Magazine article Sunset

Not Your Grandfather's Siding: Wood Look-Alikes Are Now More Attractive, Longer Lasting, and Easier to Maintain. (Home)

Magazine article Sunset

Not Your Grandfather's Siding: Wood Look-Alikes Are Now More Attractive, Longer Lasting, and Easier to Maintain. (Home)

Article excerpt

Manmade exterior siding, which nowadays surpasses wood for durability also has come a long way in mimicking the appearance and feel of wood. The flat, machine made-looking trim around the doors and windows on houses using vinyl or fiber cement siding used to be the it's-not-wood giveaway. But today manufacturers are turning out trim with a heavy grain and mitered corners for a realistic appearance and shadow line.

Selecting a vinyl or fiber cement siding used to mean a narrow choice of colors. Now the vinyl palette is enormous, and fiber cement colors are more varied than ever. Fiber cement can also be painted (though the paint must be maintained).

The information at right will help you decide what type of siding is best for your needs, taste, and budget (costs do not include installation, which varies with material). For more information on siding materials, visit the website of the NAHB Research Center, a division of the National Association of Home Builders (known for its independent testing of building materials) at www.toolbase.org or call (800) 898-2842.

RELATED ARTICLE: Today's siding operations, pros and cons

FIBER CEMENT Made from cement and wood fibers

COST: From $1.35 per square foot

* Very durable; little warping or buckling over time

* Doesn't break, dent, or scratch easily

* New colors and stains add to "real wood" appearance

* Maintenance is easy--wash it off

* Very fire resistant

* Harder to work with than others

* Installers must drill nail holes or use screws; cutting takes longer and can be challenging

COMPOSITE Made up of compressed wood chips

COST: From $1. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.