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Opinions: To paint shiplap or not to paint shiplap

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strantor

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#1
I'm 32 and my wife is 28. Our house is 2,100sf, but only because the previous owner converted the garage to a large bedroom. Before that it was probably 1,400sf. So the rooms and bathrooms are on the small side. It's a cute house, 50% brick, 50% shiplap siding. I've caught enough of the HGTV channel shows while flipping through cable stations and sitting in hospital waiting rooms to know that shiplap is a big deal and highly sought after (if TV is to be believed). I like our house but I am not sure if we will live here the rest of our lives, so resale value is a concern but not the only concern.

I like the rustic look of the bare weathered shiplap, but it's not a big deal for me. It's like I would prefer chrome door handles on my truck instead of black plastic ones, but I wouldn't get rid of a truck just because it had black plastic door handles. For my wife it's a much bigger deal. For her, this "ugly" weathered wood is like a truck that smokes, knocks, and breaks down any time you get out of towing range from home. She's been complaining more and more intensely about it each year for 3 years we've lived here, and I estimate by this time next year she'll be ready to part ways with it if nothing's been done about the shiplap. She wants it painted white, and she's committed to doing the work herself if I'll just let her do it.

I haven't given the green light for painting it because my impression is that the opinion of real estate community is that shiplap is not to be painted, and painting it kills its value. I don't know if that's correct at all, and if so, to what degree (looking for input here). Also, I personally prefer the rustic ("ugly") look over the white painted look, but as I said, it's not a big deal for me. If my preferences were the only concern, I would quickly concede and let her have her way because I know it's a much bigger deal for her.

So is there any possible compromise? Anything I can do to "liven up" the shiplap short of painting it? I hit a spot of it once with the pressure washer and noticed that it blasted away a lot of the weathering color and left what looked like newer wood. Maybe she would be OK with that... not sure. But I am hesitant to pressure wash the whole lot of it because the walls aren't IP69K rated, and I'm sure that some of that water being blasted at high pressure from an odd angle woukd find it's way into the walls and maybe cause mold/rot/swelling/cancer.

Maybe I should just rip off all the shiplap and sell it to one of those wannabe HGTV pickers? Replace it with white vinyl siding since it seems my wife would prefer the look of the downgrade. I don't know what to do... need advice.
 

strantor

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#2
I've attached some pictures of the house to illustrate the "ugliness" of the dark weathered shiplap. The last picture is of the detached garage, showing the difference between a weathered wall and a more pristine wall which is more protected from the elements.
 

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Eddyde

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#3
Paint it, don't believe the hype on those shows.
Edit- after seeing the pictures I see what you are talking about, it does look good. But as they say "happy wife happy life"... You could put vinyl siding over it so it could be restored in the future.
 
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strantor

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#4
Paint it, don't believe the hype on those shows.
I want to disregard the hype, but I feel like the hype is real. Those shows create the hype, and the hype has a part in driving the market, or at least that's how I see it. Thanks to those shows, what used to be just a type of siding is now something that people actively seek out, and cream their pants when they find it.

as they say "happy wife happy life"
Yeah, it's starting to affect my quality of life. I generally triage problems until their level of urgency leaves me no choice but to act. I'm nearing that point, hence looking for a direction in which to go.

You could put vinyl siding over it so it could be restored in the future.
Now That's something I hadn't thought of. I like it. I'll look into the cost of vinyl siding. I previously had only considered selling the shiplap to pay for the siding, but if the siding can be had for the same price or just a little more than having it professionally painted (because that's what I would do; I wouldn't trust the wife to paint it herself without somehow sucking me into it, and I loathe painting) then I would be more than happy to just cover it up. If/when we go to sell the house, it could still be a selling point, ("unmolested shiplap under the vinyl siding!")
 

vtcnc

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#5
I'm 32 and my wife is 28. Our house is 2,100sf, but only because the previous owner converted the garage to a large bedroom. Before that it was probably 1,400sf. So the rooms and bathrooms are on the small side. It's a cute house, 50% brick, 50% shiplap siding. I've caught enough of the HGTV channel shows while flipping through cable stations and sitting in hospital waiting rooms to know that shiplap is a big deal and highly sought after (if TV is to be believed). I like our house but I am not sure if we will live here the rest of our lives, so resale value is a concern but not the only concern.

I like the rustic look of the bare weathered shiplap, but it's not a big deal for me. It's like I would prefer chrome door handles on my truck instead of black plastic ones, but I wouldn't get rid of a truck just because it had black plastic door handles. For my wife it's a much bigger....
...paint it.
 

Nogoingback

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#6
If it's a choice between keeping your wife happy or possibly keeping a realtor happy some time in the future, the choice should
be obvious...
 

derf

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#7
That looks more like Dutchlap. The first thing to do no matter what is to clean it with some bleach or deck wash. Once you get rid of the darkness, it won't be an eyesore, then you can decide to paint it or just seal it with the natural color.
 

jdjax

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#8
You could stain it, there are many different color pigments that can be added to stain including white.
 

RJSakowski

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#9
If you paint it, you can never unpaint it. Faced with coming up with a compromise, I would push for a consensus on wood stain. You can preserve the rustic lookand keep the darkening wiith age under control. It looks like you have a detetched shed of similar construction. That could serve as your Guinea pig for your various options.

The vinyl siding could also work. Vinyl siding over existing siding means you will have to build out the window and door frames which changes the character of the structure. Vinyl also experiences large thermal expansion which is compensated for by leaving the siding loose. This provides homes for insects, etc.

BTW, I like the look of your home as is but I totally get the concept of a happy wife is a happy life. Good luck!
 

benmychree

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#10
So far as I know, that siding is not called shiplap, it is known hereabouts as "Channel Rustic". Shiplap has an angular profile when viewed from the end, and there may be several angular profiles in one board, looking like they are lapped over one another with about 2" of reveal. My house is sided with Channel Rustic, having been built in 1880. It has always been painted, or the siding would have deteriorated to the point of having to be replaced long ago. I doubt that your wife would be up to all the sanding necessary to prep for painting; bottom line, I cannot imagine leaving it unpainted.
 

jbolt

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#11
It is hard to tell from the photos but it may require a lot of prep work to get a decent paint job that will last and not look worse depending on the condition of the wood. Once painted it will have a maintenance cycle needing periodic repainting. You can't just paint wood once and forget about it. Might be worth getting a couple of quotes from professional painters and see what they think it will need prep wise.
 

dbq49

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#12
Use the chemicals to wash the siding, high pressure washing just blows away the softwood between the annular growth rings. Like sand blasting, it gives it a rough texture and lots of water in the wood( as you mentioned).
 

Winegrower

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#13
I’m with your wife. Trust her.
 

hermetic

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#14
tell her that if she paints it, she is responsible for painting it Forever! I would stain it, and as it looks like it has already been stained, it depends on what type of stain has been used as to whether it will take paint without a great deal of work or at least some sort of seperator coat. On weathered wood, about an hour in, she will wish she never started, if she wants a colour change, much less hassle and much less maintenance, fit plastic or steel siding!
 

MrWhoopee

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#15
I have been the owner of 2 houses with wood siding. In each case, some previous owner got tired of trying to keep paint on the wood and covered it with something requiring less maintenance. The first was done with asbestos tile, which was never painted. My wife wanted to paint it, but I refused, knowing that once you paint something it's an ongoing commitment. I did have all the trim and windows repainted, which seemed to satisfy her. She left anyway. My current home has vinyl 2 lap siding over rough-sawn 1x12. It requires no painting or maintenance beyond washing. It is, however fading from brown to a bluish color in areas with direct sun exposure. I would guess that in Texas the appearance of vinyl would begin to degrade within 10 years, despite the claims of the manufacturer, leaving you in the same situation with something that is very difficult to paint. Unfortunately, I live in an area of high wildfire danger, making vinyl a very poor choice. I'd love to have Hardie Plank or galvanized steel (flat or corrugated), though given the nature of the recent fires, it would make little difference.

I have a theory about the kind of work that you can interest a man in doing. It is related to the frequency with which the job must be done. The greater the frequency (monthly, weekly, daily), the less interested. After all, it will just need to be done again tomorrow. A job that can be done once in a lifetime? Now that's the kind of thing a man can get behind. Whether genetic or cultural, women generally seem to have a lower tolerance for dirt, disorder and disheveled appearance. Hence we find the traditional division of labor. This is, of course, a generalization. YMMV. Regardless, try to find a solution that will satisfy both of you with an eye to the long term.
 

T Bredehoft

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#16
I spent many hours installing shiplap lumber on cruiser deck houses. none of them had a 'reveal'.

Note that the extension E on the right is longer than the relief on the left.

1542600506248.png

On the boats, they were drilled for dowels before the profile was cut, then doweled and glued together, sanded flat.

Hope 1542600506248.png this goes through. Poo Didn't want to images.
 

derf

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#17
That's what I was trying to point out in post #7.....that siding is Dutch lap. The reason it is so dark is because it wasn't installed right. Cedar siding will turn dark when it can't breathe. If you pull it off, you'll probably find sheeting and house wrap or visqueen underneath. Same thing with cedar shake shingles on modern houses. I've seen cedar shingles rot within a year because they were laid on top of felt, and never get a chance to dry out.
Cedar shingles need to dry from the inside out, that's why they were nailed to furring strips on the rafters, not sheeting. The heat from the attic dissipates through the shingles.
My father was an "old school" roofer for 47 yrs.....he did teach me a few things.
 

FOMOGO

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#18
It's lap siding, but not ship lap. I was a GC for many years, and have put up a lot of cedar. I absolutely despise paint. Paint once, and you will be painting and scraping forever. Cedar, properly taken care of will last longer than we will. I have wainy edge cedar on my house, and every 6-7 years I pressure wash (just don't get carried away), and apply a penetrating sealer with a weed sprayer. After 35 yrs it still looks great. I think the natural cedar would have better resale. Mike
CIMG3495.JPG
 
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