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What is meant by fiber cement siding?

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Quick Answer

Fiber cement siding is a housing covering composed of water, wood pulp, fly ash and portland cement. Good looks, durability, maintenance and affordability make fiber cement siding a popular material choice.

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Full Answer

Each ingredient in fiber cement siding performs a specific function. Water dissolves the wood pulp and activates and hardens the cement. The wood pulp provides resilience and flexibility. Fly ash acts as a filler, and portland cement binds all ingredients together. Portland cement consists of limestone, clay and iron.

Fiber cement siding outperforms competitors in tests of durability across a variety of climates. Fiber cement siding is non-combustible and stands up to wildfires. It withstands harsh winds, salty air and high humidity in coastal climates. Fiber cement siding stands up to termites and fungi in warm, moist climates. It also does not become brittle or crack in cold climates.

Fiber cement siding ranges in price from about 70 cents to $5.25 per square foot. The price is reasonable compared to shingles, which range from $2 to $8 per square foot. Fiber cement siding, however, has a similar look to shingles or painted wood clapboards. Maintain this siding by spraying it with a garden hose at least once a year and inspecting caulked joints every few years.

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