Siding battle of the century: fiber cement vs. vinyl

Vinyl and fiber cement are two of the more popular siding materials. Each has its pros and cons. Your budget, climate, home's architectural style, and other relevant factors will help you determine which to choose.

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Fiber cement vs. vinyl siding: aesthetics

  • Styles: Both fiber cement and vinyl siding can be made with a smooth or wood-grain surface; fiber cement can also mimic stucco, while vinyl can look like logs.
  • Colors: Fiber cement can be ordered pre-finished with primer and a sealed topcoat, while vinyl has its color impregnated in the material. Vinyl has a color palette of 350 different colors, while fiber cement has a smaller number of color options available. However, fiber cement can be found in darker colors than vinyl, because it is less susceptible to heat and fading.
  • Appearance: Because it is a heavier material, fiber cement is more difficult to distinguish from wood. Vinyl siding is easier to identify.

Other considerations

Fiber cement is more costly than vinyl, both the material and installation costs. But it is less susceptible to temperature extremes and provides better insulation. Fiber cement has been in existence for nearly 100 years and can last 50 to 80 years. However, it requires repainting every 15-25 years. Vinyl is a newer technology, and manufacturers are continually making improvements in its durability, appearance and color.

In the end, it is up to you to make the call in the fiber cement vs. vinyl contest. You need to choose the material, style and color that best suits your home and your budget.




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