A material that emulates wood without the downside of wood
One of the crucial phases in building a house is making decisions regarding design, future home expansions and materials. And many of these decisions involve cladding material.
It is not surprising many homeowners choose wood, an extremely popular and versatile material to work with and one of the preferred materials by builders, architects, and homeowners.
Its look brings us even closer to nature and offers us an excellent option to build our house. The decision for cladding material should not be based solely on aesthetic appeal, however, since aspects such as functionality and performance must be part of the decision-making process.
There is a growing trend to only install materials which will respond well in the long run. I recall the house in which I grew up, each spring my parents would have me inspect the cladding of the house. The objective was to make sure the coat of varnish I had applied two summers prior was still in good condition to withstand the intense heat and direct summer sun.
Of course, this was a lot to ask a young man. I needed to apply a coat of varnish to the cladding every spring. Also, I recall seeing small holes and cracks in the wood in which a family of wasps or ants had decided to call it home. Despite a regular maintenance program, the wood siding did not escape from the damage from the sun and the consequent discoloration.
One of the lessons I learned as a young adult is that while wood is a noble and beautiful material, it requires a level of care exceeding what most homeowners are willing to devote to the material.
The money you put in your home should be the result of careful planning since many homeowners want to avoid future maintenance bills. In contrast, wood, one of the most popular alternatives is fiber cement. This material provides great durability and doesn’t require as much attention as wood while achieving aesthetic results comparable to wood.
The Advantages of Fiber-Cement
One of the products we recommend are Nichiha panels. These high performance fiber-cement panels create a look that is practically identical and difficult to distinguish from ordinary wood. Nichiha panels come in similar colors and textures to wood, but the benefits of using this material go beyond the appearance. They can be installed vertically or horizontally and you can choose between cedar, redwood or ash.
Another advantages of Nichiha panels is their consistency. Unlike wood, which is a natural material, the panels prove to be of consistent quality, and more consistency means the builder is able to plan better with greater precision.
The world is changing and one of the new trends is to move to the suburbs or even more remote areas. Some of these remote areas are more exposed to high-risk flammable conditions, including vegetation prone to catching fire and geographic areas exposed to extreme weather conditions. Embers (those small pieces of wood or vegetation) that have caught fire can travel in the air for more than a mile and spread fire easily.
Fiber cement siding has been fire-tested and certified and can provide peace of mind in a increasingly safety-conscious market.
Other advantages of the Nichiha Panels are not worrying about the longevity and discoloration of the material. They also incorporate a rainscreen which protects against humidity and the possible attack of pests.
One of the fundamental issues in construction is staying within budget. This is another of the very positive aspects of fiber cement since the Nichiha panels are designed to be installed easily and quickly and do not require specialized labor, thus saving money.