Even though today’s technology has given us a wide variety of options to side our homes with including many synthetic, wood look-a-likes, wood still remains a top favorite for many homeowners. Wood siding is a very durable choice that can retain its beauty for many, many years. Wood siding is available in a wide range of species each that are specific to a certain region with a few species being widely used nationwide.
Wood is a very common type of siding for homes, but there are a few important things to know before you decide on wood siding. First and foremost, it is important to know the type of wood siding that is readily available in your area. If you pick a wood siding that isn’t available in your area you could dramatically increase your price and decrease the availability of your wood siding. It is also important to know what types of animals and insects are common in your area, since different types of wood attract different animals and insects.
Regardless of the type of wood siding you choose, it is important to know how to properly maintain your wood siding for long term durability. Wood siding requires proper staining and sealing whenever you notice the paint fading or moisture beginning to set in. If moisture is left without being treated, you run the risk of rot and insect infestation in your siding.
Before you choose wood siding for your home, it is important to know the different species that are available as well as the differences between each type:
Wood Used for Clapboards
Pine – Pine is one of the most common wood species used for clapboards. A relatively cheaper wood species, pine is an affordable option for homeowners. The disadvantages of pine wood siding are its tendency for splitting and cupping. Pine is also not rot resistant, which means it requires quite a bit of maintenance including sealing it to keep it from rotting.
Spruce – Spruce is another common wood species used for clapboards. Used mostly in the East Coast, spruce is very similar to pine. Spruce is also not resistant to rotting, making it more difficult to maintain.
Fir – Fir is also used for clapboards and has similar characteristics as pine and spruce. Fir is a very affordable option for siding and is easy to install. Fir also maintains well, responding very well to a finish, making it easy to keep up through the years.
Higher Grade Species
Cedar – Cedar is used most commonly in shakes and shingles but is also used in clapboards. Unlike pine, cedar siding resists rot and is moisture and insect resistant. This rich siding option takes stain very well and is a gorgeous option for many homes. Cedar wood must be sealed and painted to keep the moisture out just like any other wood siding.
Redwood – Redwood is a richer siding that is perfect for any climate and is readily available in the West. A durable siding choice, redwood resists shrinking, is a natural insect repellant and has little warping or cupping. Redwood has the advantage of requiring less maintenance than other species because of its ability to retain the seal and finish.