Siding-Exterior Trim — Typical Warranty & Maintenance

siding-exterior trimThe following information is provided only as a guide. Not all homebuilder warranties are the same. You should ask to see your builder's warranty before you sign a purchase contract. 

Some homebuilders will allow buyers to modify warranty elements during contract negotiations. 

The information below will serve as a guide to what you might expect from your builder.

All new homes need considered operation and maintenance. Tips and suggestions are provided below.

Typical Performance Standard:

Siding not installed straight – Any piece of lap type siding more than 1/2 inch off parallel within a 16 foot length with contiguous courses is unacceptable.

Warranty period: 1 year

Siding buckled – Siding that projects more than 3/16 inch from the face of

adjacent siding is unacceptable. THIS IS NOT THERMAL DISTORTION.

Warranty period: 1 year

Siding has delaminated – The builder will replace delaminated siding that is covered under manufacturer's warranty, unless the delamination was caused by the owner's actions or negligence. The repaired area may not match the original siding.

Warranty period: 1 year

Expansion/Contraction – The accepted tolerance level for expansion/contraction is 1/2 inch in a 12 ft. distance. High gloss siding may reflect ripples. The builder is responsible for siding application only. Builder will repair or replace siding that has exceeded the tolerance level only during the warranty period. NOTE: Repaired areas may not match in color and/or texture.

Warranty period: 1 year

Siding Wavy, Bowed – OBSERVATION: Siding is bowed or wavy, only if noted on Final Inspection Before Possession form. Some waviness in lap siding is to be expected because of bows in studs. THIS IS NOT THERMAL DISTORTION.

Warranty Period: None

Siding color is faded – Gradual fading or change in color caused by sunlight occurs in nearly all siding-exterior trim materials and cannot be prevented by the builder. See manufacturer's warranty.

Warranty period: None

Caulking Leaks – Builder will re-caulk, one time only, any area that requires correction to prevent leakage.

Warranty period: 1 year

Trim Loose – Trim shall not separate more than 1/4 inch from the house.

Warranty period: 1 year

Gaps show in trim –Joints between exterior trim elements, including siding and masonry, shall not result in joints opened wider than 1/4 inch.

Warranty period: 1 year

Trim boards shrink, swell, crack or split – Tolerance level of a 1/4 inch gap on exterior wood products is acceptable.

Warranty period: 1 year

Trim boards are bowed or twisted – Bows and twists exceeding 3/8 inch in 8 feet are unacceptable.

Warranty period: 1 year

Trim boards are cupped – Cups exceeding 3/16 inch in 5% inches are unacceptable.

Warranty period: 1 year

Notes

All siding-exterior trim expands and contracts in response to changes in humidity and temperature. Slight waves are visible in siding under moist weather conditions; shrinkage and separations will be more noticeable under dry conditions. These behaviors cannot be entirely eliminated.

Color Fade – Gradual fading or change in color, which is caused by sunlight, occurs in nearly all siding-exterior trim materials and cannot be prevented.

Raised Grain on Siding or Trim – Because of the effects of weather on natural wood, you should expect raised grain to develop, especially on exterior cedar trim. This is normal and not a defect in the wood or paint.

Homeowner Operation and Maintenance

Caulking – All siding and trim elements should be checked in the spring and in the fall for signs of missing, worn or failing caulk. Re-caulk as needed. Caulking supplies are available at hardware stores and home centers.

Cedar Acid Bleed Through – Cedar wood is prone to showing signs of acid stains, called cedar acid bleed through. These oils and resins from the wood that come through the stain are normal. Your paint store can provide products and information to manage cedar bleed through prior to repainting.

Fiber-Cement Products – Fiber-cement based siding will require repainting and caulking just as wood products do.

Vinyl Siding – Siding will expand and contract during climate changes. The accepted tolerance level for expansion/contraction is ½” in a 12’ distance.

Vinyl siding will occasionally require cleaning. Start at the top to avoid streaking and use a cleaning product recommended by your siding manufacturer. Follow directions carefully.

Thermal Distortion – Vinyl siding can melt or distort at temperatures of 160 to 165 degrees. Light reflecting off glass or other objects (35 feet away or more) can magnify as it reaches the siding and raising the temperature of vinyl up to the melting point; even in winter. This is a condition for which the builder, siding and window manufactures are not responsible. Custom screens or awnings can be added to affecting windows. Sometimes strategically located landscape plantings can prevent reoccurrence.

Wood and Wood Products – Wood siding-exterior trim will require routine refinishing. The timing will vary with climatic conditions. Maintain caulking to minimize moisture entry into the siding and trim areas. Note that some paint colors will require more maintenance than others and some sides of the home may show signs of wear sooner based on their exposure to the elements. Some wood siding-exterior trim, such as cedar, is subject to more cracking and will require more maintenance attention.

Typical Builder Limited Warranty Guidelines

Builder will correct defects in siding-exterior trim materials or workmanship noted on the final walk through. Subsequent damage to the siding will be your responsibility.

BUILDER HAS NO CONTROL OVER POSSIBLE CAUSES OF THERMAL DISTORTION AND IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ITS REPAIR.

Any siding-exterior trim issues not meeting the performance standard will be corrected within the warranty period.

Builder will caulk any cracks that exceed 1/4 inch and causes leaks. Repair will be one time only within the warranty period. Paint or stain touch-up will be your responsibility.

Builder will correct any separation at joints, or where siding meets another material if; the separation allows water to enter the home one time only within the warranty period.

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