Tag: exterior siding

  • A Guide to Choosing Paint for Exterior Siding

    Courtesy of HouseLogic.com

    Courtesy of HouseLogic.com

    Choosing the right type of siding for your home can be difficult on its own, but then there comes the time when you have to choose the paint for your siding.  In order to choose the best one for your home, you need to consider the coating of your home, the climate in which you live, and what type of aesthetic you want.

    According to HouseLogic, "Done right, an exterior paint job can last 10 years; stain needs to be reapplied more often, anywhere from two to 10 years, depending on the type of stain."

    An important part to the longevity of an exterior paint job is how the surface is prepped before painting. However, what paint or stain you choose is almost equally important, according to the site.

    As far as pricing: "Expect to pay $35 to $45 per gallon for conventional premium paint or stain. “Green,” or zero-VOC, products run $45 to $55 per gallon. A gallon covers 350 to 400 square feet, so figure on about 8 gallons to cover an average two-story, 30-by-40-foot house. Most paint jobs require a primer and two topcoats."

    Here is an overview of the types of paints and stains you can choose from, courtesy of HouseLogic:

    Acrylic latex paints

    Acrylic latex is the favored choice, both of pros and do-it-yourselfers. These water-based paints come in an endless range of colors and three popular finishes. Flat paint, commonly used indoors, offers the least protection against the elements. Satin, with its slightly higher sheen, is a good choice for wood siding. Semi-gloss or gloss offers the most protection and works well on high-use areas like window and door trim.

    Pros: Latex paints are easy to work with and clean up with water. The paint film remains flexible even after drying, so it breathes and moves slightly to accommodate changes in temperature, or even house settling, without cracking. In addition to wood, latex can also cover siding made of vinyl, aluminum, fiber cement, stucco, brick, and metal.

    Cons: Unless you’re using “green” products, expect to smell paint fumes from the moment you open the can until the paint dries completely. These odors, produced by volatile organic compounds, are toxic in high quantities and contribute to air pollution.

    In general, latex paint doesn’t bond well to previous coats of oil paint unless you prepare the surface very well. That means stripping nearly all the old paint off the wood first, a time-consuming and expensive job. It’s often smarter to stick with oil if you’ve got oil, and latex if you’ve got latex.

    Costs: $35 to $45 a gallon for premium latex paint; $45 to $55 a gallon for premium low- or zero-VOC paints.

    Oil-based paints

    Oil paint, long prized for its durability, used to be the gold standard for exteriors and some high-traffic house trim such as handrails, doors, and floors. But these days it plays second fiddle to latex.

    Pros: Oil paints dry hard and get harder with time. That makes them perfect for high-traffic uses: porch floors, steps, metal handrails, even your front door.

    Cons: Over time, oil paint can become brittle and crack, producing an “alligator” look. (Some people actually like the effect.) Oil paint can never be applied on top of old latex paint; the two won’t bond properly.

    Toxic solvents are required to clean brushes and other equipment that come in contact with oil paint. The average can of oil paint has more VOCs than a can of conventional latex paint. Low-VOC oil paint is available, but even these products contain more VOCs than low-VOC latex paint.

    Costs: $35 to $45 a gallon for premium oil-based paint; $45 to $55 a gallon for premium low-VOC paints.

    Exterior stain

    Stain is the choice when you want to let some of the natural features of the wood shine through but still shield your investment from the elements. Cedar, redwood, and other beautiful varieties cry out for stain. As a rule, stain isn’t as protective as paint; sunlight and weather can still penetrate the stain, causing the wood to age and discolor.

    Like paints, stains come in latex and oil-based versions. You don’t want to cover an oil with a latex stain, or vice versa, unless the old coat of stain has aged and weathered to the point where the new coat can adhere.

    Stains come in three finishes:

    • Clear stains are extremely translucent. You’ll see more of the wood, but you’ll need to reapply as often as every two to three years. Clear stains can still vary greatly in appearance, so you will want to experiment on a scrap piece of shingle to choose your favorite product. Over time, the wood under clear stain will continue to discolor, forcing you to eventually move to the next category.
    • Semi-transparent stains are bulkier and offer more protection than clear stains, because they contain a hint of pigment. Color choices are not nearly as numerous as those for latex paint, but there’s still a broad range of options. Reapply in five to seven years.
    • Opaque stains behave more like paint; they offer maximum protection and hide much of the wood’s look. But they still allow the texture to show through. These come in many colors, but choose carefully—if you want to change colors next time around, you’ll need to sand the surface completely. Opaques last 10 years or more.

    Pros: Stains don’t require extensive surface prep the way paint does. Just wash, dry, scrape any raised or cracked stain, and re-stain with a brush. You don’t need a primer and may be able to squeak by with one coat.

    Cons: Depending on type of stain, requires frequent reapplication.

    Costs: $35 to $45 a gallon.

     

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your exterior siding, siding repair and siding installation needs. Call us today at 215-453-9180 for your FREE estimate.

  • Siding Tips: Fiber Cement Siding

    Courtesy of BobVila.com

    Courtesy of BobVila.com

    Fiber cement siding has become popular for multiple reasons: it can be sustainable, it's low maintenance, inexpensive and long-lasting.

    Here is some more information on fiber-cement siding, courtesy of BobVila.com, to see if it is a good fit for  you.

    Maintenance and Longevity
    Each of the major manufacturers offers a line of fiber cement siding that meets or exceeds standards set forth by the American Society for Testing and Materials. The siding stands up, not only to the elements, but also to hazards like insects and noise pollution. After 15 years, refinishing becomes necessary, but maintenance duties are light otherwise. Indeed, manufacturers’ warranties attest to the product’s durability. 30- to 50-year warranties are the norm.

    Sustainability
    CertainTeed, one of the leading manufacturers of fiber cement siding, says it only sources wood fiber harvested from managed forests. Another maker of fiber cement siding, Nichiha, joins CertainTeed in using fly ash—a waste residue of coal combustion—rather than silica. Nichiha also boasts of observing a host of best practices in their production process, sourcing material locally, recapturing 95% of the water used in its facilities, and recycling 100% of the scrap material it creates.

    James Hardie, the founder of fiber cement in the 1970s and world leader in the category, is equally committed to sustainability—sourcing 90% of their materials from regional suppliers, and employing waste minimization and solid waste recycling technologies to support Zero to Landfill initiatives.  While cement, water, sand and cellulose fibers are used for Hardie siding products, fly ash is not: the company believes that it adversely impacts the durability of fiber cement.

    Architectural Appeal
    Fiber cement siding comes in a variety of designs: Lap, plank, vertical, shake, curved-shake and geometric patterns are all available. A host of textures can be found as well, and the siding may be colored to virtually any hue the homeowner desires. Some fiber cement siding products are made to resemble wood, while others imitate the look of natural fieldstone, stacked flagstone, or brick.

    Affordability
    The upfront expenses associated with fiber cement siding are not inconsiderable, being that professional installation is a must. However, the ongoing maintenance costs are minimal. You can expect to pay out for refinishing work about every 15 years or so, but the lion’s share of the overall cost will come at the beginning of the product’s 50-plus-year lifespan.

    Versus Wood or Vinyl Siding
    Wood siding boasts a timeless beauty, and many homeowners value the way its appearance gradually changes in subtle ways. You can save on installation by doing the work yourself, but wood siding products are often expensive to buy, and over time, the material demands a high level of maintenance.

    Though colorfast and resistant to insects and rot, vinyl siding is not maintenance free: It’s vulnerability to weather damage makes occasional repairs necessary. The price tag is low enough to have enticed many, and another big selling point is its relative ease of installation.

    If your priority is good looks, then you can’t go wrong with wood. If budget is your main concern, look no further than vinyl. Consider fiber cement siding if you are looking for a long-lasting, low-maintenance material that performs well and doesn’t look half bad, either.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of you fiber cement siding, siding repair, and siding installation needs.  Call us today at 215.453.9180 for your FREE estimate!

  • Siding 101: Brick Repairs

    brick-repairs

    It's important to inspect brick foundations, walls and chimneys routinely. The way to tell if brick needs replacing is pretty simple, "if there’s mortar missing or wearing away in spots, a little tuck-pointing is in order" (According to BobVila.com).

    Spalling, which is when the face of the brick chips off easily, is fairly common. According to BobVila.com, spalling occurs because the mortar is too hard to expand and contract with cold and warm temperatures at the same rate as the brick, which is softer.

    In order to fix spalled brick, the brick needs to be removed and replaced.  And, obviously you want to try to match the color of the existing brick as closely as possible so you can't notice the repairs.

    If you live in a historic home, it may be more difficult to find replacement brick that matches.  You may want to check local salvage yards or deconstruction contractor.  Also, according to BobVila.com, "Historic district commisions have come up with lots of new tricks for dyeing and distressing new brick and mortar, and they’re usually more than happy to supply homeowners with the right recipe for a good match."

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your exterior siding needs.  Call us today at  215-453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

  • How to Clean Vinyl Siding

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    Though vinyl siding can weather a lot, it is a good idea to routinely clean it to make sure it lasts.

    According to BobVila.com, "Because it is an exterior product, vinyl siding can accumulate a host of dirt, grime, and stains on account of things like pollen, bird and insect droppings, spider webs and rust."

    You're in luck because it is quite simple to clean vinyl siding.  According to the Vinyl Siding Institute via BobVila.com, "the best way is to use a soft cloth or an ordinary long-handled, soft-bristle brush."  To prevent streaks, wirk from the bottom to the top and thoroughly rinse any cleaning solution as you work.

    Here are some effective cleaning solution options you can use, courtesy of BobVila.com:

    • 70% water, 30% white vinegar makes a great all-purpose cleanser that removes light mold and mildew stains.
    • For a stronger solution, mix together one-third cup powdered laundry detergent, two-thirds cup powdered household cleaner, one quart liquid laundry bleach and one gallon of water.
    • If you are concerned about landscaping, use a solution comprised of one gallon of water mixed with one cup oxygen bleach in a bucket. The oxygen bleach will clean the vinyl without damaging your landscaping.
    • Simple Green offers an environmentally friendly cleaner that is specially formulated for use on vinyl and aluminum siding, stucco, terra cotta roof tiles and painted wood. The non-toxic biodegradable concentrate can be used manually or with pressure washers.
    • General household cleansers (e.g., Fantastik, Murphy’s Oil Soap, Windex and Lysol) can be used on tough dirt and stains, including those created by top soil, grass, grease, oil, rust, crayon, ink and bubble gum. Rust stains may be removed using products designed for this purpose (e.g., Super Iron Out and Instant Rust Out).
    • Another effective way to clean vinyl siding is by using a pressure washer, although some manufacturers advise against it, and other manufacturers recommend a limited amount of pressure. If using a pressure washer, be sure to keep the stream at eye level and pointed straight at the siding, not at an angle. That way, you won’t drive water in behind the siding. Use caution when using a pressure washer around openings like windows, doors, and plumbing connections.

    Don't use products that contain organic cleaning solvents, undiluted chlorine bleach, nail polish remover, liquid grease remover, or furniture polishes or cleaners, as they might damage the siding's surface.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your vinyl siding, exterior siding, siding repair, and siding installation needs. Call us today at 215.453.9180 for your FREE estimate.

  • Spring Maintenance Musts

    Courtesy of BobVila.com

    Courtesy of BobVila.com

    It's finally spring! And the better weather can also reveal some home maintenance work that needs to be done. However, spring chores don't have to be miserable.

    Follow this simple routine, courtesy of BobVila.com to check everything off your home maintenance list:

    Roof

    With binoculars and a keen eye, you can generally spot roof problems. Cracked or missing shingles should be replaced, and if you see any shingle-shift, it may mean you need to install new fasteners. Look also for buildup of pine needles and other debris in those valleys between roof peaks.

    Exterior Walls

    Whether you have wood siding, stucco or brick, look for damaged areas, especially under eaves and near gutter downspouts. Water stains normally indicate that your gutters are not adequately containing roof runoff. With wood, check for any damaged areas or openings that clear the way for carpenter ants, woodpeckers and other critters.

    Chimney

    If you have a masonry chimney, check the joints between bricks or stones. Have any fallen out, or is vegetation growing? Both can be evidence of water infiltration. Efflorescence, a white calcium-like deposit, is another sign of trouble.

    Foundation

    When inspecting poured-concrete foundations, keep your eyes peeled for cracks. If cracks in the foundation exist, routine caulking won’t do the job. You'll want to hire a foundation specialist, who can employ a two-part epoxy injection system that will bond those cracks chemically.

    Windows

    Leakage around windows will admit warm summer air and let cooled indoor air escape, so be sure to check that any caulking and weather stripping you have in place has remained intact. If you experienced condensation inside the glass on double- or triple-glazed windows during the winter months, that could mean the weather seal has been compromised, in which case either the glass or the window will need to be replaced.

    Spring-clean your windows—inside and out—with a store-bought or homemade window cleaner (one cup rubbing alcohol, one cup water and a tablespoon of white wine vinegar will work just fine). Apply cleaner with either a squeegee or a soft cloth. If screens were on all winter, remove and clean them with mild detergent. Lay them on a dry surface (e.g., a driveway) to air-dry before putting them back on.

    Attend to Leaks

    Spring is a good time to check for leaky faucets, clogged drains and sweaty pipes. Check under kitchen and bathroom sinks to make sure connections on pipes and hoses are secure and sealed. Look for water stains around the dishwasher and check washer machine hoses for cracks, bulges or dampness.

    Air Conditioning

    Just as you readied your furnace for fall, now is the time to make sure that air conditioning units are in good working order for the warmer months ahead. Change the filter, check hose connections for leaks, and make sure the drain pans are draining freely.

    Attic

    Search for signs that insects and critters have colonized. Also, search aggressively for mold, which often takes the form of gray or black blotches. Proper insulation and good ventilation will deter mold growth in the attic, so take action now to prevent the problem from developing in the warmer months ahead.

    Basement

    Dampness in a basement suggests higher-than-normal relative humidity, inadequate ventilation and the need for a dehumidifier. Check the base of poured-concrete walls for cracks and evidence of water penetration. And use a flashlight to examine exposed framing. If you see what looks like tunneling on the wood, call a pest control company.

    Decks and Patios

    Look for warped, loose or splintered boards, and do a good sweep to remove any leaves and debris that might have accumulated between boards. If the finish on your wood deck is faded or worn, now is the time to clean, stain, and reseal it. If you have composite decking, follow manufacturer's recommendations on seasonal care.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of you exterior wall maintenance, roof maintenance, roof repair, window repair and window maintenance needs. Call us today at 215-453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

     

  • Wood Siding Vs. Vinyl Siding

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    Courtesy of certainteed.com

    There are often a lot of debates about whether to choose wood or vinyl siding is best for homes. While some like the aesthetics of wood siding, some argue the durability of vinyl siding.

    According to homeguide123, when it comes to cost, vinyl siding is less expensive than wood siding.

    According to the writers at Service Magic, www.servicemagic.com, cedar siding can cost as much as $8/square foot, which is nearly double the starting price of vinyl siding per square foot.

    But, since wood siding can improve the sellability of a home, many people are willing to make the investment.

    When it comes to appearance,  wood siding wins out.  It provides a more natural and inviting finish than vinyl siding.

    If you're basing your decision on maintenance, vinyl siding is probably the way to go because it doesn't have the issues of rotting, termites, or chipping that wood siding has.  If the vinyl is painted, it won't fade as quickly as wood siding, according to homeguide123.  However, if you properly and routinely maintain your wood siding, it will last for years to come.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your wood siding vs vinyl siding decisions.  Call us today at (215) 453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

     

     

     

  • Wood Siding Options

    wood-siding-options

    Courtesy of BobVila.com

    There are a variety of siding options, let alone a variety of wood siding options.  If you are leaning toward choosing wood siding for your home or commercial building,  here is an overview of the options you have, courtesy of BobVila.com

    Pine
    Pine has long been a standard for exterior siding. Pine and its related softwoods—spruce and fir—can be less expensive than other species. Knot-free pine can be difficult to get in longer lengths, though, which can make a project more labor-intensive and costly. Pine holds a finish well, and is preferable when painting or staining horizontal siding. It is typically used for clapboards, but some contractors are wary of fast-growth pine for siding because it can be prone to cupping, splitting, and checking. Pine is not a rot-resistant wood, so it is important to keep it sealed and well maintained.

    Spruce
    A member of the pine family, this softwood is readily available in East Coast markets as a substitute for pine. It comes in longer lengths than pine, and has many of the same characteristics. It is typically used for board siding, especially clapboards. Again, since it is not a naturally rot-resistant wood, it is important to regularly maintain and seal the wood.

    Fir
    Like pine and spruce, fir is used as an economical siding option. It comes in long lengths, is easy to cut and install, takes a finish well, and is readily available regionally in the West. Like the other softwoods, fir is easily milled to a pattern, be it shiplap, tongue-and-groove, or board-and-batten.

    Cedar
    Cedar siding is known for its grain and its rot resistance. It is straight and resists splitting. Cedar takes a stain well and reveals a rich character. It is commonly used in shakes and shingles because it is dimensionally stable, resists swelling, and has less cupping and splitting. Cedar clapboards are popular, too, but clear grade A cedar can be costly. Still, for its grain and texture, cedar is preferred for stain applications. Cedar siding is naturally more moisture and insect-resistant than pine, but must be treated and maintained to retain these qualities. All woods must be sealed and stained or painted to resist moisture, damage, and decay.

    Redwood
    Perhaps the hallmark of rich texture and tone, redwood is a good choice for siding in all climates. Redwood resists shrinking, so it holds its profile and keeps its joints with little warping or cupping. Redwood has little pitch or resin, so it absorbs and retains its finish very well and requires less maintenance than some other species. Redwood is also naturally insect resistant, not just on the face but throughout the wood. Grown in the West, redwood can be difficult to obtain in other regions.

    Price and Options
    Wood pricing varies depending on the market. It may be difficult to get some native western woods on the East Coast, for example, because consumers buy it up in the local markets. And because some woods cannot be harvested as quickly as others, the supply is naturally lower. Check with your builder or local lumberyard before making a final decision.

    Some companies offer pre-primed planks, shakes, and shingles. These boards come primed on one or both faces, and are sealed and protected from the minute they arrive on site. These boards and shingles may be dipped or factory coated. Before installing, make sure that edges and ends are properly sealed. Freshly cut ends must always be primed and sealed before nailing.

    A good wood siding should last for many, many years, but it must be properly maintained. Proper maintenance includes power washing, staining and sealing whenever the heat of the sun fades the finish, or moisture starts to turn to mold or mildew. Always allow wood to dry well before applying a new stain or finish.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your wood siding options, exterior siding, siding installation, siding repair and siding maintenance needs. Call us today at (215) 453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

  • Exterior Remodeling 'Value' on Upswing

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    If you have been working on home improvement projects recently, you will be glad to hear the ROI is coming back up when it comes to home remodeling.

    There have been tax benefits for homeowners, most notably energy tax credits, PMI deduction and mortgage debt forgiveness that Congress and the President extended through 2013.

    According to HouseLogic,"After several bruising years, spending on remodeling projects is up and so too is your return on your remodeling dollars. The national average percentage recoup on all 35 projects in Remodeling Magazine’s 2013 Cost vs. Value Report rose since last year."

    Obviously what you will be able to get depends on what types of projects you undertake, your market and when you decide to sell.

    Which projects offered the best ROI? Exterior remodeling projects.

    According to HouseLogic, "Exterior projects like siding, window, and garage door replacements took seven of the top 10 spots in this year’s list."

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your exterior remodeling, roof repair, window installation and deck construction needs.  Call us today at (215) 453-9180 for your FREE estimate.

     

  • How to Care For Pennsylvania Brick Siding

    bricks-0144

    Brick has been, and still is a popular building material.  The fact that it's energy efficient and it looks nice doesn't hurt either.

    It is important to know how to care for your pennsylvania brick siding because how you maintain it will greatly affect its longevity.  Here are some tips from Bob Vila on how to keep your brick looking nice:

    The least aggressive approach should be your first plan of action when it comes to cleaning brick. Just like soiled clothing, different types of dirt on your home's exterior will require a different cleaning agent. Once a year use a garden hose, with a spray nozzle, or a spray bottle to remove any loose dirt.

    If a particular side of your home receives little to no sunlight and the nearby vegetation is damp, be on the lookout for moss, mold, or mildew growth. A solution of one cup of bleach mixed with a gallon of water can be applied with a scrub brush can be used to clean most problem areas. Use a natural or synthetic bristle brush — wire brushes leave traces of steel behind that will rust and discolor the bricks. Before applying a bleach solution to brick, give the area a thorough soaking. This will help prevent the brick from absorbing the bleach.

    Avoiding Water Damage 
    Water damage is caused by one of two conditions: splash back or rising damp. In splash back, the continually of rain beating against the brick soaks into the mortar, causing the mortar joints or the bricks to crack. Rising damp results when ground water seeps up from below, leaving behind what is called a tide line. The moisture above the tide line will eventually evaporate, but the salt crystals that remain will, over time, cause the bricks and mortar to break down. Freezing and thawing cycles can accelerate damage to water-soaked brick, so repairing problems early will prevent more extensive repairs in the future. Look for water damage on an annual basis, and budget for some possible repointing every five to ten years.

    Repointing 
    Repointing is necessary in places where the mortar joints have become soft or the mortar itself is cracked or damaged. The damaged mortar is removed carefully so as not to disturb the surrounding brickwork. Fresh mortar is applied in layers. When repointing, the depth of the new mortar should be twice the width of the mortar joint. Mortar applied directly to the damaged surface will not hold up.

    Owners of historic or older homes will want to make sure that the fresh mortar matches the original. Acontractor will take a sample of the mortar, crush it, and dissolve it in acid. This process removes the binder and leaves behind the sand aggregate, making it easier to identify the proper shade.

    Paint Removal
    Painting a brick facade was first in vogue in the early 1800's. Removing that paint can be a painstaking process. Chemical treatments work best for paint removal, and are best left to professionals. Sandblasting should never be the remedy for paint removal, as it causes lasting damage to the beauty and integrity of brick. The remaining brick will be rough in texture, and since sandblasting removes the kiln-hardened outer fire-skin of the brick, it will become more susceptible to dirt build-up and moisture penetration. This is especially true of bricks made before the turn of the century.

    Aggressive treatments, like chemical applications used to remove chalk, calcium carbonate, and rust, are best left to a professional. Chemicals must be spot tested in various concentrations. Too high of a concentration can etch the surface of the brick, damage window glass, or cause discoloration.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your Pennsylvania Brick Siding, exterior siding, and siding repair needs.  Call us today at (215) 453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

  • Projects to Add the Most Value to Your Home

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    HouseLogic did a photo slideshow recently on the home projects that will add the most value to your home.  not surprisingly, most of these projects involve your home's exterior siding, windows and entryways.

    Here are some of the projects they mentioned and how they will add value to your home:

    Vinyl Siding

    Famous for its durability and reasonable price, lightweight vinyl siding also is easy to install, which cuts labor costs. Manufacturers keep coming up with new colors that won’t fade, so there are more choices than ever. Good-quality vinyl siding will last 30 years or more.

    National average cost: $11,192
    Value at resale: $8,154
    Percent of investment recouped: 72.9%

    Fiber-Cement Siding

    Fiber-cement siding is a popular choice for replacement siding. Although its initial price is higher than many other types of siding (it’s heavy and labor-intensive to install), the durability and stability of fiber-cement means less maintenance in the long run. It takes paint well, so you can have your choice of exterior paint colors. It’s also fireproof and rot-resistant.

    National average cost: $13,083
    Value at resale: $10,379
    Percent of investment recouped: 79.3%

    Steel Entry Door

    Replacing an older entry door with a new steel model is the most cost-effective project in the 2013 Cost vs. Value Report. A steel door costs less than half of a similar fiberglass door. The steel outer layer is susceptible to denting; a brass kickplate (shown) helps protect the door from accidental dings.

    National average cost: $1,137
    Value at resale: $974
    Percent of investment recouped: 85.6%

    Wood Deck

    A deck is a cost-effective way to increase your living space and is a great way to enjoy the outdoors when the weather is nice. A simple deck using pressure-treated lumber is a good DIY project and saves up to 50% of a professionally built deck. Clean and seal your deck annually to keep it in great shape.

    National average cost: $9,327 (professionally built)
    Value at resale: $7,213
    Percent of investment recouped: 77.3%

    Wood Replacement Windows

    Swapping out older, leaky windows for new wood replacement windows is a style upgrade that saves energy. The Efficient Windows Collaborative says you’ll save up to $450 per year if you switch out single-pane windows for new double-pane windows in a 2,150-sq.-ft. house. Not in the market for new? Inexpensive weather stripping will keep out the drafts.

    National average cost: $10,708 (10 replacements)
    Value at resale: $7,852
    Percent of investment recouped: 73.3%

    Want to add more value to your home? Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your exterior siding, window replacement, and deck repair needs.  Call us today at (215) 453-9180 for your FREE estimate.