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Steel Siding vs Vinyl Siding for Mobile Homes and Vinyl Siding Cost

Steel and vinyl siding are two popular exterior siding choices for mobile homes exterior. Each option has its own advantages and disadvantage. In his blog post we will go over the details so you can decide what will increase your mobile home value without hurting your wallet.

Mobile Home Siding Maintenance

Mobile Home owners tend to pick materials over wood for their siding requirements due to lower maintenance aspects. Wood tends to peel, warp, and even rot. Wood is also prone to certain problems involving insect activity. Steel won’t have these same problems and that makes it more enticing to homeowners. Unfortunately, steel is not as low maintenance as it may seem. As a metal, steel siding tends to fade as time goes by. This leads to the color turning chalky. 

Mobile Home Siding Durability

Steel is more durable compared to wood. However, it can’t be considered a long-lasting product, especially when placed at this location of the home. Just like with any type of steel, rusting can occur if a portion gets left unpainted or scratched. As soon as rust begins to appear, the integrity of this steel siding already becomes compromised. 

Denting is another reason that may affect the durability of a steel siding. A stray baseball or bigger-than-usual hailstones can easily damage a steel siding with unsightly marks. A siding is intended to hide unappealing elements on a structure but as soon as the siding gets damaged or dented, the purpose of the siding is no longer served.

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Installation and Cost

When you compare steel to aluminum, its installation is more labor-intensive. The process of cutting steel is noisy as well and this may bother neighbors, especially if cutting needs to be done on-site. Installation of steel siding is rarely DIY. An experienced installer is required to get a steel siding properly installed. In addition, a damaged portion requires a whole metal sheet to be replaced, which is more expensive and more difficult compared to replacing just one piece of vinyl.

Considering something expensive may sound subjective but when comparing steel to other material types of siding, it’s definitely not the cheaper option. A steel siding can range from $5.00-$10.00 per square foot and when you compare it to vinyl siding, the latter only ranges from $3.00-$6.00. Different factors affecting the price include the gauge, panel profile, and paint system. As the steel gets thicker, the price increases with it. The paint systems affect price based on the higher quality applied.


When compared to other non-metal sidings, steel transfers heat much faster between the exterior and the living area. This leads to higher energy costs and requires more indoor temperature regulation. Placing an insulating material just beneath the steel could make the design of the house more energy-efficient. In addition, steel is a non-renewable resource. The manufacturing of steel requires a large amount of energy. 

Coastal Climate Incompatibility

Homeowners living near the ocean would not benefit from having steel siding. It would not be a smart choice to install steel siding near the ocean because the salty air common in coastal regions causes corrosion damage. Rust will quickly appear on steel sidings and would need to be replaced more often and that would lead to more costly expenditures. 

Steel may not be practical for coastal homes but there are other metals such as aluminum, stainless steel, and copper that are corrosion-resistant. Choosing the right materials is highly essential to save money. The maintenance and longevity of these materials should be a top priority wherever a house may be located. 


A smart mobile home owner must know the importance of siding to a home. The reason for a siding should not just be aesthetic in purpose. As a result, knowing the best material option for a siding is essential to save on costs. Steel siding as an option may have some advantages but the disadvantages mentioned above should be glaring enough to come up with an assumption that there are better options compared to steel. The drawbacks of steel siding definitely outweigh the majority of its benefits. 

Steel siding may seem enticing as a choice for homeowners but this should always be analyzed properly with the conditions and location of any house. Weather conditions for a certain location should never be underestimated when choosing materials for the exterior of a home. Selecting the right materials for the right conditions will serve a huge purpose for long-term use. Not only will homeowners benefit from fewer repairs or replacements but also have better peace of mind while staying inside their homes. 


How Much Does Vinyl Siding Cost?

Installing vinyl siding on your home typically costs between $7,250 and $23,200, or $15,225 on average. The price can reach $32,800 when installing premium vinyl materials on a large 3,500-square-foot home. Materials range from $3 to $11 per square foot, and you’ll pay another $2 to $5 per square foot for labor.

Vinyl Siding Costs

Type of CostAmount
Average Cost$15,225
Highest Cost$32,800
Lowest Cost$4,000

What Is the Cost of Vinyl Siding by Style?

Vinyl siding comes in many styles, ranging from $3 to $11 per square foot. Smooth and clapboard house siding styles are the most affordable, while log siding comes with premium prices. Use the table below to explore the price range for each design.

Vinyl Siding Cost by Style

Vinyl Siding StyleCost Per Square Foot
Dutch lap$4–$6
Cedar texture$4–$6
Shake profile$6–$7
Board and Batten$5–$9
Log Look$5–$11


Smooth siding costs $3 to $4.50 per square foot. This style has a smooth, untextured surface that creates a clean, modern look. The plain surface makes the color pop, helping improve your home’s curb appeal instantly.


The price of clapboard siding is between $3 and $5 per square foot. Also known as traditional lap siding, this style features long boards installed horizontally with a slight overlap. In addition to looking fantastic, this design elevates vinyl’s natural weather-resistant properties.


Expect to pay around $4 to $6 per square foot for beaded vinyl siding. A true Southern classic, this style has a small bead or groove along the bottom of each board. Although the details are small, beaded siding can make homes look more sophisticated and refined. 

Dutch Lap

Dutch lap siding costs around $4 to $6 per square foot. This style has handcrafted appeal due to the bevel cut at the top of each plank. The distinctive shadow line creates a classic look that many homeowners favor.

Cedar Texture

The price of cedar texture siding is around $4 to $6 per square foot. The realistic cedar grain adds visual appeal without having to worry about the drawbacks of wood siding. You can get cedar texture on vinyl boards, shakes, and other popular styles.

Shake Profile

If you want vinyl shake siding, it’ll cost about $6 to $7 per square foot. The shake shingle profile makes it look like real cedar, but it won’t weather and break apart like wood eventually does. The hand-sawn texture creates a unique exterior design that emits rustic charm.


Scalloped vinyl siding costs anywhere from $4 to $9 per square foot. Its design is similar to cedar shakes, except each piece has a rounded edge at the bottom. Although it’s often used as gable accents, it’s particularly striking when used as the primary siding choice.

Board and Batten

Board and batten siding costs anywhere from $5 to $9 per square foot. This vertical vinyl siding style has wide boards separated by thin batten strips installed over the seams. Its vertical pattern has a retro vibe, setting your home design apart from the rest.

Log Look

Vinyl log look siding is around $5 to $11 per square foot. This material is reminiscent of log cabin but with plenty of modern flair. You can get yours with a subtle wood grain or go with the rough-cut style for rural elegance.

What Does Vinyl Siding Cost by Size?

The total cost of your vinyl siding project largely depends on the size of your home. Larger homes require more materials and labor hours. If you live in an 800-square-foot home, you may pay as little as $4,000. Re-siding a 3,500-square-foot home starts at $10,250 and can reach $32,800.

Vinyl Siding Cost by Home Size

Home Size (by square feet)Average Cost (Installed)

Which Factors Impact How Much Vinyl Siding Costs?

The vinyl siding style and the square footage of your home are important, but they’re not the only things to consider. Several additional factors can influence the total cost of your home improvement project regarding siding, including material quality and customizations.

Material Quality

Standard vinyl siding materials can make up $4,350 to $15,950 of the total cost of upgrading a 2,000-square-foot home. Getting a lower or higher quality siding material grade could change the price.

Builder’s grade siding is as little as $2 per square foot. The savings come at the expense of potential compromises in durability and aesthetics. It can work in a pinch, though, if you’re in immediate need of siding and have a limited budget.

Premium siding can cost nearly twice as much as standard grade, primarily due to its increased thickness. The robust finish increases durability and offers more protection from the weather. You can also get insulated vinyl siding that improves your home’s energy efficiency. Although you’ll pay more upfront, the extra insulation can save you money on utility bills.

Labor Rate

Professional installers charge around $2 to $5 per square foot to install vinyl siding. This usually works out to about $50 to $100 per hour. If your home is 2,000 square feet, you may pay around $2,900 to $7,250 for labor costs.

You might pay more than that if your home has a complex exterior design, multiple levels, or other factors that increase how long it takes to complete the installation process. Timing can also play a role in the total labor rate. Having the job done in the summer or other peak times can result in higher costs.

Home Design

Installing vinyl siding on single-story homes with straightforward exterior designs costs $15,225, according to the national average. If your home has a second story, the price could go up by 35% due to the need for additional materials and labor, increasing the total to $20,560.

Complex home designs, like Victorian and Queen Anne styles, can increase the price even more. Although these designs don’t usually need more materials, installers have to take additional time to measure, cut, and install each piece of siding.

Property Location  

The location of your home can impact your vinyl siding project costs. If your home is in a remote area, delivery of materials could be more expensive. If you live in a big city, you might pay more for labor due to the higher demand for professional home improvement services.

Where you live also determines whether you’ll need to get a building permit and inspections. If so, you may pay hundreds of dollars more to complete your siding installation project regardless of whether you DIY or hire a professional.


Adding your own personal touch to the siding installation can come at a hefty cost. Installers base their labor rate on a straightforward installation. If you want more flair, like a diagonal design, it’ll cost more for labor. Material costs could go up as well, depending on the exact cuts needed.

If you don’t like any of the vinyl colors, you can have the siding painted to the tune of $2,500 to $5,000. Going with a more decorative trim design can add $1,000 or more to the final price. Adding new gutters as a finishing touch? Expect to pay an additional $1,500 to $5,000.

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What Are the Benefits of Investing in Vinyl Siding?

Vinyl siding offers many benefits that set it apart from other options, which makes it a worthwhile investment. Vinyl comes in various styles, colors, and textures, allowing you to customize your home’s exterior design to your liking. It’s also quick to install, so you can transform your home’s look in less than a week.

It’s particularly popular due to its excellent balance of affordability and durability. Although it’s the most cost-effective siding material, vinyl can last up to 40 years with minimal maintenance. In fact, it’s so low maintenance that you just have to clean it with a pressure washer once a year to keep it looking its best. You never have to paint it, either, as you would with fiber cement siding.

Beyond that, vinyl is resistant to many things that affect other types of siding. Unlike wood, it won’t rot or get damaged by pests. It’s also unlikely to fade in the sunlight and doesn’t need to be sealed to keep moisture out. In comparison to stucco, vinyl siding won’t start warping or cracking from excess moisture or extreme temperatures. And it’s not as easy to dent as aluminum siding.

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