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Hoping to get expert opinions...

We are planning to reside our home - large contemporary in the NE. So far we have been planning to use hardie plank for a simple, minimalist look. But as I've been researching the product, I don't love how the install procedures constantly change and how seemingly difficult it is to have issues covered under warranty (the price doesn't help either). I have been looking for an alternative but I haven't found one I'm comfortable with yet. I've seen some vinyl products that seem to have quite a few benefits but we don't love the plastic feel and we're worried about the resale on a >$1MM home. We don't love the maintenance on our current cedar siding and are hoping to find something that requires less maintenance in the future.

Thoughts? Alternative siding recommendations? Thanks!

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Vinyl = NOPE!

Aluminum = NOPE!

James Hardie product one of the best products out there for siding as long as the installer is certified and proficient in installing the product.

Same goes for almost anything being installed. If the company doing the installation is worth their salt the installation will meet the manufacturer's requirements.

Not a hard decision.

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Hardiboard. The stuff works.

The changing sets of standards are as much to address minutia relating to class action suits as much as anything. Understand, for any new product introduced into the construction industry, there are (at least) a hundred law firms waiting to trip up the manufacturer on some point or another. Warrantee issues are similar; install it correctly and warranties are superfluous....the stuff works.

Even the flashing issue was stretched AFAIC; set up correctly as a rain screen, the stuff doesn't even need flashing imho.

I am aware of a couple failures, but calling them failures is stretching it. More like hillbillies throwing siding at a house and hoping it sticks, and the resulting "failure" being translated as a problem with the material.

Get a good installer, Hardi works fine, lasts forever.

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What Nolan and Kurt said but be very careful that your installed is certified. Download the installation specs from James Hardi and use it to monitor the installation.

If your installer tucks tail and runs when he sees you watching, let him run then find someone else.

Doing it right is vital.

Marc

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You know, all the stuff about Hardi makes it sound like it's some kind of delicate operation and the installation requires an advanced degree.

It isn't that big a deal. I've seen the stuff slammed up and it still works fine. Not that I'm proposing slamming it up, but come on....it isn't that big a deal to install it correctly.

It's good stuff.

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Hardi.

1. Have an experienced carpenter install it - not siding contractors

2. The sheathing behind it has to be perfect or it will have unsightly bulges

3. Leave a clearance above roofs and above any horizontal surface

4. Paint the cuts before installing

5. Throw some bib flashings behind butt joints.

A large majority of the many problems I've found can be attributed to ignoring 1-3.

I kinda liked the stuff when it first came out and I don't like anything that doesn't have a proven record over 100 years. After Chad endorsed it here, I put it on a large addition to my home. Probably 10-11 years ago.

Like Chad, I put some unpainted panels laying on the ground and in my pond. It's just now beginning to show some delamination.

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Friend of mine had the sheet product with vertical B&B look installed. Looks good after ten yrs but the doofuses that installed it had trouble setting their air nailers to keep heads from breaking through, plus they did their practice nailing on the front.

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Like Chad, I put some unpainted panels laying on the ground and in my pond. It's just now beginning to show some delamination.

Tom Raymond and I saw a piece delaminate in less than 4 hrs, after is was left in a cup of water during a CE class.

Not far from here, an ant farm of thirty year cracker boxes are being built. I'm told there's a rep on the job site, all of the time. Why?

At one time, they used wood for siding. I heard if it's protected with quality paint, it can last a really long time.[;)]

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Old growth wood, sure. New tree farm stuff? I wouldn't bother.

Are you sure the class test material was Hardi? My experience is the same as Kibbel and Fabry. I still have some buried the back yard. Still fine.

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Old growth wood, sure. New tree farm stuff? I wouldn't bother.

Are you sure the class test material was Hardi? My experience is the same as Kibbel and Fabry. I still have some buried the back yard. Still fine.

We covered both of the big players. Mainly, Hardi. We were also given a handout of the latest changes in the manual, and a good part of the discussion was focused on awareness of the periodic changes.

To be fair, the instructor was not who put the product in the water. That was done by another inspector. Raymond, I'm sure, will fill in the blanks, or correct me.

I've seen it delaminated after it was installed too close to the ground on a pool house that was less than five years old. It was not in contact with the ground. There was a concrete sidewalk below it.

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I covered my house with Hardiplank in '92 and then I covered an addition with it in '05. The scraps on the ground from '92 are still in excellent condition; with a fresh coat of paint, they could pass for new. The scraps from '05 are falling apart, separating into thin layers, like the leaves of a book.

The stuff on the building is all fine.

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First question: "How long to you plan to live there" and "How old are you" (Kidding)

Seriously, the best siding in my opinion is high-grade cedar wood shingles.. properly installed and NOT PAINTED... So what if the sun makes it look many different ways from different angles.. if you treat it with a preservative every 5-7 years or so, it's gonna last the rest of the life of the house...

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Maybe yes, and very possibly no.

I continue to be amazed how many architects (in Chicago, anyway) continue to not know squat about the correct way to install siding, roofing, or a lot of other things, and more surprisingly, how many of them tell me they had absolutely no training or education in such things during their extremely rigorously schooling. Most of them are content in remaining ignorant. I don't know why.

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I am thinking aesthetics more than installation details. If the owner does select a fiber cement siding product the installation details are supplied by the manufacturer. Except for unique installs there is no need for an architect to detail the installation.

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Thank you so much, I feel so much more confident with selecting Hardie. I have multiple quotes, most are from certified installers, and my favorite so far has the Hardie rep come to each job to make sure the install is correct.

I have spoken with an architect about our house, and Hardie has the best combination of aesthetics, cost and performance (cedar shingles may give great performance but not the look we are going for). I am quite detailed about the minimalist look we are trying to achieve, so without upgrading to the thick Hardie so we can miter the corners we are doing all details for a very minimalist look. Additionally we are accenting the home with ipe or teak siding - entry way, some soffits and matching garage doors.

Thanks again!

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Plan sounds great, but I do wonder about ipe and teak sourcing and their connection with decimation of rain forests. There are sustainable exterior woods, such as "Lyptus", a brand of eucalyptus lumber that is farm produced in the Phillipines.

Re cedar siding see pic of a little detail I saw on an island house off the Maine coast.

Click to Enlarge
tn_2015729115737_DSCF0879_resize.jpg

54.53 KB

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What's the bleck? Barn panels look cool if integrated into the design.

If I could build anything I wanted, I'd probably build a foam box with steel siding and roof. I dig the Modernist ethic (as I chip away at my 100 year old house and apartment building.....).

I'm fortunate in having been able to experience working with premium old growth vertical grain material for most of my career. But, folks put it up until there hardly wasn't any left.

Nowadays, steel is cool.

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