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Key Siding Terms Every Homeowner Should Know

Technical terms are hard to avoid when discussing remodeling plans with contractors. Siding, in particular, has many unique terms that are not heard in casual conversation. In today’s post, the siding contractors at DryTech Roofing LLC discuss key siding terms you should be familiar with.

Key Siding Terms


In building terms, a “course” is a row of material that covers the span of a plane, such as a wall or a roof. For example, a siding contractor may talk about a “course of clapboard siding,” which means they’re referring to a long horizontal row of siding. It also applies to materials with vertical orientation, as in the case of board-and-batten siding.


Flashing is a strip of material that covers joints and seams, protecting them from water infiltration. You may already be familiar with the flashing that’s installed on roofing systems; it is also used on siding installations.


Siding contractors use the term “gauge” in reference to the thickness of the siding board. Thick gauge siding is generally more impact-resistant, and may allow deeper relief for more realistic wood grain. Most siding manufacturers often offer siding products in different gauges.


A “lap” is the part where two siding boards overlap. On a typical clapboard siding installation, the lap starts at about a third of the boards, which creates the familiar angled profile. Another example is Dutch lap siding, where beveled edges on the laps allow a flatter look after installation.

Weep Hole

Weep holes are small holes that are located at the end of siding boards. They prevent moisture from getting trapped under the siding boards by letting them “weep,” essentially functioning like vents. This helps keep moisture levels under the siding to a minimum and helps prevent mold growth and other problems associated with trapped moisture.

Wind Load

The wind load is the maximum sustained wind speed that the siding can withstand without breaking or getting torn off. Most siding products are rated to withstand over 100 miles per hour, or the equivalent of a Category 2 hurricane. Minimum required wind load varies depending on local building codes, which means you need to make sure your chosen siding contractor is aware of such codes before installation begins.

DryTech Roofing LLC is one of the leading vinyl siding contractors serving communities in Maryland. Give us a call at (240) 491-5600. You can also fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.