Trying to decide between fiber cement siding or vinyl siding for your exterior remodel can be challenging. Both materials have pros and cons and offer you a different aesthetic.
In many places across the country, vinyl is the most popular siding option. But in Louisville and the rest of Kentucky, James Hardie fiber cement siding is the best option.
Pros of Fiber Cement Siding
Fiber cement siding is our go-to for Kentucky homes.
Strong and Sustainable
Fiber cement siding is stronger and more rigid than vinyl options. When you install fiber cement boards, you can make an untrue wall straighter, and you know that the siding will not move or shift over time.
This strength comes from the combination of cement and cellulose fibers. When mixed, they create a new product that is exceptionally durable. It is also a more sustainable siding option.
Color and Design Options
There are so many design options when you choose fiber cement siding. For example, you can go with lapboards, shingles, vertical boards, trim, and a wide variety of colors and textures.
James Hardie siding is versatile enough to use in historical neighborhoods because it can accurately mimic wood siding. This is ideal for neighborhoods with strict building codes because you can emulate traditional wood siding without maintenance issues. For example, fiber cement siding can hold paint with a surface luster like wood.
James Hardie siding won’t rot or warp, requiring less maintenance. All you need to do is keep it clean with mild soap and prevent excess water damage by clearing your gutters and trimming nearby shrubbery.
You can choose siding with Color Plus technology, a pre-finished process that involves baking the color onto the siding. This means it won’t peel or fade.
Can Stand up To Harsh Weather
Fiber cement siding can withstand ice, snow, hail, drought, and rain. It is five times thicker than vinyl and is formulated with climate technology, making it more weather-resistant. It is also fire resistant and has a class A fire rating.
Cons of Fiber Cement Siding
Painted and Caulked
Fiber cement siding is a painted product; you will need to repaint it after 15 to 20 years. It is also not wholly moisture-resistant, and you must be aware of moisture collection points.
Higher Price Tag
Fiber cement siding is more expensive to manufacture and install.
Pros of Vinyl Siding
Vinyl is a popular siding choice in many parts of the country.
Solid Color Material
Vinyl siding is a solid color material, so you will never need to paint, scrape, or stain it. New vinyl technology even offers fade-resistant colors.
Cheaper to Install
Vinyl siding is cheaper than fiber cement siding to install.
Vinyl is efficient and doesn’t conduct heat or cold. It is a highly effective insulator when used in conjunction with the correct backing material.
Cons of Vinyl Siding
Harder to Repair Damage
If a section of your siding is damaged, you have to replace the entire panel rather than just a single board. Vinyl dents easily, so replacing damaged panels can become expensive. Vinyl also emulates the wall, so if it is off, you will notice it in your siding.
Gets Brittle Over Time
Vinyl tends to get brittle when exposed to harsh weather conditions, which can cause it to crack.
Fiber Cement Siding or Vinyl Siding: Which is Best for You?
Choosing the best siding option for your home is a personal decision. You will need to consider your budget, long-term home remodel goals and neighborhood.
At Kentucky Home Exteriors, we recommend James Hardie siding. Not only is it a quality product that comes with a great warranty, but it works well in our area.
If you are trying to decide between vinyl siding or fiber cement, contact us, and we can explain why James Hardie siding is the way to go.