Underdecking Must-Haves: Outdoor Living

Do you wish you had a relaxing space to hang out and enjoy your yard? Does water drip from your second story deck making it impossible to use the space below when it is raining? If you want functional space that stays dry and doubles as a finished outdoor entertaining area, adding an under deck gutter system may be just what you need.

Underdecking ― the process of attaching material to the underside of a deck ― can help create a covered space that can be used year-round.

The area under a raised first-floor deck is typically damp, with mold or mildew forming on the slab and beams underneath. Use a deck roof to keep the area dry and usable for storage. Additional benefits of implementing a deck roof include:

  • Bird proof
  • Self-cleaning
  • Handles snow loads
  • Guaranteed not to leak or sag

How it Works

An aluminum under deck ceiling system acts like a dropped-ceiling and channels rainwater and snow away from the space between the decking planks. The overlapping panels attach to a framework that angles water, snow, and debris into seamless gutters and downspouts. By moving moisture away from the house and foundation, your patio, furniture, and other contents stay dry. Depositing the water in specific areas prevents the ground around your home from becoming oversaturated.

Clearance requirements for underdecking are minimal. On the high end, the deck roof hangs about two inches below the beams with the slope dropping an eighth of an inch for every foot.

Aluminum vs. Vinyl

The temperature fluctuates significantly throughout the year in Minnesota and Wisconsin, from scorching hot summers to frigid winters. Snow and ice may thaw and freeze multiple times in a single season. Unlike vinyl, aluminum alloy does not contract and expand with the temperature. This means that the deck ceiling will not develop gaps or cracks over time. Here are three more reasons why aluminum is a better choice:

  • Aluminum is rigid and stronger than vinyl, so it will not sag or buckle over time. As the under deck system can feature light fixtures, fans, speakers and other outdoor accessories to make the space feel warm and inviting, it is important to ensure the material used is supportive.
  • Birds and squirrels often choose to build their nests in traditional gutters and under the deck against the beams. The deck ceiling uses overlapping panels that are enclosed with flashing, effectively critter-proofing the area.
  • Aluminum alloy requires very little maintenance, and you can power wash or stain your deck as you usually would. Dish soap or glass cleaner can be used with a soft cloth, sponge or shammy to clean the panels without scratching the surface.

Finish Your Yard in Style

Once your under deck system is in place, give your home a finishing touch that reflects your personality with concrete patios and hardscaping. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.

  • Maximize your space by using natural stone and extending it beyond the covered patio area.
  • Create walkways to your outdoor space with stamped or broomed concrete services.
  • Extend your outdoor season with a fire pit or similar feature. It makes a gathering cozy, whether you are having a party or a quiet evening for two.
  • Add functionality to your yard with an outdoor living space.

Completing your yard with design details can enhance curb appeal and increase property value by up to 25 percent. At All Exteriors, we work with you to create your perfect outdoor space, from concrete patios to retaining walls and driveways. For more information on creating the yard of your dreams, contact us today!

Everything You Need to Know About Everlast Siding

With warmer weather again, you are probably thinking about whether you will have to paint your home this year. But what if you didn’t have to paint it ever again? Here are some of the biggest benefits of Everlast siding.

Solidly Made

Everlast siding isn’t like wood siding, fiber cement siding, or even vinyl siding. This high-quality composite siding is made from a carefully balanced combination of polymeric resin and granular stone. The result is a solid construction that won’t bow or buckle as wood and fiber siding choices do or chip and crack like vinyl does as it ages.

Strong and Durable

In addition to its solid construction, Everlast siding is so strong and durable that it’s guaranteed to last you for years. Not only is this siding strong due to its unique composition, but it’s also finished with an acrylic polymer that is guaranteed to protect the color from fading for years to come.

No Water Absorption

Water is the nemesis of most siding. Wood and fiber cement siding absorb and hold water, causing rot to damage your home. Keeping a protective coating of paint on the siding can help stave off the inevitable, but then the home must be repainted any time the old paint starts to crack or chip. Even vinyl siding can leak, letting moisture in to weaken the wooden structure of your home. Everlast siding changes the game with its resin and stone composition that won’t absorb water, and an interlocking design that effectively keeps water out.

Easy to Care For

If you’re tired of painting and repainting your home, the last thing you’ll want is another type of siding that’s hard to care for. Everlast’s resin and stone composition and acrylic polymer outer coating will make this siding the least maintenance-intensive part of your home. Dirt can easily be cleaned off with a pressure washer, but otherwise, this durable, maintenance-free siding should need absolutely nothing from you.

Beautiful

Okay, so this siding is strong, durable, and easy to care for, but does it look good, too? Luckily, if you’re looking to increase your home’s curb appeal, Everlast siding can do that, too. Choose from over a dozen different colors and two different trim packages, all of which will maintain its vibrant color for years to come, thanks to the UV-resistant finish.

Imagine the Great Outdoors, Maintenance Free

You have plenty of other things to spend your time and effort on. Why spend it on something like taking care of your siding, when you could be doing something you want to do instead? For more information about where to buy Everlast siding or to schedule home siding installation, contact All Exteriors LLC today.

Featured image: Artazum/Shutterstock

4 Benefits of Installing Siding on Your Home in the Winter

The winter season may seem like the last time of year that you would want to work on your home, but there are several advantages to scheduling a home siding installation this time of year. Here are a few benefits of installing siding on your midwest home in the winter:

Easier to schedule with the installers

The first benefit of having your siding done in the winter is how much easier it is to schedule. Summer is a siding company’s busiest season, but since most people don’t schedule in the winter, you’ll have shorter waiting periods and your pick of dates. – No landscaping to work around. Another advantage to having your home siding replaced in the winter is that there isn’t any landscaping for the installers to work around. They won’t have to trim anything back, making their job faster and easier, and then you can enjoy your landscaping untouched when the warmer months roll around again.

Less pesky wildlife to work around

If your siding has been in need of replacement for a while, you might have holes and crevices that have opened up in the siding or in the soffit and fascia, which small animals such as squirrels and mice have taken advantage of. Replacing the siding during the winter, while the animals aren’t about, will give you the opportunity to get rid of their nests without having to call in an exterminator.

Reap the benefits of new siding right away

New siding, when installed correctly, can help to insulate your home from extreme winter weather and prevent heat loss. The result is more economical heating of your home and an immediate reduction in your utility bill. You might experience a couple of cold days in the house while the work is done, but once it’s complete, you’ll get to enjoy the benefits right away.

Improve curb appeal before the warmer months

Start the spring and summer out on the right foot by improving your home’s curb appeal now. Whether you install vinyl siding, EDCO Steel Siding, or LP Smartside Siding, the result is a much cleaner, more attractive look. Don’t forget to update your gutters while you’re at it! Doing this now is especially helpful if you’re planning on selling your home in the spring and want it looking its best.

Replacing your siding and gutters is advantageous no matter what time of year you do the work, but scheduling in the winter months gives you more flexibility and an immediate return that you won’t have if you wait until the weather warms up. Contact All Exteriors LLC today to schedule an installation of your new home siding, and cross that job off your to-do list sooner rather than later.

Featured image: Bonita R. Cheshier/Shutterstock