Hardie Board vs. Vinyl Siding – Which is Better?

Posted on March 31, 2023

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Hardie Board vs. Vinyl Siding – Which is Better?

As both types of siding are popular on the market for the benefits they offer, it can become tricky to decide which one to go with. However, you need not worry. This blog post, completely devoted to settling the dispute between Hardie Board vs. vinyl siding, will help you make the right decision for your home. 

Read the blog post till the end so that you learn everything you need to before making a decision that will last you for years to come. 

What Is Hardie Board Siding? 

If you search for home siding on Google and scroll through the pages, you’ll find Hardie Board siding on almost every page. But what makes this siding so renowned that most home exterior designers recommend it? The answer lies in its composition. 

Hardie Board siding, in contrast to vinyl and wood siding, is the most durable and long-lasting siding installed on the exterior of homes. Not only does it perfectly protect the exterior walls of a home or business, but it also insulates them to stop moisture exchange. 

Manufactured by blending Portland cement, sand, water, and cellulose fibers, Hardie Board siding makes the most durable and energy-efficient fiber cement siding option for homeowners looking for long-term protection. By enhancing a home’s curb appeal and increasing its resistance to impact from hail and other weather events, Hardie Board siding increases your property’s value. 

What Is Vinyl Siding? 

The second most renowned name on the siding market is vinyl siding. Vinyl siding is an affordable and easy-to-install option that can provide substantial protection against the elements for over 12 years. Made of high-quality PVC material, it effectively prevents water infiltration through the walls, providing an additional layer of protection for your home

Since it has a variety of styles and colors to offer, vinyl siding is the best option for homeowners looking to increase a home’s aesthetic appeal at a lower price. However, despite all these advantages, vinyl siding is prone to damage, deterioration, cracking, mold, buckling, and warping in response to high temperatures. 

The Pros And Cons Of Hardie Board Siding

Hardie Board siding has both advantages and disadvantages that homeowners should take into consideration before making a purchase decision.

Hardie Board
Hardie Board

Pros Of Hardie Board Siding:

1. Increased Aesthetic Appeal

One reason to consider Hardie Board siding for your home is its aesthetic appeal. Their siding comes in a variety of colors, styles and textures, making it easy to find a match for your building’s architecture. It also enhances a home’s appearance and overall integrity without compromising its curb appeal.

2. Durability And Longevity

Another reason to consider Hardie Board siding for your home or office is its durability. Made with a blend of Portland cement, sand, and cellulose fiber, Hardie Board siding is a durable option for any property. The time-tested siding has been popular with homeowners since the mid-1980s, and it can withstand all types of weather conditions, including strong storms, hail, snowfall, rain, and high winds. 

Additionally, Hardie Board siding lasts around 50 years or more and comes with a warranty to ensure your home stays protected.  

3. Practically Maintenance-Free 

Compared to many siding options, including vinyl siding and wood siding, Hardie Board siding is almost maintenance-free, helping you pay more attention to essential tasks. Since the siding is less prone to damage and buckling, it requires less maintenance, which means that there shouldn’t be a need for frequent repairs or replacements. Since this siding is also durable and strong enough to withstand impact, it can be cleaned easily with a power washer. 

Cons Of Hardie Board Siding:

Similar to many siding options, Hardie Board siding comes with disadvantages as well, including: 

1. Cost Of Installation

As the Hardie Board siding we’re talking about is fiber cement siding, it’s important to consider the weight of this material. Heavier material may mean structural reinforcements need to be added to your home, or that it will take longer to install, leading to higher installation costs. Installing fiber cement siding also takes a specialized technique which can be hard to come across, and more expensive to pay for when found. 

2. The Number Of Contactors

The benefits of Hardie Board siding become irrelevant if there are no contractors locally available to install it. Unfortunately, the limited number of contractors who specialize in Hardie Board siding can be a significant disadvantage that discourages people from using it. This also factors into the cost of installation.

The Advantages And Drawbacks Of Vinyl Siding

Like many types of siding, vinyl siding has many advantages and disadvantages at the same time. Some of vinyl siding’s pros and cons are as follows: 

Vinyl Siding
Vinyl Siding

Advantages Of Vinyl Siding:

1. Variety Of Styles And Colors

It’s no surprise that vinyl siding is a popular choice across the United States due to its extensive variety of color and style options. There is a vast selection of colors and styles to choose from, making it easier for homeowners and businesses to find something that will fit their desired look. 

2. Vinyl Siding Is Available Almost Everywhere

The major disadvantage of Hardie Board siding, and the major advantage of vinyl siding, is its availability. Vinyl siding is available almost everywhere, beating out Hardie Board siding in this category. 

3. Affordable Price

Another reason for its popularity is the cost of its affordability. Vinyl siding provides significant protection against impact and water infiltration at a reasonable price. Found at an affordable price while being able to withstand different weather conditions, vinyl siding can accompany homeowners for around 20 to 40 years. 

Drawbacks Of Vinyl Siding:

1. Prone To Punctures And Cracks 

The unavoidable disadvantage of vinyl siding is that it is prone to punctures and cracks in response to forceful impact and hailstorms. Due to its thickness and reduced protection against debris and weather damage, it easily cracks, allowing water to penetrate through. 

2. Its Colors Fade With Time

In response to UV radiation, high temperatures, humidity, and environmental factors, vinyl siding loses its colors over time, which reduces the level of curb appeal a home has. Painting vinyl siding isn’t recommended either, as it can be tricky to find the right shade that won’t cause overheating, and painted vinyl easily peels and cracks, leaving the appearance of your home worse than if you left it.  

3. Frequently Traps Moisture Under Its Surface

Vinyl siding cracks and warps easier than other materials, leaving moisture to become trapped between the siding and the house. This may lead to mold growth and other moisture-related issues. 

Comparison Of Hardie Board And Vinyl Siding

The following section effectively demonstrates the differences between Hardie Board siding and vinyl siding. 

• Appearance and Style

Hardie Board and vinyl siding are two popular options for exterior siding. When it comes to appearance and style, Hardie Board has a more natural, wood-like appearance, while vinyl siding offers a smooth and uniform appearance. 

Hardie Board is also available in a wider range of textures, including smooth, stucco, and wood-grain textures, while vinyl siding typically only comes in smooth and wood-grain textures. In terms of color options, both Hardie Board and vinyl siding offer a wide range of colors to choose from, but Hardie Board tends to offer more vibrant and unique color options.

• Durability

When it comes to durability, both Hardie Board and vinyl siding are known for their longevity. However, Hardie Board is generally considered to be more durable and longer lasting than vinyl siding. 

Hardie Board is a blend of cement and wood fibers that makes it resistant to weather, insects, and fire damage. Vinyl siding, on the other hand, is made from plastic, which can become brittle over time and may crack or warp in extreme temperatures. 

Hardie Board is resistant to damage from high winds, hailstorms, and extreme temperatures, making it a popular choice for homes in areas with harsh weather conditions. While vinyl siding is more susceptible to damage from extreme temperatures or hailstorms. 

• The Cost Of Installation

When it comes to cost, vinyl siding is generally less expensive as compared to Hardie Board. This is because vinyl siding is made from PVC, which is much lighter and easier to handle than the combination of cement and wood fibers that make up Hardie Board’s siding. 

Despite the higher upfront cost of Hardie Board siding, and its installation cost, the benefits of Hardie Board siding, such as its durability, make up for its upfront expense. 

• Fire Resistance

While Hardie Board and vinyl siding are engineered to withstand fires, Hardie Board is generally regarded as more fire-resistant. This is because it is constructed from non-combustible materials such as cement and wood fibers, which don’t combust, burn, or melt. 

Moreover, Hardie Board comes with fire-resistant coatings and is suitable for use in fire-prone areas like wildfire zones. On the other hand, vinyl siding, though designed to be fire-resistant and won’t catch fire, will melt or warp when exposed to high temperatures. In summary, both siding options offer some degree of protection against fire, but Hardie Board is the preferred choice in terms of fire resistance. 

• Sustainability And Value 

Regarding sustainability and value, Hardie Board is often seen as the superior choice in comparison to vinyl siding. Hardie Board is manufactured using natural and renewable materials, which can be obtained sustainably. As a result, homeowners can save money in the long run while reducing the waste generated from discarded materials. 

In contrast, vinyl siding is typically made from non-renewable materials like PVC plastic, which can be detrimental to the environment and challenging to dispose of. Overall, for homeowners who prioritize eco-friendliness, durability, and cost-effectiveness, Hardie Board represents a more sustainable and valuable option compared to vinyl siding.

• Maintenance

Hardie Board requires less maintenance than vinyl siding due to its durability and resistance to damage. Additionally, the Hardie Board is designed to resist moisture, rot, insects, and other common threats to siding, reducing its chances of rotting, and the need for frequent repairs. 

In contrast, vinyl siding can crack, fade, warp, and become discolored over time, requiring frequent repairs and replacement. To maintain vinyl siding, homeowners may need to clean it more frequently with specific cleaning solutions. 

Which One Should You Choose? 

Choosing between Hardie Board’s fiber cement siding and vinyl siding depends on your specific needs and priorities. If you value durability, longevity, fire resistance, and low maintenance, then, indeed, you should choose Hardie Board siding. On top of that, if you prefer to increase your property’s value, Hardie Board siding can help you achieve that. 

However, if your preference is versatility and affordability, vinyl siding is a good choice and will do a relatively decent job of protecting your home. 

Overall, we recommend you research each type yourself, as well as the other siding options out there, and choose the most durable and long-lasting siding for your home. 

Do You Want To Install A Suitable Siding On Your Home? 

Now that you are familiar with both types of siding, you may have a better idea of which one is the best for your home. If you need to install fiber cement or vinyl siding in New Jersey we can help!

Contact Northkit Roofing today at (973) 396-7416 for further information. Our expert team will help you install any type of siding you want on your home or business. 

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