As a custom home builder in northwest Virginia, many of our clients are interested in some variation of a modern farmhouse, a rustic mountain lodge, or a traditional style cottage.  While we use a variety of accent materials, including stone foundations, wood beams and columns – the horizontal lap siding takes up the most surface area and upgrading from vinyl can really “make” the exterior.

For these style homes, the most common lap siding material options include:

  • Engineered Wood (LP Smartside)
  • Fiber Cement (Hardiplank)
  • Vinyl
  • Natural wood

Hardiplank and LP Smartside are our two most popular lap siding options; both have the appearance of natural wood, but are aesthetically superior to the “inexpensive” look of vinyl that often warps and shows seams.  We prefer LP Smartside to Hardiplank lap siding for three key reasons.

  1. More water resistant: LP’s manufacturing process uses zinc borate and marine wax, making their engineered wood extremely water resistant. In contrast, Hardiplank is a fiber cement product which is inherently very porous, resulting in water issues over time.
  2. Less expensive to install: LP Smartside boards are longer than Hardiplank, resulting in faster, less expensive installation with no special cutting tools required like that of a fiber cement product.   In contrast, Hardiplank is heavy and more difficult to install.  It requires special cutting tools and can result in additional labor to install in comparison to alternative siding products.
  3. Solid warranty: We have had no issues with this siding; however, we feel confident LP stands behind its products and offers a solid warranty against “(i) fungal degradation; (ii) buckling; and (iii) cracking, peeling, separating, chipping, flaking or rupturing of the resin-impregnated surface overlay for a period of 50 years from the date application is completed.”

Our customers have been thoroughly pleased with this LP Smartside siding and we are grateful for suppliers that continuously innovate to offer premium products for our clients.  Take a look at LP’s website to learn more about the great products they offer.

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