waves in vinal

Could I get some help… I know the first thing everyone is going to say is can I post a pic… I took pics but its so hard to see… I was walking around the side of a home I inspected looked up (into the sunlight) and saw waves in the siding. It was difficult to tell at first if it was in fact the siding or the sun playing tricks on me.

Any thoughts on what might cause this?

I’d appreciate the help on this one. Thanks in advance.


Nailed to tight?

Yeah I’ve seen quite a few posts indicating that might be the problem… If that be the case what are the long term issues?? Is this something that the customer could expect to get worse or destroy the vinal?

well it doesn’t tend to get better with age Sean and ugly is ugly…over nailing vinyl siding is not something that goes away with time you have to mechanically relieve the stress to fix the problem…

Thank you for the input… I can appreicate how its not going to go away with time however I’m wondering will it get any worse with time? Is it possible to leave it and not see further adverse affects? Oddly enough this home had just been inspected three months prior and the previous inspector didn’t notice it. To be honest it was barely noticable especially since the sun was behind it but when I pointed it out the owner could see it as well (which made me a bit happy because for a minute I honestly thought I was seeing things).

One of the things he mentioned that the previous inspector pointed out and I didn’t was putting covers over the window wells. I notice there weren’t any trees on the property and the landscaping had been completed. Don’t think we’ll see a lot of leaves and debris getting into them… do you all recommend this as well? I’ve never heard of anyone recommending this.

Also he was advised to put a battery back up on the sump??? I was a bit confused by this as well as the sump rarely operates even in wet conditions. How long did the last inspector really expect the power to be out? Is this something you guys would recommend?

Obviously neither of these are deficiencies but they were recommendations. The owner kinda expected to hear them from me since the last inspector had made these recommendations. Thoughts?


Simply note that you viewed a wavy effect on the siding (and location) and note that it may be due to over-tightening of the siding hardware. Done.

I recommend window well covers in my area, because everyone (that doesn’t utilize the covers) will eventually get leaves and snow in them. I like to keep these wells clean and clear of everything that will tend to get in there.

Battery back-up on a sump? That’s a homeowners decision and it has nothing to do with a home inspection. I do not recommend battery back-ups, but I do always recommend a secondary sump pump get installed and piped (with a wye fitting) into the existing drain line. This pump should sit beside the existing pump on a brick (which will make this pump higher than the existing pump). This secondary pump will activate if the primary pump fails or the sump hole gets overburdened with water.

Always, especially with a finished basement. Sumps are most needed during heavy thunderstorms. Highest probability of electrical outage… thunderstorms. Around here the outages sometimes last for days. I actually prefer the models that are “powered” by the city water supply as a backup, over the battery ones. The batter lasts about 4 hours. The water supply needs no power, and only uses about 1 gal of fresh water for every 2 or 3 of dirty water siphoned out. Pretty cool systems for backups.

Thanks everyone. I completed my report this morning and spoke to the customer who is very happy with the information provided to him. Customer is a first time home owner and puchased this five year old custom home and is absolutly freaked about it. As I mentioned, this is his second inspection in 3 months.

One more question… (maybe it should be in the electrical section but i’m sure someone will help me out here…)

he did have a double tap in the panel but it seemed to be a wire for the digital display on the outside of the house… is this ok? I noted it as a double tap that should be corrected… i figured that no double tap is good.

Some panels allow double wires to a single breaker like some Square D’s do. Hope you understand what I mean cause the coffee has not kicked in yet:D


I always recommend a battery backup from my own personal experience. On my 10th wedding anniversary we were away all day and at my home we had gotten 4" of rain in less than an hour. (the morons that built the house tied the gutters into the sump). The power went out and we came home about 1am to find over a foot of water in the basement. So I will always suggest it.

The vinyl could be fastened to close to the J-channel also, that could cause the waves. When the vinyl heats up it gets longer thus pushing against the J channel causing the buckling. A common problem when vinyl is put on in cold weather.

Sean another reason for the window well covers is that alot do not have any drainage in them and can fill up with water in heavy storms or snow during the winter. The water can likely leak in around the window. Still need to arrange that coffee meeting.