Curb Appeal4 min

What is Siding?

Siding definition, types, considerations and more

Siding is a protective material attached to the exterior of a house or other similar structure, such as a multifamily dwelling. On a house, siding is what helps defend the exterior against weather, impacts and other intrusive elements, such as insects. It also adds curb appeal and can help homeowners express their personal home style through the many materials, textures and colors of varying types of siding.

Learn more about siding’s meaning, discover different types of siding, see which siding is most durable, and learn how siding adds value to a home.

What Is the Purpose of Siding on a House?

Siding is intended to provide an initial line of defense against most exterior elements that might threaten a structure. For example, siding can help resist damage from insects like termites. It can also provide protection against weather issues-such as hail, wind, moisture, and even extreme heat and cold temperatures.

A quality, durable siding also helps offer defense against impacts. Beyond protection, siding enhances the home's exterior aesthetic with style elements such as color and texture.

What Is Siding Made of?

Siding can be made from many different materials. The most common types of siding each have their benefits and drawbacks, which is why learning about the materials and types of siding available is a great first step in deciding what kind of siding is best for you.

Engineered Wood Siding:

Engineered wood strand technology allows this type of siding to maintain the classic, traditional look of wood with added elements that can help it withstand weather, resist termite damage and more. When installed to specifications, LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding, for example, can help withstand wind gusts up to 200 miles per hour and can resist impact damage better than its competitors (check out these LP SmartSide durability videos for proof!). It’s also treated with the LP® SmartGuard® Process, in which resins and waxes are mixed with wood strands to add core strength during the manufacturing process. These treatments, along with the addition of zinc borate, also help resist moisture, fungal decay and termites. On top of its engineered core, LP SmartSide Trim & Siding also comes in a variety of textures, and LP® SmartSide® ExpertFinish® Trim & Siding comes in a variety of versatile colors so that homeowners can get the look they want for their homes.

Fiber Cement Siding:

Made from sand, cement and cellulose fibers, fiber cement siding can offer many different styles to fit almost any homeowner's needs. However, it can also become brittle and crack in colder temperatures and may be more prone to damage on the jobsite.

Vinyl Siding:

Vinyl siding is made primarily from polyvinyl chloride, and it generally represents a cost-effective siding option. However, design choices may be limited and it can be prone to breakage and damage in extreme weather. Hail damage on vinyl siding is common, as well as warping from high temperatures and sunlight-all of which can be tricky to repair.

Aluminum Siding:

While aluminum siding may be a win in the cost category, it is prone to dents and dings and does not provide the energy efficiency many homeowners look for. It can get very hot during warmer months, putting extra strain on HVAC systems, so it may not be the best siding for hot climates.

Plastic Siding:

Also known as polymer siding, plastic siding is made from a slightly different plastic material than vinyl siding but offers the same pros and cons.

Types & Styles of Siding

What Is Board and Batten Siding?

Board and batten style siding, also known as "barn siding," is a siding style that was once typically used for outbuildings like barns and sheds. But now this type of siding is surging back into popularity, largely due to the modern farmhouse trend. It involves panel or vertical siding with thin strips-or battens-placed over vertical seams. This creates a clean look that provides interest and curb appeal. It can be used for a whole home or for accent areas. When you use LP SmartSide Trim & Siding to create this look, it'll provide the same superior durability as lap siding.

What Is Lap Siding?

Lap siding is likely what you imagine when you think of siding-thin, horizontal strips of a siding material layered over one another. It may be what is most commonly seen on a home, but it offers maximum flexibility when it comes to style (cedar texture or smooth finish) and color. ExpertFinish lap siding is available in a variety of timeless colors, or LP SmartSide lap siding comes primed so you can paint it any color. Engineered wood lap siding is a great fit for many climates, offering a durable, stylish appearance to almost any home.

What Is Cedar Texture Shakes Siding?

If you're looking for ways to bring interest and variety to your home's façade, cedar texture shakes siding could be the way to go. Often used for areas such as gables on the home, cedar texture shakes siding has shiplap ends for installation guidance and can be installed with staggered or straight edge exposed. LP SmartSide Cedar Texture Shakes Siding remains just as durable as the rest of the LP SmartSide siding collection while helping you create an interesting and cohesive look for your home.

Does Siding Add Value to Your Home?

If you're wondering whether siding is good for your home's curb appeal or resale value, the answer is a resounding yes. Besides giving a home its unique look and feel, siding helps maintain a home's structural integrity. Siding, especially engineered wood siding, adds value in many climates over other materials, such as stucco. For example, stucco can be prone to cracking in cold climates, but engineered wood siding resists freeze/thaw cycles.

Because siding is so critical, it's important to choose a material that is proven to perform in even the toughest conditions. LP SmartSide Trim & Siding is one of the most durable siding solutions on the market, and it can help you achieve the look you want for your home without sacrificing the durability you need. When you're weighing house siding options and cost, think beyond the basics and try engineered wood siding, such as LP SmartSide siding, which gives you the beauty and strength your home needs.

Discover the many colors, textures and styles of LP SmartSide siding today.

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