, in no time you get desired results.
What siding type is best?
Questions about the best building material of one kind or another are usually bit tricky. Seeing them I instantly feel urge to ask “But actually best for what?” Each product has slightly different qualities that may work great under some particular circumstances but not so well under others. Think hot vs. cold climate or high vs. low moisture; add UV, rot or impact resistance; throw style and color into the mix… See what I mean? Various features may be relevant for siding installation in Mount Prospect but won’t be suitable in another area. As result, speaking of the best siding is simply counterproductive. You should do some research instead and learn about available materials and their characteristics. If, after some browsing, you’re still unsure what to decide on, contact your local siding contractors Naperville or elsewhere and speak with them about your needs and expectations. But getting back to the different types of siding you can choose from.
- One of the most recognizable products is vinyl siding. Its fame or, as some people might say, notoriety, comes from its beginnings on the market. Several decades ago, when it was introduced, manufacturers weren’t able to provide product of consistent quality. It used to fade quickly, had tendency to buckling and warping. Small wonder it wasn’t particularly appreciated. But times have changed and with advances of technology, such problems are long past. Of course, vinyl siding isn’t one uniform product with characteristics set in stone. As any other material, it can be further divided into different grades. Generally speaking, it comes in budget (of average quality), good (slightly more expensive and with better characteristics) and premium option (the most expensive of the three but of remarkable quality). Each grade has its own place but if you look for the most durable, colorfast option then it’s best to head for a premium. On top of that, vinyl it’s available in virtually endless choice of colors and styles and it’s easy to maintain.
- If vinyl isn’t to your liking then you may want to consider other choices, one of them being wood. It has timeless appeal, imparts unique look to your house and is probably the greenest siding material on the market. Wood siding is made of spruce, fir, pine, cedar or redwood and come in distinct profiles, which are clapboard (also known as bevel), shingles or shakes and board and batten. It’s easy to install and very energy efficient but it has some drawbacks. Only cedar has natural resistance to rot and insects due to content of essential oils. The rest types of wood require treatment and proper maintenance to stay in a good shape. That means the necessity of staining siding every two, three years and repainting it every four to five years. Another disadvantage comes with its limited resistance to fire.
- If you want to enjoy feel and look of wood but without unwanted bonuses like rot or insects and hassle of frequent maintenance, then turn your attention to fiber cement siding. The most popular brand, which nowadays becomes almost synonymous with this type of material, is James Hardie siding. It’s very versatile, coming in almost endless choice of colors and finishes that exquisitely mimics textures of other products, be it wood, brick or stone. Contrary to wood, fiber cement siding present excellent fire resistance, reflected in class 1A rating. Sounds like the best of both worlds, with its resemblance to wood and vinyl most desired characteristics. Unfortunately, it comes expensive with the price two, three times as high as vinyl. Color is another drawback, as it doesn’t permeate fiber cement all the way through, so you’ll need to paint chipped or damaged areas.
- Another siding material that gets you slightly closer to the real wood than James Hardie boards is engineered wood. Probably you recognize that particular product by the brand name – LP Smart Side. It’s composed of wood strands with addition of waxes, resins and other substances of binding and moisture and insects repelling qualities. It’s manufactured in six different styles and can be purchased unfinished so you can paint it yourself on chosen color. On top of that, it’s slightly less expensive and much easier to install or fix than James Hardie siding. That last characteristic make LP Smart Side better choice if you prefer doing small repairs yourself than hiring siding contractor in Aurora.
- If your house is situated in area known for heavy storms and hails, metal siding installation may be a good option. You can choose from steel or aluminum, the second being more popular in coastal areas due its resistance to rusting. Both are extremely durable, low maintenance and almost everything-proof (no worries about rot, bugs or rodents).
How to build a deck?
Building a deck doesn’t sound like something extremely complicated. After all, it’s ‘just’ a raised platform, freestanding or attached to main body of the building. So what could go wrong? People, who were badly injured, while the deck collapsed, can attest that quite a lot. So if you don’t have plenty of hands-on experience with similar DIY projects, better leave it to professionals, well versed in building decks and porches Chicago. That will not only ensure safety of the whole thing but will save you plenty of hassle and paperwork. For starters, you have to observe local building codes and get the necessary permits. You also need to learn, if there are any utility lines that can get in the way. Sounds easy and straightforward but often that’s the most troublesome part of the whole undertaking. That completed you can get to designing of your would-be deck. Basically, you can chose from two types of construction – cantilever or post and beam. First type relies on joists protruding from the main body of the building. However very popular, it may be unsafe if not properly waterproofed and flashed. Second type is supported by posts, which are anchored to the piers in the ground. Post and beams decks are often engineered and require help of contractors, experienced in deck building. While drafting a design you have to consider the type of material to be used in the project. Pressure-treated Wood is the most popular due to its availability and affordable pricing but there is no saying that you cannot chose wood-composite or PVC. You need to know that at the designing stage as each product has slightly different qualities (weight, need for treatment, use of special fasteners and so on), so you’ll adjust the project accordingly. When you have a plan ready, and all of the necessary materials at hand, it’s time to mark layout with strings and batter board. That completed, paint on the ground location of the posts and make the holes in marked places. Now you can pour concrete in the created holes, insert posts and fill the rest of space with gravel or start with concrete footers to which you can attach wooden posts. When the posts are in place it’s time to install support beams and build frame for the floor. When the stable frame is ready, you can get to railing and decking installation. Some homeowners may consider the idea of forgoing the first element, thinking it unnecessary. Keep in mind tough that Deck installed close to the ground may be better off without railing (think esthetics, finance, time and the like) but unfortunately, you may not. it’s there for your safety as even falling down from the construction several dozen centimeters high may end up with serious injury. So mount railing posts and you can finally move to decking installation. When you have it done the only thing that left, is attaching railings. Now your deck is ready but to facilitate getting to the ground you can consider adding stairs.
Pros of cable railings
Spacious deck is a great solution to enjoy outdoors without unwanted extras like mud, grass stains or crawlies. Often it isn’t very high off the ground so you may think of resigning from the railing. After all, if you want all of that posts, banisters and the rest you’d probably built a porch and be done with it. Nevertheless, safety considerations, which I mentioned earlier, should outweigh other aspects. While installing railing, you have several options to choose from. You can opt for wood, which is one of the cheapest materials but requires quiet a lot of maintenance. There is also composite or metal available, which are pricier and often don’t look particularly well with older properties. All of those railings are also made of pickets or balusters. By itself, there is nothing wrong with it. They are rather typical elements of many railings. Unfortunately they’re rather thick and don’t go well with admiring views from the deck. The good thing is that actually you don’t have to forsake esthetics or unobscured view to enjoy secure rest on your new deck. There is another option available. With cable railing Chicago, you can get best of both worlds. So how does this works? Cable used for such construction is much thinner than your average pickets, so they don’t interfere, when you want to have a good lookout. Usually they have anywhere between 1/8″ and 3/16″ in diameter when we speak of residential applications, which is exactly the case. Such cables are mounted on posts of steel, aluminum or wood. It may sound a bit dull and not very appealing but in reality, it’s quite the contrary. Cable railings offer clean lines and elegant design paired with extreme durability. They can be painted on various colors, attached to differently profiled posts, combined with tampered glass or decorative panels. If that’s not enough, cable railings can go vertically or horizontally. First option may prove a good choice when you or rather your kids would be better off without temptation of climbing. Cable railing, however more expensive than wood, is low maintenance, so you don’t have to bother for a long time with repainting, fixing and so on. It makes your deck looking bigger and more spacious. And of course, as mentioned earlier, offers unobstructed view. It’s a great choice for many reasons but for me personally the opportunity to admire comfortably surroundings is what seals the deal.