Landscaper Damaged Vinyl Siding: How to Repair

  • Cape Cod Home
  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Tom in Montana is on the line with a question about damaged vinyl siding. Tell us what happened to your money pit.

    TOM IN MONTANA: Well, I had a little issue with doing some work around the house, landscaping. And they’ve got one of those little, like a Toro Dingo walk-behind loader deal. And they ran into the side of the house leaving damaged vinyl siding.

    TOM: Oh, boy.

    TOM IN MONTANA: So, my question is – we think that our siding is obsolete. We bought the house about five years ago. It’s a steel siding and we don’t think we can get the same pattern graining and maybe even coloring as what it has. So, what would their responsibility be on something like that?

    TOM: Are you sure it’s not aluminum siding? It’s steel siding?

    TOM IN MONTANA: It is steel siding, 100 percent.

    TOM: Wow. Yeah, I know steel siding was used a lot after the war.

    How old is your house?

    TOM IN MONTANA: It was built in the late 40s, maybe early 50s.

    TOM: Yeah. Yep, that was the era.

    TOM IN MONTANA: But this siding, we figure, is – well, the siding is newer than that, though. It’s probably 15, maybe 20 years old. Because it’s got some foam insulation behind it, in two different styles, and then, of course, your wood behind it. Of course, it hit hard enough that it did a little damage to the wood, so they’ve got to get back to that.

    TOM: Your landscaper actually is the one that hit this?

    TOM IN MONTANA: Yeah.

    TOM: Well, a couple things come to mind for a landscaping accident. First of all, what you might want to do is contact your homeowners insurance company, because this may be covered by your insurance. And then you can get out of it and have them deal with the landscaper. Because unfortunately, if this product is not replaceable, then you’re going to have to replace your siding.

    TOM IN MONTANA: OK.

    TOM: Now, how far you take this is going to be the discussion, whether or not you have to do the whole house or not.

    TOM IN MONTANA: Right.

    TOM: But I would turn to the homeowners insurance company first as – and let them know about the damaged vinyl siding. And then let them chase the landscaper because I think you’re going to get probably a quicker, more efficient repair, which is what you want to get done first. Your first priority is getting this repaired, if you deal with your insurance company, than if you try to deal with these poor landscapers who made the mistake.

    TOM IN MONTANA: Right.

    TOM: And frankly, what the landscaper should be doing is turning it over to their insurance company. So you may be able to get out of just dealing with the landscaper directly and have the insurance companies talk to each other about the damaged vinyl siding.

    TOM IN MONTANA: Right.

    TOM: If the guy is insured, this is the kind of thing that if you’re in business you get insured against.

    TOM IN MONTANA: But I didn’t know how far we could push it to take them on this with it – and it might be more of a legal question than in a home improvement, per se. But just kind of getting an idea on what direction I should go. Because I know it’s up to them to get it replaced because, of course, they’re 100-percent at fault in doing it.

    TOM: Right. Mm-hmm. Yep.

    TOM IN MONTANA: But I know if it was insurance that, say, you had hail damage and they can’t get the siding to match, they end up replacing the whole house.

    TOM: Exactly. And that’s what might very well happen here. I mean if it ends up that there’s no insurance anywhere and you’ve got to deal with this yourself, the only other suggestion I would have is – would be to explore any part of the house where you could take off some of that steel siding and repurpose it to the side that’s damaged that, perhaps, is more visible. And you may be able to take off a bottom row or two and use a different siding there that – make it look almost like it was part of the design. So, there may be a way to kind of cheat your way through it that way.

    But again, I would call your homeowners insurance company and start right there. I think that’s going to be your best first step to get the damaged vinyl siding repair going, OK?

    TOM IN MONTANA: OK. Alright.

Leave a Reply