Siding Options

No two homeowners are alike. Even in cookie-cutter neighborhoods, homeowners are looking for a unique look that will make their home stand out.

“With baby boomers starting to retire we’re seeing more and more that maintenance level is an issue,” says Phyllis Vail, director of marketing communications for CertainTeed. “Looking at the whole aging in place trend, people want something easy to care for and a virtually no maintenance product is a consideration in their choice. The green phenomenon and the sustainability of a product is also being asked about more and more by consumers. To what extent they’ll pay more for it, we don’t really know.”

What follows is a list of siding options for today’s home and some of the companies that offer these options.


Today’s vinyl has seen a lot of improvements. There has been an evolution from steel to aluminum to vinyl, which really started to hit its stride in the 80s and 90s is probably at its height right now. Within vinyl, other things have developed, such as polymer shakes, which are molded instead of extruded.

Alcoa Home Exteriors pairs its most advanced insulated product line, Structure, with is virtually unlimited color palette, DreamColor. With Structure in DreamColor, a home will have a freshly painted look for years with the added benefits of noise reduction, water resistance and energy savings. In addition to the 700 baseline colors, Alcoa offers a custom color matching system.

The Foundry’s vinyl shakes, shingles and shapes offer homeowners the authentic appearance of richly-textured cedar siding with the benefits of low maintenance. These products do not split, bow or rot and have a limited lifetime warranty.

Fiber Cement

Fiber cement is a composite material made of sand, cement and wood fibers. Often taking the appearance of wood siding or shingles, it is slow to burn in a fire and can stand up well in coastal areas dealing with salty air. Fiber cement siding does have its down sides though. It can be heavy, so don’t expect an army of one installing this product, and repairs can be difficult.
CertainTeed WeatherBoards and ColorMax fiber cement siding are made using a combination of recycled fly ash, Portland cement, wood fiber and specialty additives. The enhanced formula creates an environmentally friendly, lighter-weight, lower-density product with authentic-looking grains and textures.

The Canyon Brick line from Nichiha, USA is available in three color choices, Burnt Copper, Amber Wheat and Shale Brown, extending product options for builders and architects wanting a clean cut symmetrical surface style. The rough texture of Canyon Brick provides a natural brick feel that will give a dramatic, upscale façade to any structure. Panels are 18 in. by 6 ft. in length with a 5/8 in. thickness. Coverage is 9 sq. ft. per panel and the product weighs 31.9 lbs. per panel.

Metal and Aluminum

Metal and aluminum have seen their peak come and go but they are not out of the game yet. Today’s metal siding can look just as much like wood as other wood imitators. Offered in varieties of prefinished colors, today’s metal and aluminum siding can stand up to what the weather has to throw at it and requires little maintenance.

ABC Seamless steel siding is taking the home remodeling industry to a new level. The siding is different from the others, because it’s seamless. Other sidings must be overlapped every 12 ft. to reach the length of your home, creating a pattern of ugly splices. Each piece of seamless siding is custom fit to the exact measurements of the home.

Hardboard and Engineered Wood

Hardboard, made of pressed-wood fibers, is used less and less these days, particularly due to a rash of failures found in the product coming from different mills. Nonetheless, it is still used for its smooth grainless texture that some homeowners desire. Engineered wood is sometime preferred over solid wood because of the processing that takes place with resins to create the perfect boards and is generally treated to give it better protection against elements that can attack untreated wood.

WindsorONE+ primed boards save time and money for builders, remodelers and their painting contractors. The trim boards are made from solid, sustainably grown timber stands and are consistently straight, tight and true. Knots do not exist in WindsorONE+ boards.

Brick and Stone Veneers

Brick and stone veneers and cast products can be attached to the outside of the home without the weight of actual product and for less. One of the most appealing aspects of these veneers is that they are a lower maintenance product compared to their full-bodied counterparts because there is little to no mortar to worry about maintaining down the road.

BellaStone, a part of Exterior Portfolio by Crane — a design group of products from Crane Performance Siding — offers authentic stone designs without the excessive labor and other complications of typical stone installation. BellaStone is now available in ledge stone style panels that come in Tuscan or Torino.

Robinson Brick’s Old Brick Originals product is a real brick that is uniquely cut and packaged into lightweight Thinbrick tiles and corners, allowing the freedom to create magnificent interior and exterior walls without the need for load-bearing foundations. Old Brick Originals is available in a variety of colors in addition to hundreds of brick colors that can be custom cut into Thinbrick tiles and corners to match any interior decor.

Stucco and Synthetic Stucco

Stucco is a cement mixture usually applied to wooden walls or masonry that are covered when used for siding. The structure is reinforced with paper and chicken wire or a metal screening. Synthetic stucco systems may use a variety of different things to give the appearance of stucco, but without the weight associated with real stucco, including foam insulation board or cement panels.

Sto Powerwall Next from Sto Corp. weighs less and can be installed faster than conventional stuccos. It includes: Sto Guard spray-on waterproofing/air barrier featuring EmeraldCoat; reinforcing layer that is expanded galvanized diamond metal lath; scratch coat/brown coat; and a finish that is a flexible, acrylic based, ready-mixed, water-based surface that is either smooth or textured.

GX2 Premium Exterior Stucco from Expo Stucco Products incorporates 10 percent recycled content into the mix, which qualifies it for LEED points. It is available in a variety of textures and colors.

Sakrete’s Water Resistant Type S Mortar/Stucco masonry and stucco product is designed for interior and exterior building and repair of load-bearing walls. In addition, the formula is ideal for use in high-strength structural construction below or above ground level.

Trim Options

A lot of manufacturers of siding products are also offering appropriate trim products to match their products. Trim can come in fiber cement, wood, natural and cast stone and a variety of synthetic materials. Synthetic material offerings have really taken off due to their low maintenance and resistances to rotting, insects and deterioration.

With regular AZEK Trim, the boards can be milled, routed, heat bent or wrapped around columns. Carpenters can create just about anything out of AZEK Trim. To save steps, remodelers can also select AZEK Mouldings. The mouldings come from the factory already in crown, ram’s crown, cove, drip cap, brick mould and many other profiles, so they can be used as is, or layered to create even more ornate exterior mouldings.

Use the reader service card for more information on the following suppliers:

  • ABC Seamless For more info, please indicate #113 in eInquiry form.
  • Alco Home Exteriors For more info, please indicate #114 in eInquiry form.
  • ArcusStone For more info, please indicate #115 in eInquiry form.
  • AZEK For more info, please indicate #116 in eInquiry form.
  • CertainTeed For more info, please indicate #117 in eInquiry form.
  • Crane Performance Siding For more info, please indicate #118 in eInquiry form.
  • Eldorado Stone For more info, please indicate #119 in eInquiry form.
  • Expo Stucco Products For more info, please indicate #140 in eInquiry form.
  • James Hardie For more info, please indicate #141 in eInquiry form.
  • Owens Corning Cultured Stone For more info, please indicate #143 in eInquiry form.
  • Robinson Brick For more info, please indicate #144 in eInquiry form.
  • Sakrete For more info, please indicate #145 in eInquiry form.
  • Sto Corp For more info, please indicate #146 in eInquiry form.
  • Stuc-O-Flex For more info, please indicate #147 in eInquiry form.
  • The Collins Companies For more info, please indicate #148 in eInquiry form.
  • The Foundry For more info, please indicate #149 in eInquiry form.
  • Windsor Mill For more info, please indicate #151 in eInquiry form.