A resident had used a cleaner on the vinyl siding of their detached garage (in an effort to remove ivy they had planted without prior authorization, no less), leaving the siding discolored and unsightly. While we are not in favor of painting vinyl siding, sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures. In addition to referring them to a vinyl siding installer we also provided our professional opinion regarding painting of vinyl siding.
Just in case you someday find yourself in a similar situation, here are the basics of painting vinyl siding: The surface must be clean to allow for proper adhesion; adjacent surfaces must be protected from overspray; 100% acrylic paint is recommended, e.g. Sherwin Williams SuperPaint or comparable; the siding should not be painted darker than the existing color, and the LRV of the paint should be 55 or greater; preferred application method is via airless spray for the most uniform finish, back rolling or back brushing is not necessary. Note: LRV stands for Light Reflective Value, with 0 being black and 100 being white. If vinyl siding is painted darker than existing or in an LRV below 55 it may overheat and warp.
The main benefit of painting vinyl siding is that it is less costly than replacement. Oftentimes replacement is not a viable option due to inability to find matching material or colors. The downside is that you’re creating a maintenance item where previously one did not exist. That said, it would be many a long time before it would need to be repainted, in my estimation in the range of 12-15 years. Also, as vinyl siding expands and contracts you may see some minor failure at joints due to this movement. Painting of vinyl siding is becoming a bit more common due to issues of fading. More often than not I see painting done by manufacturers as a means of resolving a warranty fade claim without incurring the cost of replacement.