Siding Replacement in the Midwest

We at PondVIew install thousands of yards of siding each year, and to some of you it might be odd to hear that we don’t recommend vinyl siding for everyone. Many of our customers enjoy a rustic feel of aluminum or hardwood siding. If however, you prefer vinyl siding and the benefits that come along with it keep reading!

Now since all of our customers are located in the Michigan area and experience cold winters and hot summers, we would like to take this time to provide our readers with the most accurate information for deciding if vinyl siding or insulated vinyl siding is best for their home improvement project.

Vinyl Siding vs. Insulated Vinyl Siding

When considering a home improvement decision between vinyl siding and insulated vinyl siding, the following considerations should always be thoroughly vetted between your needs and the performance the siding:

  • Cost – How much are you willing to spend?
  • Appearance – How do you want your home to look?
  • Energy Savings – What type of ROI are you looking for?
  • Installation – How was your home built? How would you like the siding installed?
  • Durability – What type of weather conditions will your siding be exposed to?
  • Moisture – What type of humidity is common in your area?
  • Resale value – Are you looking at this as a major improvement to increase the value of your home?

Cost of installation (initial and lifetime)

One of the first questions we get for a vinyl installation job is how much does it cost? And the answer we always give is, “it depends.” It depends on the location and size of your home, the number of windows and doors that need to be sealed or worked around, the trim and accents you choose, and many other considerations. If you’re doing a search for “siding contractors near me”, then you may want to touch up on how cost can impact your siding installation.

Insulated vinyl siding can range in cost anywhere from $3.00 to $15.00 per square foot and installed on your home. The installed cost takes into account the siding raw material cost, labor cost of installation, removal of existing siding, and disposal of existing siding. While some jobs may fall out of this range depending on the materials installed and condition of your home, it does give a good range of what to expect. Another factor impacting cost is the color and performance of your siding, which we will get into at a later point.

Regardless of your choose, vinyl is the lowest maintenance and highest performance siding option available on the market today. The reduced maintenance eliminates painting, scraping, and caulking of traditional siding materials.

Desired siding appearance

The main reason people are looking to replace their siding is to improve the external appearance of their home. Considering this is a huge factor in determining curb appeal, it is almost always an easy bump in value.

Insulated vinyl siding comes standard with a solid foam core and custom exterior finishes and colors. Many of these colors come with IR reflective pigment packaged further reducing the heating and cooling cost of your home. The foam insulation also helps level the wall under the siding and reduce impact of your home settling.

Lastly, insulated vinyl siding products are much more resistant to cracking and denting. This is due to the foam core absorbing most of the impact and protecting the exterior siding. So if you have kids who are into sports, or panels that are subject to impact damage from rocks, baseballs, hail, or other projectiles insulated vinyl siding is a great option.

Energy Savings & Comfort

Wrapping your home in tyvek or installing that pink foam is a great starting point to improving the energy efficiency of your home. However, the largest impact to improving your energy efficiency comes from insulated vinyl siding. In fact, third party research proves that insulated siding material with a solid foam core can reduce heating and cooling costs by up to 14%.

Insulated vinyl siding is the equivalent of wrapping a thermal blanket around your home which helps keep the heat inside during the winter and outside during the summer, adding up to large savings year round.


The part of vinyl siding installation which takes the most skill, is working around the window and door openings. We use special tools to trim the siding to the exact dimensions required by your home. In some cases, windows need to be removed prior to installation of siding.

Consider the difficulty of installation while you are looking for quotes from your local siding contractor, and know that PondView provides the highest level of quality in each installation.


Vinyl siding is time tested and proven to be the most durable siding option with the least amount of maintenance required. Many advancements in technology have improved the durability of vinyl by including a solid foam core in the construction. This insulation barrier adds a contoured foam around the exterior of your home which completely fills the air gaps between your walls and the siding with foam.

This foam core improves impact resistance and energy efficiency. IR reflective packages incorporated into the vinyl siding colors further improve energy efficiency.

Benefits of Non-Insulated Vinyl Siding:

Non-insulated vinyl siding is ideal for homeowners in the following conditions:

  • Have a lower budget for the siding project
  • Aren’t as energy conscious or concerned with long term durability
  • Are planning to install the siding yourself

Insulated Vinyl Siding Works Well If You:

Insulated vinyl siding is ideal for homeowners in the following conditions:

  • Those who plan to stay in a home for multiple years and wish to protect and insulate their home from damage.
  • Are willing to spend more upfront for long term savings.
  • Are aware of the additional installation costs associated with solid core siding.

Window Replacement Guide – Midwest

New windows are second only to new siding that a realtor or new homeowner looks at when assessing the value of your home. New windows will enhance the look of your home, make it more energy efficient, less drafty, and a brilliant investment to improve your home. New windows are easy to clean and maintain and no longer come with the storm windows, so reduced maintenance is a plus as well.

If you’re planning on staying in your home, saving money every month is nothing to scoff at either. New and energy efficient windows can save between $27 to $111 a month on electrical and heating costs. With that in mind, it could take as little as a few years to make your investment profitable. This reduction in energy costs is based on Energy Star certified windows which lower the energy cost on average by 12% per month. Depending on the size of your home, the savings can be huge.

How we choose the best window brand and style

We have been in the industry for over 30 years and have seen technological advancements in window IR reflective coatings, more durable adhesives and sealants, and even advancements in the materials used for the windows such as vinyl and fiberglass composites. Through our industry knowledge we choose the best brands to keep your home safe, secure, dry, and comfortable year round. Through our testing we have analyzed more than 25 window brands and frame material across both double hung and casement type windows. Through our evaluation we only sell window brands and types where the window creates a barrier between your home and the elements. Given the higher cost and the potential return on investment, our customers can feel safe that the windows that they are buying will last and perform as expected.

Ways to Save money on window replacement

The easiest way to save money on a window replacement is by only replacing the window! If your window frame and sills are still in good shape, you won’t always need to pull them out and do a full replacement. Replacing partial units is a great way to reduce the installation cost of windows. Contact us for a pocket replacement estimate for your windows. If you decide you want a different color or material, a full window replacement may be necessary. A full window replacement includes the installation of the window frame, sill, and other window components attached to the outside of the wall.

The US government also offers federal tax credits for the installation of energy efficient windows. Several state and local governments offer additional rebates as well.

Pondview is your local expert window installation company

Selecting the window that performs the way that is most important to you – balancing cost and performance, is only the initial step. Installing the window so it performs as advertised is just as critical. Pondview is trained and is certified by Pella to guarantee that your investment is installed properly.

Glass Housings: Window Materials

The most popular window materials in the United States are vinyl and wood. Wood windows are generally installed by home builders whereas, vinyl windows are the most popular replacement windows. With vinyl you eliminate many aspects of maintenance associated with owning windows.

Wood Frame

Many windows are first installed using a solid wood frame and window. These often come with composite attachments such as plastic or metal. These attachments range from cranks to locks. Wood offers a variety of different finishes and styles.

Vinyl Frame

Vinyl offers an excellent balance between cost and performance. This window does not need to be stained, painted, or maintained like wood windows do. In many cases, a casual viewer doesn’t notice the difference between wood and vinyl finishes.

Fiberglass Frame

Fiberglass frame material is relatively new to the market in the last 4-5 years or so. These have the benefits of vinyl, as well as added strength.

Pond View Guide to Different Window Types

Home Window Types by Pond View Windows and Doors

Many of our readers are considering or have considered replacing windows or in some instances even installing new window types into an existing home! There are a ton of windows that serve a unique purpose, and all come with their own set of pros and cons. For the best shot at finding the best window replacement company we recommend talking to your local window contractor.

Single or Double Hung Windows

Single hung windows are perhaps the most common window in the United States and Canada. The bottom parts of the single hung window are able to move up and down however the top part of the window restricts this action. This restricted action allows for a greater seal between the top of the window and the frame. This better seal allows for slightly better energy efficiency compared to a double hung window.

The double hung windows are a better option if you are willing to forego the factory seal and allow for an easier to clean and more versatile window.  See the below diagram to visually highlight the differences.

Difference in window types and sash types between single and double hung windows
Diagram credit from


Casement and Hinged Windows

Casement windows always come with some type of hinge to allow for the windows to swing open. The degree to which each of the windows swing depends on what you install and what is possible in your home.  Many homeowners restrict the window to only open up 90 degrees, while others allow for a near 180 degree hinge. Casement windows are excellent insulators because of the fewer moving parts as well as the factor welded parts being immovable.

Egress window for a basement
Egress window photo credit

Egress Windows

One of the most overlooked window types, the egress windows, are common in residential homes which have a basement. The main purpose is to allow people to escape from the basement

or another enclosed area in the event of an emergency. While many homeowners consider glass block windows in their basement due to the tight seal, they can prove to be dangerous in the event of a fire. In addition to being a safety consideration, these windows allow for light to easily enter the basement.


Awning Windows

Awning are very similar to garden windows or small kitchen windows. They are hinged at the top and always swing open or upward. They are popular because with a simple screen, they can be open in the rain or in the sun. Awnings are another iconic window option.


Picture Windows

A picture window is exactly what it sounds like, a window which displays a picturesque view of your yard. These windows generally don’t open, but always provide you with the most natural light and most stunning view.


Glass Block Windows

We nearly left this window type off of our list because many window contracting companies will not perform this type of installation. Glass block windows require mason work for their installation and replacement, and many window companies do not keep one on their staff.


Home Improvement Resources

For other home improvement needs such as vinyl siding visit us here.

Siding Repair Itemized List Of Costs


Every home will reach a point when you will need to repair the siding. This is despite the fact that materials for most sliding are usually very durable. Before contacting any contractor for the repairs you should understand the following items will have an impact on the total job cost:

Wood Siding

The first type of material that a prospective buyer needs to know is wood siding. This is the highest of maintenance siding because it requires painting and caulking so that it can remain looking good and functional. Whether you paint it, stain it, or finish it, wood will always require the most maintenance to look and work well. Furthermore, wood is easily damaged by insects, rot, splitting and warping.

Aluminum Siding

The second most common material is aluminum siding which requires lesser maintenance. It has a metallic finish, and is priced moderately. On the downside, it produces more noise than most other siding materials during the rain or gusty winds. Replacing the aluminum siding is a rather simple task if it is just a single panel or two, but is generally more expensive than wood siding, unless the wood is finished or stained. Lastly, if it is painted it will be relatively easy to match the colors exactly.

Vinyl Siding

The most popular type of siding is vinyl siding. It is the most popular due to the extensive benefits such as durability against the elements such as wind, rain, and degradation. Unlike wood it does not decay or get attacked by termites. It also does not require painting such as the one wood and aluminum require for it is generally cleaned when it rains. Furthermore, it is easier to replace even though it might be challenging to exactly match the repaired sections.

Cement Fiber Siding

The latest development in residential siding is cement fiber. This is mainly because it is durable, it
requires low maintenance and it is made using recyclable materials. This is important especially when it comes to maintaining the environment. Additionally, it does not rot or get attacked by insects. But you can expect to pay about 5% to 14% more in material and installation costs when doing complex installation configurations and patterns.

Repairing Damaged Siding

In the event that your siding becomes damaged, a panel or two may need to be replaced or repaired before the rest of the home. Depending on what type material and the color or finish of the material will determine the extend of repairing costs. Wood repairs are by far the most difficult to color and appearance match, whereas the vinyl siding is the easiest as it is commonly replaced and mass produced. The majority of window or siding contractors will install and replace the building papers such as Tyvak when repairing or replacing the siding.

Siding Repair and replacement building paper

Locating Matching Materials

When installing or replacing siding, many homeowners try to keep an extra slab or two of whatever material is used to finish their home. If you have the remaining siding from the original installation you can use them for replacement.  These will almost exactly match the color an appearance minus whatever UV degradation may have occurred (usually minimal).

The Repair

There are certain costs which are not usually included in the cost estimates from your contractor. These costs include; structural modifications or repairs, removal and disposal of existing siding and trim and any work on soffit or fascia. It is paramount to ensure that you ask for these
costs. In conclusion, save any matching material from original or additional installation. And make sure you understand a complete breakdown of the costs associated with the full installation job.

Siding Installation Costs

Siding Prices and Estimates in Michigan

The exterior of your home is the first thing visitors and passerby’s see. We’ve all heard don’t judge a book by its cover, but when your siding is falling off or in disarray, it can be difficult not to! Whether you’re considering siding because you are building a new home, updating your current home, or to give you a fresh look to improve the value of your investment, new siding will be your best friend the whole way.

Over the years the choices of siding has grown from only wood to vinyl, engineered wood, James Hardie, and aluminum siding.  While all of these can provide your home with an updated look, each of them will have a different impact on the aesthetic appeal and more importantly the cost of installation. In addition to the type of material you have to keep in mind that siding contractors will come to your home and likely remove the existing siding. So other factors that professionals will need to consider are the size of your home, the shape of your home, and how accessible the siding is for installation as well as removal. So when you get a quote be sure to understand the material cost, as well as the labor cost associated with it.


Price Factors For Siding

As we discussed earlier in this article, the most obvious pricing factor for new siding is the type of siding material that you would like installed. Occasionally, there are premiums for different colors of siding primarily due to the high IR reflective coating on them. This is true mainly for the high end types of vinyl siding where you are able to have dark colors which reflect the majority of the IR sunlight, reducing energy costs. But for the most part, the following are the primary drivers of cost:


If you are just going for a refreshing look in siding, then you may be tempted to get the cheaper versions of the siding, and while that may save you money in the short term you will end up with higher heating costs in the long term. We are not trying to convince you of getting only the highest end insulated siding, but we at Pond View Windows always like to have our customers make informed decisions. So for a new look or color, the cheaper variants may be your choice. For those in Midwestern climates (like us) the insulated siding may be the best bet for you in the long run.

Home Size

I am continually amazed by people selecting the siding that costs ~$1 per square foot, and then having them amazed at the material cost.  Keep in mind that the exterior of your home is massive! We are trying to cover every inch of it in material.  So the larger the exterior of your home, the more material is required to cover it. This will add to the material cost, as well as the time required to install the siding.

Home Shape / Accessibility

Remember, you are having contractors come to your home to do the installation for you. This means if they need to climb into obscure places for the installation, that will require more time and again a higher installation cost.  A simple box shaped house is significantly easier to install siding on as opposed to one with multiple stories and architectural bends to them.

Removing Old Siding

There is the installation cost, the material cost, and finally, the cost to remove the existing siding. While some styles of siding can be installed directly over the old, it is more likely that the existing siding will need to be removed and disposed of. So if you are looking to estimate the cost, keep in mind the removal and disposal cost of siding.

Estimating the Cost of Siding

Finally, the home size, shape, old siding, and new siding, all have impacts on the price. But when it comes down to estimating how much siding will cost for your home, always break it down to material cost as well as labor cost for removal and installation. In the end the most important factors will be how, long will the job take and what material are you putting up.

I hope you enjoyed this article, and stay tuned for our next article on how to estimate siding costs.