Action 9: Some homeowners seeing vinyl siding melting

by: Jason Stoogenke Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Some people in the Charlotte area are seeing the vinyl siding on their homes melting.  In many cases, it's their neighbor's fault, but he or she doesn't even know.
Darius Czekaj lives in Mount Holly and remembers the first time he saw his siding was rippling, buckling, and warping. 

"It looked like someone just took a heat gun and (blow torching sound)," he said.
Czekaj researched it and found his neighbor's window may be the problem, reflecting the sun on his home and baking it for hours.  So he bought a heat gun and says he measured 181 degrees on a 35-degree day.
Action 9 found report after report from a glass company, a lab, the National Association of Home Builders, the Vinyl Siding Institute, and even the North Carolina Building Code Council, basically saying, yes, this can happen with certain energy efficient windows if certain factors line up a certain way.
It seems to happen when the sun is in a certain spot, its rays hit a low-E double-paned window, bounce off, and cook the neighbor's vinyl siding.  But the Window and Door Manufacturers Association defends the windows, saying they're supposed to reflect the sun and that the problem is rare.  When Action 9 asked WDMA's Jeff Inks, "Is there any concern in the industry that this is a bigger problem or these windows need to be adjusted?" Inks replied, "No, absolutely not. Absolutely not."
That's not what Czekaj wants to hear. 

"I couldn't believe that it was happening to my house," he said. 

Czekaj said insurance will pay for new siding, but that's just a short-term solution.  He wants a long-term one and says he's priced out a fence, but that it would cost $3,000 he doesn't have.
If this is happening to you, see if your neighbor is willing to put up an awning or screen on that window.  Otherwise, you may need a fence or shrubs.