A Comprehensive Guide to Prefinished Cedar Siding and Its Alternatives

Prefinished cedar siding can save builders a lot of time in the final stages of outfitting the exterior. It is typically considered a smart alternative to unfinished cedar, however it still carries many of the same concerns as all wood siding materials, which is why modern builders are opting for an even better alternative: prefinished cedar siding made from a more durable material.

Not sure which option is best for your lodge or cabin? Take a look at this breakdown of prefinished cedar siding options and find the right pick for your home.

Save Time with Prefinished Cedar Siding

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Prefinished cedar siding can save builders a significant amount of time and hassle in one of the most exciting stages of building a home: finishing the exterior. Available in a variety of colors, prefinished cedar siding eliminates the need for additional paints and stains to be applied onsite. Rather, these finishing applications are completed during fabrication, which means contractors can cross one more task off their list.

More than just convenient, the prefinishing process also ensures that the appearance of the cedar siding is smooth and consistent. Even skilled painters may have a tricky time avoiding on-site painting mishaps, like drips, oversprays, lap marks, streaks, and job site dust and dirt pickup. When the cedar siding is prefinished in the factory, there’s a better chance the surface appearance will be smooth and flawless.

In addition to saving time during the construction process or exterior phase of remodeling, there’s another advantage to choosing prefinished cedar siding for your home. A significant benefit, prefinishing cedar siding can actually strengthen the integrity of the wood before it’s installed. This can ultimately help the siding maintain its structure – along with its appearance.

Wood Still Has Downsides

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Even though prefinished cedar shake siding can save time and enhance the structural integrity of the siding before installation, it’s important to remember that prefinished siding is not a solution for all the typical concerns that come along with wood. After all, prefinished cedar siding is still wood, which means that it will require a considerable amount of ongoing maintenance in order to address the deterioration issues that are associated with wood.

Durability and maintenance are – by far – the most notable downsides of outfitting a home with wood siding, and prefinished cedar siding can still be affected by these concerns. Though cedar is more durable than many other types of wood, like pine, it still has limitations, including a vulnerability to moisture. Warped and rotten panels are an eyesore, as well as a structural concern.

High-humidity areas – like the foundation and perimeters around windows and doors – tend to be most affected by moisture issues, but prefinished cedar siding can also become weathered by the sun. Significant color fading, peeling, blistering, and dry rot are common signs of sun damage that compromise the aesthetic quality of cedar siding.

Meticulous maintenance is the best way to maintain cedar siding. This typically comes in the form of repainting or staining the entire exterior every few years. While opting for prefinished cedar siding may enable you to skip the first round of staining, there’s not really any way to get out of this type of exterior maintenance in the long run.

Alternative Materials: The Look of Cedar without the Risks

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Even with rigorous maintenance and responsible upkeep, cedar siding – whether prefinished or not – doesn’t have a very long shelf life. Depending on the climate conditions, natural cedar siding may only last 20-30 years before it needs a full replacement, and that’s after replacing individual planks over the years to address isolated deterioration on the exterior.

For these reasons, builders tend to look for alternative materials that can provide better solutions. Fiber cement siding products, for example, tend to have warranties that cover the first 30 years – meaning their total lifespan is anticipated to be much longer. These products are much lower maintenance as well, so you’ll most likely see a cost savings when comparing the maintenance needs of prefinished cedar siding.

There are many modern materials that can now be used to craft imitation cedar siding. The best alternatives are those that provide better weather resistance while still capturing the aesthetic allure of traditional red cedar siding.

Prefinished Shakes and Shingles That Look Just Like Cedar from Allura

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Specializing in high-quality cedar-style siding crafted from durable fiber cement, Allura’s selection of prefinished cedar shake siding and shingles are an excellent alternative. Unlike natural or prefinished wood siding, fiber cement siding can withstand the elements and resist deterioration – with minimal maintenance!

Plus, there are plenty of colors and styles to choose from. Whether you’re drawn to the richness of prefinished red cedar shake siding, or you’re looking for a chic gray tone or modern cream color, Allura provides a wealth of prefinished shake and shingle styles that can help you craft the home of your dreams.

Durable, long-lasting, and absolutely gorgeous, Allura’s selection of prefinished cedar shake siding is a fantastic alternative to traditional cedar options.

Contact Allura today to explore beautiful cedar-style shake crafted from fiber cement!

Feel the durability. See the beauty.

Experience the Allura difference first-hand.

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