Steel vs. Vinyl Siding: A Comparison

Every home remodeling project is an investment in the home itself – including the siding. A comparison of steel vs. vinyl siding can help you determine the right siding for your unique goals. Take a good look at these two products, and the details will reveal that one of these materials is clearly the better choice.

Why Siding Choice Can Make a Big Difference

Siding is often the first thing that people notice when approaching a home. Every single detail matters. If there’s mold on the home – that’s a big turnoff. If sections of the siding appear saggy or pulled out of place by the wind – that’s an eyesore. If the surface seems to be chipping or faded from the weather – that’s a red flag. Curb appeal is directly linked to home value, and any of these blemishes can cause it to crash.

Even if you aren’t planning on placing your home on the market, there are other reasons to take your siding selection seriously. The truth of the matter is, when aesthetic issues are present, there are often much bigger problems in store as well. Leaking walls, rodent infestations, energy efficiency problems – siding isn’t just there to make your home look attractive; it’s also there to provide legitimate protection against threats from the outside.

When comparing steel siding to vinyl, it’s important to remember that this isn’t an insignificant choice in the least. These two materials perform very differently, and the decision shouldn’t be taken lightly.

A Breakdown of Vinyl vs. Steel Siding

There is no one single siding solution that is flawless, but there is definitely a distinct difference between steel and vinyl siding when you weigh the pros and cons of each material. Take a look at steel siding and vinyl by category:

Fire Safety and Flammability

Vinyl siding is extremely flammable. Steel, on the other hand, has a Class A Fire Rating, which effectively makes the exterior safer in the event of fire. If you’ve ever had a house fire, you know how quickly fire can spread when flammable materials are present. For peace of mind and added security, it’s better to have a siding material that provides better protection.

Aesthetic Comparison

Aesthetically, these two materials are somewhat comparable in the sense that they are both available in a variety of styles and colors. With that said, most homeowners would argue that wood-style steel offers a much more realistic appearance than wood-style vinyl, simply because of the texture and color composition.

When comparing vinyl to steel siding, it’s also important to note that the appearance of vinyl can be compromised quite easily, since it is considered more susceptible to deterioration, due to moisture damage, sun exposure, and other environmental factors. Steel, by comparison, is designed and built to maintain its original aesthetic appearance.


This calls up the question of maintenance needs. The ongoing upkeep of vinyl siding reflects a noticeable difference. Steel siding is built with a corrosion-resistant barrier and requires no maintenance at all, besides the occasional rinse with a garden hose. Compare that with vinyl, which often needs to be repainted, readjusted, scrubbed down, and secured back into place after turbulent weather.

Affordability and Value

Here’s where the debate takes an interesting turn. Vinyl is sold at very affordable prices, which can mislead consumers into thinking that it’s the more affordable option overall. While vinyl does tend to have the better retail price, the upfront cost is quickly surpassed by maintenance needs and the shorter lifespan of vinyl siding.

In other words, when you compare the lifetime value of vinyl to steel siding, it becomes clear that steel siding provides better overall value. Because of its capacity to withstand the elements and last much longer without expensive repairs or replacement, steel is actually the better investment.

Weather Resistance

Sun, rain, humidity – these elements can cripple the appearance and functionality of siding. Viny tends to take a much bigger hit, commonly showing signs of moisture damage, mold growth, warped panels, and faded sections of siding that get more sun exposure.

Steel, on the other hand, has a UV protectant clear coat that helps block out the effects of sun exposure. In addition, the steel core is infused with a galvanizing alloy to prevent rust and corrosion, so moisture doesn’t pose a threat.

Impact and Durability

It doesn’t take an expert to predict that rigid, 26-gauge steel with a Class 4 Impact Rating will hold up much better than a thin piece of plastic siding. A durability comparison of vinyl to steel siding shows that steel provides much better protection against hail, fallen tree branches, and other minor impacts that threaten siding.

When completing a steel siding to vinyl comparison, the choice becomes clear.

Whether Lap, Log, or Board and Batten, TruLog Steel Siding Delivers

The classic wood-based siding options – lap, board and batten, and log – are classic for a reason: they look fantastic. Rediscover their beauty via steel siding from TruLog, where these styles are crafted to be durable, high-strength, and low-maintenance.

Contact the experts at TruLog today to explore heavy-duty steel siding products with gorgeous style selections!

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