Whether you are replacing your siding or choosing siding for new construction, you are probably looking for a choice that gives you the right balance between affordability, visual appeal, durability and ease-of-maintenance. You may like the low cost of vinyl siding, but you may be unhappy with its appearance and durability. You may find stone aesthetically pleasing, but find the costs involved to be more than your budget will bear. You may have considered wood, but you are reluctant to invest in a high-maintenance option. Fortunately, there is a “wonder siding” available that is affordable, durable, easy to maintain and beautiful: fiber cement.
Wood Siding & Fiber Cement – Wonder Siding!
What Is Fiber Cement Siding?
Fiber cement siding is a relatively new product that was introduced in the United States during the 1990s. Typically, it is manufactured with fly ash or silica sand, cement, wood pulp and water. It is extremely fire-resistant, which may result in savings on your homeowners insurance. Properly installed, it can withstand wind speeds of as much as 130 mph. It is insect- and rot-resistant, is unaffected by UV radiation, will not crack from the freeze/thaw cycle and will not be affected by high humidity levels.
Fiber cement siding is available in a variety of textures and styles. For example, you can find products that have the appearance of wood, brick or stone. You can choose board-and-batten, clapboard, shakes or even clamshell shingles. You can purchase fiber cement siding that has a factory-applied finish or paint the siding in whatever color you prefer. The different styles and color choices make it easy to mix-or-match your siding to create a truly unique exterior.
How Does Fiber Cement Compare to Other Types of Siding?
Comparing fiber cement siding to the other types is something of an unfair competition.
• Cost: Fiber cement siding costs an average of approximately $1.70 per square foot. Wood siding averages roughly $4.70 per square foot for clapboards and $7.50 for shingles. Stone will set you back roughly $9.50 per square foot. The cheapest option is vinyl, which averages approximately $0.75 per square foot. Aluminum siding costs around $3 per square foot.
• Maintenance: Fiber cement siding is virtually maintenance-free. You might want to spray it with your water hose occasionally and check the caulking every few years. Wood siding requires significant maintenance; it must be kept sealed, painted or stained to prevent rot. Aluminum and vinyl are not high-maintenance, but they have issues with durability.
• Warranty: Manufacturers of fiber cement siding offer warranties of at least 25 years on manufacturing defects, and factory finishes are typically covered against fading and flaking for 15 years. Vinyl siding usually has a prorated warranty that provides full coverage for only the first five years, dropping to 50 percent after 10 years and 10 percent after 14 years. The warranty on wood siding can be as short as one year. As you can tell from their warranties, manufacturers expect that your fiber cement siding could conceivably last a lifetime, while the manufacturers of vinyl and wood siding are a bit more pessimistic.
• Appearance: Fiber cement siding does a far better job of replicating the appearance of wood, brick or stone than vinyl or aluminum siding. It also has a greater ability to create three-dimensional interest.
• Durability: Fiber cement siding can withstand impacts far better than vinyl, wood or aluminum siding. Hail can knock holes in vinyl siding, crack wood and dent aluminum siding, and repairing the damage can be costly and difficult.
When all factors are considered, fiber cement siding clearly is the winner. Alpha Roofing is a top-rated roof contractor in Austin, TX offering an extensive range of services, including siding installation, commercial and residential roof replacements, gutter installation and roof repairs. We are known for our professionalism, dependability, integrity and craftsmanship. If you would like to receive a free quote, you can call (512) 777-1086 or use the handy online form.
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