How’S it going everyone, so i’m here today to talk to you about the white james, hardy, siding that we used on our new build, why we decided to go with it and whether or not we’d use it again. Okay, so i’m gon na take you for a tour around the house in a minute and get some close-ups of what this stuff looks like fully installed. I’M gon na start by saying that we agonized over the decision to use this stuff for many nights when the cost was nearly doubled out of using vinyl siding. And the reason was that when we started looking for what general style and theme we wanted for our house, of course, we spent a lot of nights on pinterest and instagram and pouring through the internet, and we stumbled across the modern, farmhouse style and pretty much fell In love with it, it seemed like the white siding was really the only way to capture that feel that we were going for and james hardy, the cement fiber siding, seemed to be really the gold standard of what builders that were doing. This kind of style were using so anyways.
There was a lot of back and forth about whether or not it was worth the price and i’m gon na go over why it cost so much what the downsides of using it were and whether we would use it again. Okay guys so we use the board and baton siding on most of the front of the house. This stuff comes in four by eight sheets and the battens go on afterwards. We use some of the lap siding up in the peak there and then as well. The rest of the side of the house and the back of the house are all done in that uh five and a half inch lap siding so, and you can see we use it on this bump out to give it a bit of a different texture.
And i’m gon na take you around the side of the house now, okay! So here’s a look at the transition from the board and batten style on the front over to the lap siding on the side of the house. Here’S a look around the side in the back of the house. It’S all in the five inch lap, siding okay guys. So what really pushed us over the edge to decide to use this product was the fact that we were building a two-story home and if we did it in vinyl, we didn’t mind the look of some of the board and batten vinyl products.
Even though the battens are much thinner, you can’t get this wide look where we have this. We decided to go with the 16 inch spacing on our battens and you can actually do them in 24s or 12s or, of course, six. If you wanted to any increment. That’S divisible by 48 because the board and batten comes in four by eight sheets, which i can show you one of later. You can pick any increment for how tight you want your battens to be, but we thought that that 16 inch spacing look gave it a good beefy look and it fit for the size of the house.
When we looked at a lot of the vinyl products, the spacing on that board and batten style was too tight and it looked too thin, there’s too many lines and then not to mention. The next thing was that the white colors the tone of this white. It looks very bright when you’re up close and personal, but when you hold it side by side with a vinyl white, this is actually a fairly gray and dark tone of white versus some of the vinyls look more bleached out and they really pop and look fake And they don’t look like this is meant to replicate sort of an authentic painted wood look and we think it does a pretty good job. It also has a cedar mill pattern to it, so it looks more like wood, okay, so the lighting’s not the best here in this section, but you can see this board and batten siding and it does have a cedar mill pattern to it. I don’t know if you guys can see that that it actually has a bit of it, looks like a wood groove same with on the battens, so this sheet goes on underneath first and then these battens get attached separately afterwards.
Now, there’s a ton of caulking involved, because these battens look best when they’re caulked all the way down. They don’t have to be because this is a rain screen, and there is strapping in behind this and that’s part of what made it so expensive to put on. Is the strapping and the labor intensiveness to go with that, even though that should be done with vinyl anyhow most times where we’re from here people aren’t doing it and they’re saving a ton of cost? That way now, when we went with white in the country, we knew that we were going to have some troubles with bugs and cobwebs, and we certainly do. I don’t know if you guys can see that up there and up in this porch section it’s a little bit dark, but there is a lot of spider webs and we get dust exactly exhaust trucks going down the road we get dirt.
But still it’s pretty minimal and i would say it doesn’t really change the overall look of it. It’S never gotten dirty enough to really make it not. Look that fresh clean look that it already does okay, so we love the look and now, let’s talk about some of the cons of why we were about to opt against this product and what made it so hard to get it done and get it done. Affordably because those are really the biggest downsides, so one there’s not a lot of installers for this product in our area. Two, the product is not that easy to get it’s it’s not nearly as as widely held in stores as vinyl, so you have to special order.
It if you under order you take a long time to get material again when you have people waiting on the job and if you over order, you can’t really recoup much of the cost that you spent. The material is very breakable. It’S very heavy! It’S very dusty! When you cut it, so the people that do install it charge a premium and the material itself is a lot more expensive than vinyl.
For example, when we look at the end of this gable up here, that section was extremely labor intensive to finish because of the scaffolding setup and the sheer weight of getting all this product, just the weight of lifting it off the ground and up it was so Much work that it just took so many hours and a lot of effort to get it up there, and these common in four by eight sheets made it almost impossible. It all had to be cut before it got moved up top and then it had to be used in pieces. Now, when we go around the side, i’m going to show you something as well now, one of the downsides of the siding that i knew about going in was that it telegraphs any issues with the framing and you’re gon na see. When i look down the side here that you can’t really notice that we look straight on, but this siding definitely takes on a wave anywhere that the framing is not dead flat. Okay, so you see how it sort of follows the framing and you might get a bit of a wave to it.
People spend a lot of money on this look and they’re, not too happy when they find out that it can be so wavy if their framing’s not on point. But it definitely takes a lot of time and a lot of energy to strap it and further strapping. In and out like, you should, if you want it to be perfectly flat and not everyone’s going to do it to the fullest degree, because it could just add so much time and cost to the job. Okay, so talk in details. There is a ton of metal work to go into this and a ton of prep for using this hardy in general.
There’S a lot of flashings there’s a flashing above this trim. There’S one below it to kick out over the window. There’S one continuously down along the bottom and there’s just a ton of things that make the install of this product a lot more labor intensive than vinyl. Okay, guys we’re in my garage. Now, i’m just going to show you this stuff, real, quick!
You can see how it’s painted on one side and where it’s bare, on the other, it’s got a small one-inch nailing strip at the top, where your nails go and they’re a special style of spiralized uh siding nail. You cannot use roofing nails because this stuff has a ton of weight, so it wants to fall down. Basically, it’s you need some of the good pull out resistance, but anyhow it’s it’s. Just the cement fibers product makes a ton of dust when it gets cut. It’S really brittle and it’s really heavy.
I just want to show you real, quick with a small piece of this which, by the way, i have a bunch left over in my garage because i’m worried if anything ever gets broken, i’m not going to be able to get uh replacement material in time. For this stuff, so just to show you look at this, it’s basically like drywall, guys like it, doesn’t take much at all, i’m going to go right over the edge here and you see how that stuff just snaps like that. So you definitely end up losing a bit of product, because these things come in long 12 foot pieces and when you try and move it a few at a time they really start to sag and they tend to want to snap. So you lose some product that way and you end up wasting a bit of money. Okay, so we’re in my garage now i’m going to show you the back of one of the pieces of the board and batten siding there.
It is right there you can see. It’S a full sheet and it’s just this cement fiber, it’s not painted on the back and then there’s what a piece of the trim looks like it’s hauled out, got these channels for drainage, and you can see the same thing. There’S that cement fiber and this stuff is heavy. That leads me on to one of the next big downsides. People have told me about this stuff is that when you got things like hockey, pucks being shot at your house and they miss and hit your siding, apparently it leaves a pretty bad mark and it’s not that easy to fix all right guys.
Well, this isn’t a hockey puck, but it’s a small dumbbell plate and i just want to show you what happens if i hit this stuff, so it marks up, it doesn’t break, but it definitely takes on a stain and it chips. I don’t know if you can see that there’s a pretty deep chip in there and you’re never really totally going to recover. That now mind you vinyl might just break. When that happens. You can cover over this with a touch-up paint and some caulking.
They do have color match touch-up, but that’s definitely one of the potential downsides of this stuff versus wood. I wouldn’t compare it to vinyl because i think it’s more hardy than vinyl. In that sense, it can take a bit more of a beating, but i don’t think that wood would crack and chip the same way that this stuff does versus some abuse from kids toys games. That kind of thing i got ta say thank you very much to our awesome. Installers.
We haven’t had a single bit of water trouble with this stuff and it’s all thanks to the attention to detail they put into the flashings and as well as our awesome framers, who did an amazing job at putting on tape. To begin with, on our exterior foam insulation, we’re very happy with this product. Final conclusion is that we are glad that we used it. We went a little overkill on our house in general and i don’t think that we would recoup as much of the cost as we will. If we hadn’t went with vinyl, because i think it would have dumbed the whole look down.
So all in all we’re happy with it and i think it’s safe to say that we would use this product again in this application and subscribe. If you’re. Looking for more videos like this, i’m going to continue to review our new build and i’ve got a bunch of exciting stuff. Coming up that, i’m going to try and dive into some more building science and renovation advice, as well as general advice in terms of how to buy renovate and build your way towards your ideal home.