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Rotted Wood: Is it Beneath Your Siding?

When it comes to home maintenance, one of the most insidious and often overlooked issues is rotted wood under siding. While siding serves as a protective shield for your home’s exterior, it’s not invincible. Over time, moisture, poor ventilation, and other factors can lead to the decay of the wood lurking beneath. In this post, we’ll delve into the causes, signs, and solutions for rotted wood under siding, helping you prevent and address this common problem before it becomes a major headache.

Understanding the Culprit: What Causes Rotted Wood Under Siding?

Rotted Wood Under Siding

Moisture Accumulation

One of the primary factors behind rotted wood is excessive moisture. Rainwater, snow, and even humidity can seep into the smallest cracks and gaps in your siding, creating a perfect environment for wood rot to thrive.

Lack of Ventilation

Proper ventilation is crucial for allowing moisture to escape from the spaces between the siding and the underlying wood. Inadequate ventilation traps moisture, encouraging the growth of fungi and decay-causing organisms.

Insect Infestisations

Certain insects, such as termites and carpenter ants, are attracted to damp and decaying wood. They burrow into the wood and exacerbate the rotting process.

Improper Installation

If siding is improperly installed, gaps can form that allow water to penetrate, leading to the gradual degradation of the wood beneath.

Spotting the Telltale Signs: How to Detect Rotted Wood Under Siding

How to Detect Rotted Wood Under Siding

Soft Spots

If you notice areas of your siding that feel soft or spongy when pressed, it’s a sign that the wood beneath might be rotting.


Stains, discoloration, or a greenish tint on your siding can indicate the presence of mold, which is often a result of moisture accumulation and can lead to wood rot.

Peeling or Cracked Paint

Paint that’s peeling or cracking could be a sign of moisture trapped beneath the siding, causing the wood to deteriorate.

Visible Decay

In severe cases, you might be able to see visible signs of decay, such as crumbling or missing sections of wood.

Addressing the Issue: Solutions for Rotted Wood Under Siding

Regular Inspections

Perform regular visual inspections of your siding, especially after heavy rain or extreme weather conditions. Look for signs of damage, soft spots, or discoloration.

Maintain Proper Drainage

Ensure that your gutters and downspouts are functioning properly to direct water away from your home’s exterior.

Improve Ventilation

Consider installing or enhancing ventilation systems, such as soffit vents and ridge vents, to allow moisture to escape.

Replace Rotten Wood

If you identify rotted wood, it’s crucial to replace the affected sections promptly. Consult with a professional if you’re unsure about the extent of the damage or the repair process.

Visible Decay

When replacing or installing siding, make sure to choose a reputable contractor who follows proper installation techniques to minimize the risk of future moisture infiltration.

While rotted wood under siding might be an easily overlooked issue, its consequences can be significant and expensive to address if left untreated. By understanding the causes, recognizing the signs, and taking proactive steps to prevent and address the problem, you can maintain the integrity and value of your home’s exterior. Regular maintenance and vigilance will go a long way in preserving the beauty and structural soundness of your property.

Read Our Rave Reviews

American Way Exteriors has earned numerous positive reviews for our outstanding service. Read about our customers’ pleasant experiences working with us, then contact us today to learn how we can improve your home with new siding and roofing.

"Jake Preston is amazing! We had wind damage to our roof. Jake assisted us through every step. Making sure we had no unanswered questions. His professionalism and kindness is unmatched. The crew was respectful and detailed oriented. Thank you Jake and American Way!"

Michelle G.

"Replaced the existing siding on my home. Contact and price were discussed thoroughly during the initial discussions. Workers arrived at the scheduled time and were professional in the removal, new installation, cleanup, and onsite conduct. Communication between supervisors, installers and myself was on a daily basis and any issues were addressed immediately. Would not hesitate to use this company again or recommend them."

Beecher R.

"We chose American Way Exteriors to replace our old vinyl siding with Hardie board siding and trim. Throughout the entire process we found the team to be very professional and receptive to our questions about the project. They were constantly in touch with us about when work would start, what to expect each day of the project, and followed up to see if we had concerns. As the project began it was very apparent our house had suffered from poor installation by the builder years ago. The American Way team worked to fix the problems, keeping us well informed along the way. We could not be happier with the finished project both cosmetically and structurally. This is definitely a company we highly recommend exterior projects!"

Kathy G.

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