Part 3: Siding Showdown: Steel vs. Other Siding Materials – Steel vs. Fiber Cement
Fiber cement combines the strengths of wood and concrete and does away with either material’s weak points. Has steel siding finally met its match? Both materials are excellent options, but there are some instances when steel outshines fiber cement.
You might be wondering about how a material’s stiffness gives it an edge over other options. Steel is more rigid than fiber cement, meaning steel siding panels will lay flatter against your home’s exteriors. A flatter, more uniform fit not only looks better, but also helps minimize seams where water can pass through and cause moisture-related problems for your home.
Ease of Maintenance
Both steel and fiber cement siding require very low maintenance. Most of the time, caring for the siding materials usually involves nothing more than a thorough cleaning once a year, plus some minor retouches with paint, if needed. Steel siding does have a bit of a leg up over fiber cement siding when it comes to repairs though. When steel siding is damaged, highly visible dents may be remedied with a little hammering to get the siding back into shape. On the other hand, if fiber cement siding is damaged, it will have to be replaced.
Fiber cement is one of the more expensive siding materials available today. There are more affordable siding materials than steel but compared to it, you’d have to pay almost double for fiber cement. Steel offers better value then as it is more affordable than fiber cement and yet offers comparable, if not better, benefits as a siding material.
Fiber cement is heavy, making installation more difficult as the siding material would need specific tools and techniques to put up. Retrofits involving fiber cement will also require the complete tear-off of old siding, adding a day or two to the total project time and to the cost as well. Steel siding, on the other hand, may be installed over other siding material, simplifying the installation process.