Matching Siding and Shingles on Your Site-Built Structures

Matching Siding and Shingles from the Modular Manufacturer

Recently, we built a large T-Cape with an oversized site-built garage and front porch.  As we usually do, we asked the modular manufacturer to ship matching siding and shingles for the garage and porch.  However, they suggested that we buy the materials locally because the weight of the long modules combined with the weight of the extra siding and shingles was more than they recommended.  We were fine with this because we knew that local vendors carried the same brand of siding and shingles.

Matching Siding and Shingles from the Local Vendor

Although we were able to buy the materials locally, we discovered after shingling half the garage that the shingle color didn’t match what was installed on the home.  It turned out that the modular manufacturer was buying shingles made in one of the factories owned by the shingle manufacture while our local suppliers were buying the “same” brand and color made in another of the their factories.  Unfortunately, the shingles from the two factories were noticeably different in color.

The colors of the siding and shingles on the garage match the colors of the materials on the home.
Matching the color of the siding and shingles on a garage with the home sometimes require you to purchase the materials from the modular manufacturer.

The situation became more complicated when we learned that there were no suppliers within 250 miles who carried shingles made from the same factory used by our modular manufacturer.  Fortunately, the shingle manufacturer helped us out by shipping matching shingles to one of the local suppliers.
To be fair, this problem is not typical.  Usually you can buy materials locally that match those installed by the modular manufacturer.  Even so, I recommend that you ask your dealer if he’s confident you can buy matching materials locally.

Matching Siding and Shingles for Two Years Later

There is one situation in which I more strongly recommend that you buy matching siding and shingles from the modular manufacturer.  That’s when you are delaying construction of a garage, porch, or other structure that will use these materials, and this delay is likely to be a couple of years.  Otherwise you might be unable to purchase matching materials because the manufacturer of the materials has discontinued making them.
On the other hand, it’s true that two years later your “matching” materials won’t exactly match those already installed on your home.  The sun’s ultraviolet light will have faded some of the color.  But at least you’ll have a closer match.
For more information about selecting matching modular materials, see Modular Home Specifications and Features and The General Contractor’s Responsibilities for Building a Modular Home in my book The Modular Home.