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Fiber Cement Siding Vs. Vinyl

Posted on February 14, 2015.

vinyl and fiber cement siding

When it comes to the outside of your home, it pays to spend time choosing the right materials to cover it. After all, the exterior makes the first impression on neighbors and future buyers. The three most common types of facing are wood, vinyl and fiber cement siding.

While wood can be attractive, it requires a lot of maintenance and is laden with possible problems like termites and rot. It is also relatively expensive. Thus, many people turn to vinyl.

If you live in a moderate climate, vinyl can be an economical option. Be wary of cheap, thin products though. Itis plastic and can vary in thickness and quality. Thinner siding can lift away from a house during high winds, and it may crack in extreme weather. It can require some extra care, as well. It can trap moisture during wet months and begin to rot. The adage “you get what you pay for” certainly applies here.

Fiber cement siding is a mix of wood pulp and Portland cement. It is unique in that it combines the benefits of other building materials without any of the drawbacks. Like brick, it is immune to rot, fire and insect infestations. Unlike vinyl, it won’t rip off in the wind or warp in cold weather. And, it can look and feel like wood.

The manufactured fiber cement finish has become increasingly popular in recent years, and it is now used on 15 percent of new homes. It has even been approved in some historic districts, which are known for their demanding regulations.

The fiber cement siding is applied by overlapping horizontal boards, similar to the look of wooden slats. The pieces themselves have baked-on, UV resistant paints to keep the colors bright. It should also hold up against peeling, chipping and cracking.

While there are several types of siding available, fiber cement is gaining in popularity for its resilience, affordability and attractiveness. You can achieve a modern or historic look on your home with the unique material.