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Exterior Siding Options

Exterior Siding Options By Miriam Kasdan
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Many materials are available to the homeowner who wants exterior siding, to replace old siding or a fading paint job. Here's a brief description of each:
  • Stone. Although quite expensive, nothing holds up as well as stone, which includes granite, limestone, and slate.
  • Brick. Made of fired clay, brick comes in a variety of earthy colors, and can last for centuries. It's also expensive.
  • Cedar Shingles. Homes using these wooden shingles, also called "shakes," blend well with wooded landscapes. Made of natural cedar, these shingles come in earth-friendly tones such as browns and grays.
  • Wood Clapboard. With regular maintenance, this real-wood siding can last longer than its synthetic counterpart.
  • Fiber Cement. This type of siding can be made to look like wood, stucco, or masonry. It's durable and natural-looking, is less costly than real wood, and is also fireproof and termite-proof.
  • Stucco. Made of cement combined with water and materials such as sand and lime, stucco has been used as a building material since the days of Renaissance Italy. Real stucco is more durable than synthetic stucco.
  • Engineered Wood. Composite wood is made of real wood and other products; hardboard is one example. This type of wood comes in panels and is easy to install.
  • Seamless Steel. Steel siding is very strong, and resists shrinking and bulging in changing temperatures. It can be purchased in a wood-like texture, or in corrugated steel for a modern house.
  • Aluminum. Considered old-fashioned, aluminum siding is still offered by builders as an alternative to vinyl. It may crack and fade, but won't dent the way vinyl will.
  • Vinyl. Made of a PVC (polyvinyl chloride) plastic, vinyl is less expensive than other siding products, but also may be harmful to the environment in the event of fire.

About the Author
Miriam Kasdan has been writing and editing marketing and technical materials for almost 20 years and specializes in home improvement features. Miriam earned a B.A. in Sociology from the University of California at Berkeley.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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