When you’re in need of new siding and faced with the decision of which material to choose, two popular options are bound to emerge: gorgeous cedar wood siding and durable Hardie Board siding. While both have a variety of different benefits, taking the time to learn the facts about each will help you make an informed decision about what will work best for your long-term needs.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of these two popular siding materials:
Hardie Board vs. Cedar Siding
- Hardie Board—This durable siding is made of cement, sand, and cellulose fibers and engineered to stand up to even the harshest of weather elements.
- Cedar Siding—This natural wood siding is made from red cedar or white cedar trees, and is one of the most durable natural wood products. It is made into beautiful shingles or shakes.
- Hardie Board—Because of its strong makeup, James Hardie Siding resists weather damage and safeguards your home from moisture intrusion, ensuring trustworthy protection for your home for its lifetime. Hardie siding provides more protection than wood from freezing weather and hot, humid conditions. James Hardie siding lasts up to 50 years when installed correctly and well-maintained. And the manufacturer stands behind their product with an outstanding 30-year warranty.
- Cedar Siding—While cedar siding looks fabulous, unfortunately, it may crack, split, and deteriorate over the years, making your home vulnerable to moisture intrusion and costly damage. Additionally, over time, pests are attracted to cedar wood siding. When sealed properly and maintained as needed, cedar can last decades.
Beauty and Style
- Hardie Board—This siding is designed to mimic the look of cedar shakes (HardieShingle) without the high maintenance wood requires. It resembles wood so closely that it has been approved for use in the restoration of historic properties. It also comes in vertical panels (HardiePanel) or horizontal panels (HardiePlank). You can also achieve the board-and-batten look by beginning with vertical HardiePlank (boards) and adding HardieTrim (battens). And this siding comes in a smooth modern finish or a rustic look.
- Cedar Siding—Cedar siding is unquestionably beautiful. The warm color and spicy scent create an appealing siding option. The wood grain can be seen and enjoyed as it is or treated, allowing you to create a rustic or modern look.
- Hardie Board—Hardie’s ColorPlus® technology delivers factory baked-on color that resists fading from UV rays, and comes with a 15-year warranty. The designer-picked color combinations make choosing your home’s color simple.
- Cedar Siding—Wood siding can be either painted or stained to achieve the look you desire. The challenging part about cedar siding is its need for regular painting or staining.
- Hardie Board—Known for its low maintenance, James Hardie fiber cement siding simply needs to be washed twice a year with a garden hose and a medium bristle nylon brush.
- Cedar Siding—Tedious maintenance is needed for cedar siding to maintain its beauty. It needs to be painted or re-stained every 3-5 years, and regularly checked for wood rot and pest infestation due to its makeup. Any needed repairs should be done promptly to prevent more costly problems.
- Hardie Board—Fiber cement siding is non-combustible so it won’t contribute to a fire. And the fire resistance is built into James Hardie Siding—without any added chemical treatments. Due to its non-combustible nature, insurance companies offer discounts to homeowners who choose this protective siding material.
- Cedar Siding—Wood siding can fuel a fire, so it is typically treated with a fire retardant. Once it is treated, it is no longer safe for the landfill. Check your city ordinances, because some cities and HOAs ban the use of cedar because of the fire hazard.
- Hardie Board—Hardie siding is resistant to woodpeckers, termites, carpenter ants, and more. You can rest at ease that your home is well protected from these damaging invaders.
- Cedar Siding—Cedar is used to preserve clothing because termites, carpenter ants, and mice are not attracted to it, so they won’t be interested in cedar shingles either—initially. Over the years, wood loses its tannin (which is what keeps pests away in the early years of its lifespan), causing it to become less pest-resistant.
- Hardie Board—Engineered for the climate you live in, fiber cement is naturally moisture resistant. The cement and sand in fiber cement siding make it stand up to rain, hail, and snow.
- Cedar Siding—Cedar is rot-resistant but not rot-proof. Dirt, debris, and moisture can build up on cedar shakes and in their creases. This can cause the wood to weaken and lead to rot. It’s vital that cedar shakes are kept clean and sealed to prevent this problem.
- Hardie Board—This reliable siding material is more affordable than cedar siding. Its installation is done by a team of professionals due to the weight of Hardie planks. Fiber cement delivers an outstanding return on investment, and low maintenance, giving homeowners confidence in choosing this siding material.
- Cedar Siding—Wood siding is priced beginning at $5 per square foot (higher than fiber cement) and its installation is more streamlined than James Hardie. Its tedious maintenance and susceptibility to moisture intrusion should be considered before choosing it as your siding material.
Upgrade Your Home with America’s Top Siding
Porter Family Exteriors ensures your Hardie siding is installed with precision and according to the manufacturer’s guidelines so it delivers the high performance you deserve. As a James Hardie Elite Preferred contractor, you can trust us to install your siding the right way the first time.
Learn more about our James Hardie installation services.