Engineered Wood Siding for Your Richmond Home
Regardless of what it is called, engineered wood siding materials have a bit of an edge over the real wood siding options that are available. It is these products that have been engineered in a way that helps to eliminate flaws, while being resistant to deterioration, and a cost-effective option to maintain and install.
Engineered wood siding is designed using wood strands that are coated using a resin binder and then compressed to make a board that has a very high level of strength. The boards are typically treated with zinc borate to protect them against rot and termites, as well. Manufacturers claim these treatments are safe for humans, pets, and the environment.
The composite core can be cut into a number of shapes including shakes, planks, panels, and trim. Then a top layer of an overlay product is placed on the boards and then they are saturated with resin that is applied using an industrial glue to create a moisture barrier. At this point, it can be made smooth or embossed to give it a wood grain look and feel.
You will also see engineered wood referred to as engineered siding, manufactured wood, composite wood, and synthetic wood.
When you choose engineered wood siding, you have a more affordable material that offers a fast and easy installation process. It is also lighter in how much it weighs and has advanced features that make the installation of the material much easier. You can purchase engineered wood siding pre-primed, pre-finished, or ready to paint and it is offered in many colors, shades, and finishes. This helps to reduce the amount of labor and field time needed once the siding is in place.
This siding is becoming more and more popular because of its enhanced durability, strength, and the fact that it is more affordable than most of the other options. This will be discussed more below.
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There are a number of notable advantages to engineered wood.
First, it costs less than natural wood siding. It can be purchased for about $1.25 to $2.25 per square foot for panels or lap siding, and $2.30 to about $3.50 for shake style pieces. This tends to run around 20 to 50% below the cost of natural wood, which is substantial.
Other types of siding can be made to look like natural wood, but engineered wood will look much more like the real thing.
It is mostly made from recycled wood or wood waste products, so it is considered to be a green product.
It can handle extreme temperature changes without deteriorating or warping due to the treatments applied during manufacture.
It is far more resistant to mold, mildew, and insects than real wood.
It is surprisingly impact resistant, far more than fiber cement, aluminum, and vinyl.
It can be cut just like natural wood without the need for specialized tools.
The warranties, usually up to 30 years, are transferable, adding value to the product.
There are really very few cons related to this but we will look at a few.
Some of the binders that make it solid are not considered to be eco-friendly.
Some of the earlier attempts to manufacture these resulted in inferior quality boards that rotted prematurely. There were even a couple class action lawsuits directed at the manufacturer. But these problems have been corrected. And now the products even come with good warranties, adding confidence.
Engineered wood looks a lot like its natural counterpart, but not exactly like it. Some might find the engineered wood to look a bit too perfect, lacking the natural flaws and variation in real wood.
This is a relatively new product by siding standards, and with any new product come risks. But the manufacturers now stand behind their products with very good warranties, so this should mitigate the risk.