You probably know that when you’re looking at installing siding on your home, there are a lot of different things you will need to look into which takes into account your budget and personal preferences. For example, if you prefer an option that does not need a lot of maintenance, you might want to avoid wood siding. However, wood and fiber cement are not the only options, and you can also consider wood, stone, stucco and more.
This article, however, will focus on fiber cement and getting the help from fiber cement contractors near you.
Fiber cement has a lot of advantages that the other materials have too, and not too many disadvantages. The mixture of wood pulp and Portland cement creates a very viable siding option for you to consider if you haven’t already decided that it’s the one you’ll go with.
It’s not only durable but also requires minimal maintenance, which is a feature that is desired by a lot of homeowners. It’s also a great type of siding that is both termite and fire proof, which means you won’t need to be looking out for potential pests making it their home.
While not being the same as wood, stones or bricks, it can be made to look like it, which is what so many people appreciate. Getting the wooden look without the need to maintain it the same way is a dream come true, and that is the reason that it has managed to become one of the more popular types of home siding. Besides being able to look like other types of siding, it comes with a very favorable price tag too.
Although not being one of the oldest types of siding material, it has steadily been gaining popularity because of its many appealing features. If you want aesthetics while not spending too much on the project, fiber cement is truly one of the options for you to consider, and there are even historic districts that will allow this type of siding, even if the material itself wasn’t around 30 years ago.
All about Fiber Cement Siding
Although the maintenance of this type of siding is limited, it will however need to be either painted or stained, which is traditionally done before it is even installed as this makes it a lot easier. It will either be done by the manufacturer themselves or it could be a paint shop providing the work. Depending on the amount of coats of paints, it’s not uncommon for fiber cement to come with a 15 or 25 year warranty.
If you already have it installed on your home and it’s starting to show signs of aging, it’s a good idea to contact house painters and have them give it an additional coat of paint which will also act as a protective layer.
The trim that is installed on the side of your home should also be made of a material that can withstand the harsher outside climates, and if maintenance is not your preferred activity, we recommend you look in to getting it in the same material as the siding, or otherwise PVC.
The Ingredient in Fiber Cement
The things that go into fiber cement are pretty basic, although the different manufacturers may choose to tweak it slightly as per their preferences. The main ingredients, however, are very much the same.
- Portland cement – Consisting of iron, limestone and clay it helps bind all the remaining ingredients together.
- Water – dissolving the wood pulp and activating the cement are the most important tasks of the water. Activating the cement is also what will cause it to harden.
- Fly ash – the purpose of this material is to act as a filler, although there are also other types of material that may be used for this. One of them being silica sand.
- Wood pulp – much of the resilience and the many great features of fiber cement actually comes from this material that’s being added.
Installing This Type of Material
Depending on what kind of layout you will go with, the material will be installed in different manners. For panels, they will be installed right up against each other, whereas shingles and clapboards will be installed with some overlap, which will resemble the way that wooden shingles would be installed.
As you can imagine, if there’s more overlap on the siding boards, you will also need more of the material, meaning that the layout you choose to go with and the type will determine the amount of material needed. More overlap simply increases your material costs but can also be done to ensure that no water makes it in behind the siding. To accurately make sure you get the right amount of material siding contractors will be needed as they’re the ones experienced in installing this. The width of the boards also affects the amount of siding needed when you have overlap on the boards.
Caulk helps in making sure that everything is water-proof and when you start seeing it failing, you should make sure to get it recaulked to keep the protective measures it provides.
When it comes to the recommendations that the contractors come with with regards to how high up the siding should go in order to provide a protective layer, it’s good to follow their recommendations as they’re done in order to make sure that there’s enough material to protect your home against water. This includes where the siding and roofing meet, or you might soon find yourself with water leaks. However, it’s not just the roof, it’s also with the deck and more.
Standing the Test of Time Again the Elements
There are many different reasons to choose this type of siding in all the different parts of the country. For example, in the northern part where vinyl is also very popular fiber cement has the advantage that it is better at withstanding the freeze-thaw cycles than fiber cement which means it doesn’t crack the same way.
In the south where termites and fungi are a bigger problem because of the temperatures and other conditions, fiber cement’s a better option because these pests won’t be drawn to fiber cement.
The coasts are characterized by having a lot humidity and salt in the air. The same way these cause potential problems for your car, they can also be a challenge for the siding material. However, fiber cement is very good at withstanding all the different factors of the coast and if installed properly is able to withstand very harsh winds too.
The western parts of the US are notably known for having more wildfires, and this obviously has an impact on insurance prices too. Fiber cement equipped homes can sometimes get discounts in their insurance because this material is noncombustible. Although you will need to check with your specific insurance company to see if it’s the case or not.
Calculating the Amount of Material Needed
We very much recommend that you let the contractor determine the needed amount of material to make sure it’s accurate. It’s not too hard to calculate when it’s simply panels that need to be installed since they’re installed right up against each other with no overlap, where you simply need to calculate the square footage of the surfaces requiring the installation, which is simple multiplication.
When you start having overlap, that’s when the calculation gets a lot more difficult and why you will need to have it done by fiber cement siding installers so it’s done accurately. The calculation will include the width of the boards as well as the amount of overlap that will be needed.
There are different manufacturers when it comes to fiber cement that include Allura Plycem (which used to be known as CertainTeed), Nichiha, MaxiTile, James Hardie and GAF. Your contractor will likely have recommendations in terms of which one to go with depending on the area that you live in.
The cost of having fiber cement siding installed is very reasonable. It provides great protection against the elements and your contractor may often be able to get better prices for the products than you can, which is why they will often recommend that they buy the material.
The next step for you is to get quotes from competing contractors. This used to be harder than it is now. All you have to do is to head to the top of this page and fill out the form with the information for your project and you will have up to 4 contractors reach out to you. We’ll match you with the most relevant contractors in your area that can help install fiber cement siding.
It’s easy to fill out the form, only takes 2 minutes and will give you competing quotes from contractors. It’s free and there’s no obligation when you go ahead. What are you waiting for?