Brick houses are among the most common in the world, so a lot of us are always looking out for solutions to weathering. One of the best ways to protect against weathering is with some kind of siding, but can a brick house be covered with siding?
A brick house can be covered with siding, but some sheathing will need to be placed on the walls first: something waterproof and slick to which the siding can more easily bind. Siding directly on a brick house will not work. If siding is applied on an uneven surface, it can end up bowed or rippled.
So, you can cover a brick house with siding, but it isn’t necessarily the easiest job in the world. Read on to find out more.
Is it hard to cover a brick house with siding?
While you certainly can put siding over a brick house, we should say right away that it isn’t going to be simple or easy. The first point is that siding absolutely requires a smooth and even surface. The siding needs to be completely flush with the wall along its whole edge. Otherwise, it will end up warping and bending as air and moisture get trapped beneath it.
Brick is not very smooth or even, so the siding can’t just go straight on as it could with other materials. You’ll need something underneath it to bind it properly to the wall. A contractor would in most cases apply a layer of plywood or OSB sheathing, bound to the wall with caulk. Then, once the sheathing is applied, the siding can be fitted relatively easily.
If you’re considering a DIY job, what makes covering a brick house with siding more difficult is the extra steps where something can go wrong. Often, DIY sheathing is not caulked properly, so the siding will still end up warped and bent.
If you are set on installing siding on your brick house, our advice is to let a professional do it. But you might need to do some hunting for the right person for the job since there’s a bricklayer shortage in Ireland! Covering brick with siding still won’t be easy, but a DIY job is almost impossible to get perfectly right.
How much does it cost to put siding over brick?
The total cost to put siding over brick depends on the size of your home, and how much exposed brick needs siding. Any repairs that need to be done to prepare the brick for the siding will also have an impact. In any case, it will depend on what siding material you go for, so let’s start at the bottom.
Vinyl is considered the most affordable and widely available siding material and can cost anywhere from £3-£5 per square foot. This changes depending on the quality of the vinyl. Labour costs will also need to be factored in, and this is only an average.
Fibre cement siding, a middle of the range option, will cost around £4-£8 per square foot.
Other types of siding, like wood and metal, will vary a lot depending on their type and quality. They can be the most expensive option or as low as the cheapest option. The most expensive wooden siding can cost as much as £20 per square inch or under £1 per square inch.
Metal has a similar range, with upwards of £25 per square inch for the most expensive materials. Commonly used metal sidings, like steel and aluminium, are usually somewhere from £1-£4 per square inch.
Take your time choosing your best option—even for a brick home, there are good options for siding.
What siding goes well with brick?
Though it is a harder process, that doesn’t mean some sidings don’t look and work really well with brick houses! That said, different people might be looking for different things from their siding. You might be more bothered about form than function, or the other way around.
In the case of durable, reliable siding that will protect your house against the elements, aluminium and steel siding are great options. The metal is less often used in residential buildings, but it is certainly available. It will protect your brick home from the elements for up to fifty years.
Brick and brick veneer houses last 50-100 years without siding, so you are weighing up the worth of another potential half-century for your house. The decision is yours as to whether springing for metal siding will be worth your while and house lifespan!
If you’re not so keen on the metal look, wooden siding also works very well. Wooden siding comes in many forms. Horizontal siding is quite popular, which gives your home almost a wooden façade. The wood is a much more traditional look (as metal provides a modern appearance) but will still last just as long as most metal siding.
Vinyl siding is among the most popular, as it’s affordable and relatively low maintenance. It will go well with your brick home in appearance and do a good job of protecting it from the elements at a lower cost. Because of its lower cost, it won’t last as long as wood or metal, usually around 20-30 years.
Any of these kinds of siding will work with your brick home, but they will need to be fitted properly to prevent risks of warping.
Why would you put siding over brick?
You would put siding over brick for the same reason you would put siding over any material: to protect your home from the elements. Brick is actually much more susceptible to damage from the elements than we realise.
In order to be able to bind properly with one another, bricks need to be porous. This allows the mortar mixture to seep into the bricks so that the bricks can form a strong wall. Because of this porousness, bricks absorb a lot of moisture when it rains. Over long time periods, this will eventually mean that the bricks can break and crack.
Siding prevents this by sealing the bricks behind a waterproof material. Whether vinyl, wood or metal, siding keeps air and moisture away from the wall in order to keep it strong for longer.
Whenever you’re working on bricks and house renovations, be sure to have the best quality bricklaying and masonry tools on hand! This includes having a great multi-purpose diamond saw blade for cutting materials to the perfect shape for your project, such as siding! Paragon Masonry Tools are here to help with your bricklaying and masonry needs. Be sure to keep an eye on our resources for interesting bricklaying and house tips!