Should You Paint Or Replace Siding? [By Type Of Siding]

You probably wonder whether you should paint or replace your home's siding. Look no further. We have researched all about both painting and replacing siding for you.

Whether you should paint or replace siding depends on your reason for wanting new siding. It is much more expensive to replace siding than to paint it. If you are considering painting damaged siding, it is better to replace it instead.

Continue reading to learn which is more expensive, to paint the siding or put new siding on your house. We will also discuss whether or not you have to remove old siding before putting new siding up and lots more.

Modern contemporary house with gorgeous, gray sidings, decorative stone cladding and plants in front of the porch, Should You Paint Or Replace Siding? [By Type Of Siding]

Painting Siding versus Replacing Siding

The decision to paint or replace your siding usually comes alongside existing siding deteriorating or other damage. Most of the common issues people have with siding deteriorating over time presents in holes or cracks. Mildew is another issue that you may face when it comes to siding.

If you are going to paint siding, you should do so with newer siding. When old siding needs replacing, it is usually because it is damaged. As long as the siding you are working with is not damaged, you can paint it.

Front porch of a modern house with dark wooden sidings, yellow front door and decorative stone claddingas

An appropriate time to paint the siding on your home rather than replace it is if you are going for a new look. This makes more sense than if you are fixing a problem. Another reason people paint their siding is that wood and vinyl siding lose color or become dingy after a while.

Types of Siding

It is important to know the different types of siding because some are more long-lasting than others. Another factor to consider is that the price of siding varies as well. The decision regarding painting versus replacing siding is impacted by the type of siding you are working with.

  • Vinyl
  • Wood-natural or engineered
  • Brick and Brick Veneer
  • Composite
  • Fiber Cement
  • Metal-aluminum or steel
  • Stone Veneer and Natural Stone
  • Hardie Board
  • Stucco

When you decide what type of siding you would like to put up, consider a few factors. The maintenance, durability, price, and style are the main factors that contribute to what type is best for you.

Vinyl siding is affordable, reasonably easy to maintain, and durable. It can be painted if you are going for a new look.

The most commonly used wood for siding is white pine. It is on the more expensive side, though. Wood does not withstand the elements for a long time and needs to be well maintained.

There is only one difference between natural wood and engineered wood siding. Engineered wood is manufactured. Engineered wood is made from natural wood in its core and either hardwood veneer or plywood on the top or outer surface.

Why does the style of siding matter?

Classic American country home with gray wooden sidings, white trims and a gorgeous white fence on the porch

Style of siding is different than type. For example, lap siding is typically horizontal rather than vertical; the planks overlap. Style is something to consider when choosing what type of siding you want and whether you should paint or replace it depends on its condition regardless of style.

What is the most durable type of siding?

The most durable type of siding is Hardie board. Hardie board is fiber cement-based siding that is warp and impact-resistant, inflammable, and created to withstand extreme temperatures. Acrylic-latex paint is best for Hardie board.

The type of siding in the running for more durable against Hardie board is vinyl. Vinyl siding is the most most popular choice. It is easy to maintain and costs less than most alternatives, including Hardie board.

If you are curious about what nails to use for vinyl siding, here is a link below:

What Nails Should I Use For Vinyl Siding?

Can all types of siding be painted?

Vinyl and Wood

Vinyl and wood can be painted as long as they are not damaged. The problem to look out for is buying the wrong paint. Be sure the paint you choose for your siding is approved for exterior use.

It is also essential to make sure painting your siding will not void the warranty.

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Metal siding, usually made of either aluminum or steel, is also okay for painting. Pre-finished metal siding has already been painted. Regardless, siding lasts longer than paint.


You can paint composite siding; be sure to use an exterior acrylic latex enamel.

Brick and Brick Veneer

Brick siding can be painted, but it is a permanent decision. You can not get the original look of the bricks back after painting them. You can paint brick veneer as well.


Hardie board is meant to be painted. It is fiber cement. When paint has been applied to Hardie board correctly, it provides a better wood feel. This type of siding is pest and rot-resistant, and it will not warp, rot, or burn.

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Stucco siding can be painted as long as it is not damaged. You should clean stucco before painting it and caulk the cracks also. As with any other siding you paint, be sure to use exterior paint.

Not all types of siding should be painted. Just because you can paint it does not necessarily mean you should.


Natural stone and synthetic stone are not necessarily meant to be painted. Use masonry paint if you choose to paint yours. Stone is usually used as an accent, but you can also find stone veneer siding if that is what you are looking for.

Fiber Cement

Fiber cement siding should be painted if it is an unfinished style. On the other hand, you do not need to paint it when it is pre-finished. Acrylic latex paint is best for masonry.

Is it cheaper to paint or put siding on a house?

A three story house with brown wooden sidings, white trims and gorgeous brown roofing

It is much less expensive to paint a house or the siding on a home than to put siding up. Siding varies in price quite a bit. Vinyl is the least costly option, and engineered wood is similar in price.

The thing about the expense of siding a house is that it costs a lot more upfront. On the brighter side, it lasts quite a bit longer than paint. Siding can usually withstand environmental elements better than paint.

An alternative to painting or replacing vinyl siding is a repair kit. This will cover holes or cracks in the vinyl so that you do not have to replace the entire length of siding for minimum damage.

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Can you put vinyl siding over rotted wood?

Technically, you can put vinyl siding up over rotted wood, but you shouldn't. Putting up vinyl siding over top of rotten wood will surely cover the rotten wood, but it will not last very long.

Instead of putting vinyl siding over top of rotted wood, you need to replace it with new wood, or you can paint over top of rotted wood, though. If you can not afford new siding, you can treat the rotted wood with a wood hardener.

You have to seal the wood before painting it. You should only paint over rotted wood if the rot is not excessive. Wood will continue to rot even after being painted; therefore, painting it is only a temporary fix.

Can you put new siding over old siding?

A contractor checking the sidings for bumps or incorrections

In most cases, you can not put new siding over old siding. The exception is vinyl siding on top of wood siding. Even when you put new vinyl siding over top of wood, it still takes a lot of preparation.

If you are replacing old siding made of vinyl or metal, it will have to be removed before new siding is put up. You should not put new siding over old siding unless you are sure it will work and how to do it correctly.

What is the average life expectancy of vinyl siding?

On average, vinyl siding usually lasts between thirty and forty years. How long it lasts depends on where you live and how well you take care of it. If the climate is extreme where you live, your siding will not last as long.

To get the most out of your vinyl siding, you should wash it by hand every year. Doing so will make it last significantly longer. You can use a pressure washer if that is a more practical option.

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Modern contemporary house with gorgeous, gray sidings, decorative stone cladding and plants in front of the porch

It is often better to paint siding rather than replace it because it is much less expensive to paint your home than to put up new siding. You should only paint siding if it is not damaged or minimally damaged at best. When painting siding, always use exterior paint on it. If the siding on your home has deteriorated by rotting or more than minimal cracking, you should replace it.

Before you go, check out the following links related to siding:

Should You Replace Windows Or Siding First?

4 Best Paints To Use On Aluminum Siding

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