Have you ever heard of furring strips for siding? This simple component can help siding provide better protection from water damage, and it serves a very important role in moisture control and weather-proofing a home’s exterior.
Whether you’re remodeling an old house, updating the siding to something more modern, or building a home from the ground up, being familiar with all the advantages possible can help you create a longer-lasting exterior that will provide better protection from the elements.
Furring strips are a simple addition that can enhance the overall performance of siding. Let’s take a look at the purpose of furring strips, how to install them, and additional ways to help boost moisture control with the proper siding installation and materials.
What Are Furring Strips?
Usually made from plywood or metal, furring strips are long, narrow pieces of material that are installed intermittently as part of the exterior to create essential space and airflow within the wall. Furring strips cannot be seen from the outside because they are positioned between the weather-resistant barrier and the siding. Though certain variations exist depending on the construction technique used, most builders work with weather-resistant barriers like a rainscreen or housewrap.
Furring strips serve two primary purposes. First, they provide a surface to which the siding can be attached outside of the housewrap. Most panel siding requires a solid surface or backing for a secure and stable attachment. Furring strips provide reliable backing.
The second — and most important — purpose of furring strips for siding is that they create a crucial gap between the siding and the weather-resistant barrier of the home’s exterior. This gap effectively forms a drainage plane that enables the rainscreen to work as designed. In other words, it allows moisture to drain downwards and dry off without seeping further into the home.
Why Is Ventilation So Important for Siding?
Since they help in moisture management by providing additional ventilation and drainage, furring strips are a valuable part of the exterior makeup of the home. Ventilation is crucial for water management because it can do severe damage when water lingers.
Saturated areas and stagnant moisture can lead to various issues that can affect the structural integrity and aesthetic beauty of a home. Excessive moisture and humidity can provide the right conditions for mold and bacterial growth, which can compromise indoor air quality. Moisture can also lead to leaks or ugly wall stains — both on the interior and exterior. In addition, moisture damage can weaken certain materials like wood, causing the siding or structural beams to rot, swell, or become soft. When proper ventilation and water management are present, many of these issues can be avoided.
How to Install Furring Strips for Siding
Horizontal beams can form little ledges and become a trap for moisture. For this reason, furring strips should always be installed vertically to establish an effective drainage plane that helps water runoff flow downwards. Install the furring strips between the housewrap and the siding, leaving a significant gap between each strip to allow enough airflow to help with ventilation needs.
Furring strips are a versatile feature that can be used with a wide range of exterior siding styles and materials. Furring strips for Hardie siding and furring strips for vinyl siding are essentially the same. Vertical siding layouts may require furring strips to be installed with less space between them, meaning you may need more furring strips for board and batten siding and other vertical layouts so that each panel has a strip beneath it to serve as backing.
Boost Protection with Moisture-Resistant Siding
As every builder knows, small details can make a world of difference when it comes to the finished product. Though furring strips are a small exterior component, they can provide excellent ventilation and enhance the structure’s ability to deal with moisture.
Equipping the exterior with moisture-resistant siding is another great way to help the home perform its best. Some materials, like wood, are much more vulnerable to the effects of moisture and humidity. Choosing a more durable, water-resistant material like fiber cement can boost the exterior’s performance.
Fiber cement siding is an excellent example of a moisture-resistant material option that can help enhance the exterior’s defense against rain, snow, and humidity. Allura has a beautiful range of weather-resistant siding products crafted from high-quality fiber cement. Whether you’re interested in shake, horizontal lap, or modern panels, these weather-resistant options provide better durability, a longer-lasting performance, and enhanced protection from the elements.
Ready to explore the options? Contact Allura today to discover an impressive range of weather-resistant siding for all aesthetic preferences.