Fiber cement is Fiber cement, right? So what is the difference from one brand to another? Well, Certainteed Weatherboard and James Hardie fiber cement siding have some things in common. Both are very durable, rot proof, fire rated and impervious to wood boring insects. They are priced about the same and both come in an array of shapes, pre-finished colors and textures. They are manufactured by reputable companies who have been around for a long time. Now here’s where they differ:
- Warranty: James Hardie offers a 30 year limited warranty on their primed lap siding. Certainteed offers a 50 year limited transferrable warranty.
- Appearance: CertainTeed, in my opinion, does the best job in the industry of duplicating the look of real wood. The pattern is a deeper, more authentic wood-grain pattern than James Hardie. You will find far fewer boards with duplicated wood grain patterns with Certainteed than with James Hardie.
- Pre Finished Stained siding: CertainTeed offers pre-finished stained siding available in 6 Premium colors. “Get the beauty of stained Cedar without the drawbacks of wood.”
- Environmental Friendliness: Certainteed is committed to “Green Building”. Certainteed uses 30% recycled fly ash as a binder in their boards. Fly ash is a material that would otherwise be disposed of in landfills. They also manufacture using recycled water, recycle their waste verses filling landfills, and are recognized by ENERGY STAR for achievements towards reducing greenhouse emissions through energy efficiency.
- Health Factors: James Hardie siding is largely composed of silica. When cut a fine dust containing this silica is released into the air. Breathing silica dust can cause silicosis, a disease affecting the lungs and respiratory system.
- Durability: Certainteed better resists the effects of heavy rain, high humidity and extreme cold temperatures. It has a 60% higher interlaminate bond strength compared to James Hardie meaning it will not delaminate. This feature is guaranteed in Certainteed’s warranty.
- Impact Resistance: Certainteed siding has been proven to be less likely to fracture upon impact than James Hardie siding.
- Primer Finish: Certainteed uses FiberTect sealant which actually penetrates into the boards and bonds with the fiber cement material, protecting the siding from unwanted moister. The FiberTect also bonds better with paint giving you a longer lasting finish. You can wait up to 2 years before painting new CertainTeed siding versus 6 months with James Hardie.
- Over 100 years of building products leadership: CertainTeed is one of the nation’s largest and most respected building products manufactures.
Fiber Cement siding is an excellent investment for your home regardless of the brand you choose.