Whether you’re installing new cedar siding or buying a house with existing cedar siding, you may be asking yourself, “should I paint or stain my cedar siding?” EMA does not recommend painting cedar siding in most circumstances. To help you understand why, we’ll explore each option.
Painting Cedar Siding
A fresh coat of paint can work wonders for your home. You can drastically change the appearance of your house with a few layers of paint, which can bring your house back to life or get it ready to sell. Many people choose to paint cedar siding when they inherit siding that has already been painted, because it is difficult to restore a non-painted look. If you decide to paint or repaint your cedar siding, we recommend that it be handled by professionals to ensure that best practices are followed.
The primary argument against painting cedar siding is the amount of upkeep necessary. Paint will typically only last three to five years on cedar regardless of the quality of the paint, and it can begin to peel in as little as twelve months. Needless to say, peeling paint does not enhance the look of your house, so if you decide to paint your cedar siding, you’ll be committing to new paint every three to five years. Aside from the practical reasons, cedar siding is usually selected for its natural beauty which is lost when painted.
Staining Cedar Siding
Staining cedar siding is a good option for people who really like the natural look of cedar but want it to match some other aspect of their property, or people who want to keep the natural look while tweaking the hue. Stain allows you to display the natural beauty of wood grain. Staining also gives you a little more control over the color of your house without compromising the natural wood look.
The downside to stain is essentially the same as paint. Stains will begin to peel as the wood adjusts over time. Some report that stain lasts a bit longer than paint, while others say that the peeling isn’t as noticeable. Either way, staining cedar siding is signing up for maintenance more frequently than some homeowners are willing to tolerate.
Leave it Alone
As you may have guessed by now, the simplest way to maintain cedar siding is to leave it alone. Part of the appeal of cedar is its natural appearance, and while it will need to be cleaned occasionally, leaving it alone is the lowest maintenance option and many see it as the most attractive option.
To answer the titular question, it is entirely up to you! Cedar siding is flexible enough to take paint, stain, or be left natural so the question comes back to you in terms of how much time and money you want to put into maintenance. Cedar is a great investment in the beauty of your home and can be left natural, stained, or painted to suit your preference. No matter what you choose, EMA is available to help you make the right choice for your home and specializes in cedar siding for the Greater Cincinnati Area.