Fiber Cement Is a Durable Siding That Resembles Wood
A rot-resistant siding
Fiber cement is made from portland cement, sand, and wood fibers. Some manufacturers substitute fly ashFine particulates consisting primarily of silica, alumina, and iron that are collected from flue gases during coal combustion. Flyash is employed as a substitute for some of the portland cement used in the making of concrete, producing a denser, stronger, and slower-setting material while eliminating a portion of the energy-intensive cement required. Energy that goes into making a product; includes energy required for growth, extraction, and transportation of the raw material as well as manufacture, packaging, and transportation of the finished product. Embodied energy is often used to measure ecological cost.. Its durability and the ability to hold paint much longer than wood siding may offset this less green quality.
Fiber-cement siding is hard and impact-resistant, unlike vinylCommon term for polyvinyl chloride (PVC). In chemistry, vinyl refers to a carbon-and-hydrogen group (H2C=CH–) that attaches to another functional group, such as chlorine (vinyl chloride) or acetate (vinyl acetate). siding, which feels flimsy by comparison.
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LESS FREQUENT PAINT JOBS
Lap siding, panel siding, shingles
Most fiber-cement siding products are manufactured to mimic traditional wood siding types. The most common types are lap siding and panel siding. Some panel siding is configured to look like shingle siding.
Is it green?
Smooth fiber-cement shingles or planks make good substitute for traditional wood siding styles. Large panels are more likely to show up on a contemporary home (or be used with applied strips to simulate board and batten). The large panels with flashed or lapped joints can create more continuous surfaces and be cut into interesting shapes.
Portland cement is one of the primary ingredients in fiber-cement products. The resulting embodied energyEnergy that goes into making a product; includes energy required for growth, extraction, and transportation of the raw material as well as manufacture, packaging, and transportation of the finished product. Embodied energy is often used to measure ecological cost. makes the sustainability of this type of siding questionable. But its rot resistance and ability to hold paint longer than many alternatives are good reasons not to scratch it off your list.
Advanced framingHouse-framing techniques in which lumber use is optimized, saving material and improving the energy performance of the building envelope. note: Some fiber-cement siding products may deflect if installed on studs spaced at 24-inch centers. Check with the product manufacturer. You may also want to have a sample wall section built to check the appearance.
Use special saw blades
A number of circular-saw blades are made specifically for working with fiber cement. According to manufacturers, these blades outlast carbide-tipped blades about 150 times over. Each blade has four, six, or eight polycrystalline diamond teeth, which are made by bonding a layer of tiny, tough-wearing diamonds onto an easily welded carbide substrate.
They come in sizes of 7 1⁄4-inch diameter for circular saws and 10-in. or 12-in. diameter for miter saws. The lower tooth count and deep gullets on these blades allow them to take out larger pieces of material rather than kicking up fine dust.
If you’re set on using a saw for cutting fiber cement, you should use these blades.
The International Residential Code (IRCInternational Residential Code. The one- and two-family dwelling model building code copyrighted by the International Code Council. The IRC is meant to be a stand-alone code compatible with the three national building codes—the Building Officials and Code Administrators (BOCA) National code, the Southern Building Code Congress International (SBCCI) code and the International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO) code.) includes requirements for fiber-cement siding installations in Section R703.10. Among the provisions of this section is a requirement that vertical seams of panel siding occur over studs. All horizontal joints in panel siding must occur over blocking and must be flashed with Z-flashing.
Section R703.10.2 requires fiber-cement lap siding to be installed with a minimum overlap of 1 1/4 inch. Lap siding also "shall have the ends sealed with caulking, covered with an H-section joint cover, or located over a strip of flashing."
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