Wood & Cedar Siding - Pros & Cons

The first choice for most homeowners is wood in boards, shingles or shakes. These products are typically made from red or white cedar but they are also available in pine, spruce, redwood, cypress and Douglas fir. Solid wood is the standard and is unmatched for beauty and durability. In fact, if wood were just being discovered today, it would be heralded as a miracle product. It takes a wide variety of finishes well, offers some insulation value, is easy to repair and install, and is available prestained, primed or unfinished in many styles. Some products even come with fire-retarding treatments.


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Solid wood siding is arguably the best choice for the environment as well. It's a renewable resource that doesn't emit many pollutants during its manufacture. As you know, trees absorb carbon dioxide (CO2 is the primary cause of global warming) as they grow. And, solid wood is biodegradable provided it hasn't been treated with a preservative.

Solid wood siding, though its installed cost is competitive with most other siding products, must be painted or stained. This can add several thousand dollars to the cost of the job and to maintenance expenses in the future. Wood shingles, for example, will cost between $3 and $4 per square foot, before staining or painting. If solid wood isn't for you, there are other good siding choices.

Joe Provey, "How to change the skin — and appearance — on your home," Popular Mechanics.


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