Siding is the exterior material, like a protective coat, that's applied to the walls of a house. The purpose of siding is to protect your home from the harsh effects of weather, and most importantly, to shed water and keep your house dry to prevent wood rot and mold.
There are many different siding materials from wood, to brick, stone, stucco and manufactured materials like vinyl and fiber cement. The key factors to consider when picking your siding are cost, maintenance and how the siding will affect your home's curb appeal.
In addition to our homeowner glossary, you can get more tips about siding for your home, in our homeowner library.
Saddle In roofing, a small structure that helps to channel surface water to drains. Frequently located in a valley, a saddle is often constructed like a small hip roof, or like a pyramid with a diamond-shaped base.
Sales Square – The quantity of prepared roofing required to cover 100 square feet (or 9.3 square meters) of roofing deck.
Saturated Felt – An asphalt-impregnated felt used as an underlayment between the roofing deck and roofing materials like shingles.
Scuppers – Used on flat roofs, scuppers help to quickly drain excess water.
Scuttle – A hatch that provides access to the roof from the interior of the building.
Sealant – A mixture of polymers, fillers, and pigments used to fill and seal joints where moderate movement is expected; unlike caulking, it cures to a flexible solid.
Seam Sealer – Liquid compound that fuses the seamed edges of vinyl flooring together.
Self-Sealing Shingles – Shingles containing factory-applied strips or spots of self-sealing adhesive, that are designed to adhere to the adjacent shingles lying above or underneath.
Seller Property Disclosure Statement – is a document where the seller must disclose all known problems and defects to the buyer.
Shading – Slight differences in shingle color that may occur as a result of normal manufacturing operations.
Shark Fin – An upward-curled felt sidelap or endlap.
Sheathing – Exterior grade boards used under siding or roofing materials.
Shed Roof – A roof containing only one sloping plane. Has no hips, ridges, valleys or gables.
Shelf Life – The maximum time packaged and unopened waterproofing materials can remain usable.
Shingles – Refers to the shape of construction materials designed for installation with similar units in overlapping rows. Shingles may refer to asphalt roofing shingles, shingles on a wood shake roof or siding made from wood shingles, made popular by houses built in the Shingle Style architecture.
Sill – The horizontal bottom of a window or exterior door frame.
Simulated Appliance Foot-Drag Test – The drag test measures a sheet vinyl floor's resistance to rips, tears and gouges. In a controlled test, an appliance-type foot loaded with weight is pulled across a vinyl floor to simulate a consumer moving a heavy object without proper protection.
Site Finished – Hardwood floors that are stained with color and sealed with a multiple layers of a protective finish, at the house.
Slippage – Relative lateral movement of adjacent components of a built-up membrane. It occurs mainly in roofing membranes on a slope, sometimes exposing the lower plies or even the base sheet to the weather.
Slope – The degree of roof incline expressed as the ratio of the rise, in inches, to the run, in feet.
Smooth-Surfaced Roof /strong> – A built-up roof without mineral aggregate on the surface.
Soffit Vents– The finished underside of the roof eaves. To remember the fascia (the vertical trim under the roof) from the soffit, when I look at the roof I'm Facing the Fascia. When I'm tired from working on the roof, I remember I can sleep on the Soffit.
Softening Point – The temperature at which a bitumen becomes soft enough to flow as determined by an arbitrary, closely defined method.
Softening Point Drift – A change in the softening point during storage or application.
Soil Stack – A vent pipe that penetrates the roof.
Solid – Manufactured from a solid piece of wood.
Solvent – Liquid, usually volatile, which is used in the manufacture of water repellents and paints to dissolve or disperse the chemicals used, i.e., resins, solids. These solvents evaporate during the drying process, like VOCs.
Spacers – Small pieces of wood used in the initial step in the installation of laminate to maintain a 1/4″ expansion zone.
Species – The type of tree, such as oak, cherry or walnut. Different wood species have different hardness’s that affect durability; graining, which affects the board’s look; and indigenous color, which can be kept natural or stained.
Split – A membrane tear resulting from tensile stress.
Sponge Test for Wood Rot – A simple test you can use on wood like window sills, decks or a bathroom cabinet, to identify wood rot that needs to be repaired.
Spud – To remove the roofing aggregate and most of the bituminous top coating by scraping and chipping.
Square – A unit of roof measure covering 100 square feet.
Stair Nosing – A finishing piece applied to the forward edge of stairs, step-downs and landings, creating a rounded quality finish.
Standard Engineered – The traditional construction for engineered hardwood boards and laminate products. These products require the pieces to be glued to each other prior to installing over the subfloor.
Standard Installation System – Method of installing laminate flooring by precisely placing continuous beads of laminate flooring glue on the top of the tongue and the bottom of the groove of adjoining laminate flooring planks.
Starter Strip – Asphalt roofing applied at the eaves that provides protection by filling in the spaces under the cutouts and joints of the first course of shingles.
Straight-Edge – Any strong, straight piece of metal that can be used for cutting straight lines for installing vinyl sheet and tile.
Steep Slope Application – Method of installing asphalt shingles on roof slopes greater than 21 inches per foot.
Step Flashing – (1) The technique of sealing a joint between metal and built-up membrane with one or two plies of felt or fabric and hot- or cold-applied bitumen; (2) The technique of taping joints between insulation boards or deck panels.
Strip – Board widths that are less then 3″ in width.
Strip Shingles – Asphalt shingles that are approximately three times as long as they are wide.
Stringers – A horizontal timber used to support joists or other cross members.
Stripping – Strip flashing: (1) the technique of sealing a joint between metal and built-up membrane with one or two plies of felt or fabric and hot- or cold applied bitumen; (2) the technique of taping joints between insulation boards or deck panels.
Structural Integrity – A term often used in a guarantee or warranty to assure the floor’s composition/construction will remain intact.
Structural A term applied to those members in a structure that carry an imposed load in addition to their own weight.
Stucco A cement plaster used to cover exterior wall surfaces; usually applied over a wood or metal lath base.
Stud/strong – An upright post in the framework of a wall for supporting an approved interior material such as gypsum wallboard.
Sub Fascia – An unexposed board nailed across the ends of the rafters at the eaves to which the facia is nailed as the finished exposure.
Subfloor – The structural layer intended to provide the home's floor support, which may receive floor coverings directly if the surface is appropriate, or indirectly via an underlayment if its surface is not suitable.
Substrate – Structure or envelope components to which waterproofing materials or systems are applied.
Sustainability – The World Commission on Environment and Development definition that describes sustainability as: “Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”
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