How to Prevent and Deal With Rust Damage on Your Siding

Rust isn’t just unattractive; it can eat away at metal siding and compromise the integrity of your home or building. Periodic cleaning is essential to preventing rust damage as well as dealing with it once it occurs. For light rust stains, bleach is an excellent solution. You can also scrub it and then sand it smooth with sandpaper.

What Causes It?

Siding protects a building from wind, rain and pests, but it doesn’t always stand up to all the threats that nature and time can wreak. Even siding that isn’t made from metal can be susceptible to rust. This occurs when oxygen and moisture come into contact with a metal surface and a chemical reaction known as oxidation begins.

This occurrence, also called corrosion, eats away at the metal and can lead to its demise. While not always visible, rust will eventually cause problems with your building that can impact your life in ways you may not realize until it is too late. This includes high energy bills from a weakened insulation and animals creeping in to the deteriorated structure, not to mention health risks like tetanus.

If your siding is adorned with rust stains, there are a few options for removing them. Homeowners can use a mixture of baking soda and white vinegar to scrub away mild rust staining from vinyl siding. More serious stains can be attacked with acid-based solutions such as oxalic acid crystals mixed with warm water. Apply the solution to the stained area and scrub vigorously, rinsing the scrubbed area with a garden hose afterward.

It is important to note that oxalic acid and other acids may damage or discolor some siding materials, so it’s best to test a small area of the siding first. Bleach can also be used, but it must be applied with care to avoid damaging the vinyl. This method is most effective on stains that have become set in and is ideal for homeowners who aren’t interested in hiring professional power washers.

Other more permanent stains can be removed with the use of steel wool, sandpaper and some heat. This is a more extreme option, but is a great alternative for those who don’t want to invest in costly professional services. Lastly, Springbrook Power Washing has recently developed a revolutionary new product that can FULLY AND SAFELY remove rust staining from many different types of surfaces including vinyl, aluminum and concrete. This product is available to homeowners and commercial property managers now.

How to Prevent It

Despite its longevity and durability, vinyl siding can be susceptible to rust. In its early stages, rust isn’t much more than an unsightly cosmetic flaw, but left untreated rust can eat away at surfaces and compromise their integrity, weakening them over time. The good news is that there are steps you can take to prevent or at least mitigate the damage caused by rust.

The first step is to identify the cause of the rust stain. In most cases, rust will form on metal components above the vinyl siding such as gutters, downspouts, or the roof material. You will likely need to replace these metal components before the rust can spread below the surface and leave behind unsightly stains on your vinyl siding.

You can also use a metal cleaning solution to clean rust stains from the exterior of your house. This product is very easy to use and requires no additional equipment other than a bucket for mixing the cleaning solution and a water hose to rinse off the cleaning solution and loosened rust stains. Always use protective gloves and a pair of safety goggles or glasses when working with chemicals.

Another way to remove rust stains is to use citric acid. This is a very effective method for many rust stains, especially those caused by iron run-off from sprinklers. To use this method, mix one tablespoon of vinegar with a cup of citric acid to create a solution that is the consistency of paint. Apply the solution to the rusty areas of your vinyl siding and scrub vigorously, then rinse off with a hose.

It is also a good idea to keep plants and other vegetation away from your vinyl siding. This will not only prevent moisture buildup, but it will also reduce the risk of rust-causing dirt and fertilizers seeping up through the soil and onto the vinyl siding. Finally, make sure that any hardware on the exterior of your home or building is made from a rust-resistant material such as stainless steel or galvanized iron.

What to Do When It Happens

Despite your best efforts to clean and repair your siding regularly, sometimes damage can happen. Colors fade, paint peeled off and rust or chalking can appear on the surface. When this happens, it’s important to act quickly, especially if you don’t want the situation worsening. Otherwise, you may face high heating bills due to degrading insulation and critters creeping into your home.

In some cases, a professional from Siding Cambridge is required to assess the damage and recommend the most effective remedy. If a lot of the metal is damaged, replacing it will probably be necessary. But if the damaged area is limited to a few blemishes or scratches, these can be repaired with ease.

If your vinyl siding is showing signs of rust, it’s important to take action. Rust can eventually eat through the material and cause serious problems for your home or commercial building. It’s also unsightly, reducing curb appeal and detracting from the value of your property.

Scrubbing rust stains with an acid-based solution is the most reliable way to reverse the effects of oxidation. Contractors often use solutions like rust remover, but other options include using warm water mixed with oxalic acid crystals or a combination of hydrogen peroxide and hydrochloric acid.

After scrubbing, you’ll want to rinse the siding thoroughly with a garden hose. A power washer is also an excellent tool for blasting away rust stains and dirt, along with any other impurities on your siding.

If you’re determined to avoid the dangers of rust, it’s wise to invest in specialty coatings that protect metal from sunlight and salty air. These durable coatings will not only protect your siding from rust, but will also extend its lifespan. If you aren’t sure what type of siding is best for your home or commercial building, contact an expert today to discuss your options. They will help you choose the best materials to suit your environment and keep your property safe and looking great for years to come.

What to Do When You See It

If you find rust stains on your siding, you need to take care of it right away. It’s not just unsightly, but it can also lead to water damage and other issues. The good news is that rust stains are usually easy to treat, especially if you catch them early.

You can use a baking soda paste to remove mild rust stains on vinyl siding. This is a safe and inexpensive method, but it may not be effective on older stains or those that are deep in the siding. Another option is to use a pressure washer on a low setting to blast the rust stains off of your vinyl siding. Always make sure you use a safety shield and a face mask to protect yourself from the high-pressure water.

For more stubborn rust stains, you can try scrubbing with oxalic acid crystals. This is an effective cleaning agent, but it can be harmful to the environment and your skin. It’s best to use it outside, and wear gloves and goggles when handling it. Another home remedy that may work is citric acid, which can be mixed with vinegar to make a solution that will scrub away the oxidation stains.

Rust stains on your siding can indicate that the previous contractor used the wrong type of nails. They should have used stainless steel nails that can stand up to any weather conditions. If you have rust streaks or rusted nails, call your siding contractors right away to get them replaced.

Other signs of a poor siding installation job include large scratches, dents and discolorations. These are likely caused by debris blown against your siding during severe wind storms. You should check your siding for blemishes after any storm and during yearly maintenance to make sure they’re in good condition.

If your siding is damaged so badly that bare steel is exposed, Siding Cambridge can suggest the best way to repair it. In some cases, replacing the siding panels will be the only option. In other cases, the bare metal can be primed and painted over to prevent future rust.

Rust isn’t just unattractive; it can eat away at metal siding and compromise the integrity of your home or building. Periodic cleaning is essential to preventing rust damage as well as dealing with it once it occurs. For light rust stains, bleach is an excellent solution. You can also scrub it and then sand it…