Vinyl Siding vs Fiber Cement: What's the Difference?

Vinyl siding didn't become America's most popular home siding material by accidentFor homeowners contemplating replacement of their home siding or a new home construction, material choice is a critical decision that can impact how one feels about their house for years to come.

The most popular home siding material is vinyl siding, which was first introduced in the 1960s and has evolved into a superior exterior cladding material over aluminum siding and other products, with many color choices and styles that can fit the aesthetic of any home.  Another house siding material is fiber cement, which is more typically associated as being a replacement for wood.

Vinyl siding didn't become America's most popular home siding material by accident; its overall low cost, ease of installation, minimal maintenance and long-term beauty and durability make it a favorite choice among installers and homeowners who would prefer to spend their time and money in other ways.

See what Bob Vila says about vinyl siding's superiority as a home siding product.

When ProVia decided to expand its portfolio of home exterior products in 2009, ProVia's Siding stood out as a leader in the vinyl siding and exterior cladding industry. With its #1 Recommended* Siding CedarMax and #1 Siding Best Buy* HeartTech, Our Siding provides a better alternative to consumer-grade exterior cladding materials, including other brands of vinyl siding and fiber cement (also known as "Hardie board").

For ProVia, which built its reputation for quality products on its steel entry doors, acquiring a vinyl siding manufacturer that would further solidify its standing in the exterior products industry was critical.

ProVia's professional-class, super polymer vinyl siding comes in a number of siding styles and a wide range of colors, making it suitable for homes in any price range.  Additionally, ease of installation, durability, minimal maintenance and the energy efficiency of the company's CedarMAX line make our siding not only a good choice for ProVia, but for discerning homeowners as well.

*leading consumer-focused publication

Vinyl Siding vs. Fiber Cement 

Performance Qualities ProVia Vinyl Siding Fiber Cement 
Appearance Large selection of colors, including darker options and period colors for historic renovations Prefinished options available at higher cost and in limited range of colors
Maintenance Occasional soap and water; does not require caulking or painting Regular re-caulking and re-painting to maintain color and prevent moisture absorption
Water-resistant Yes, non-absorbent No, absorptive
Durability Not easily damaged Can chip and crack during shipping, handling, installation; susceptible to freeze-thaw
Color Retention Independent certification of color retention Must be painted and repainted at regular intervals
Independent Certifications Meets ASTM standards for wind load, impact resistance, appearance None
Energy Efficiency CedarMAX insulated siding reduces heat loss through wall studs No inherent energy efficiency properties
Environmental Impact Contributes to LEED and ICC 700 National Green Building standards Contributes relatively few points toward ICC 700 National Green Building Standard 
Cost Lowest installed and maintenance costs   Runs more than 50% higher than vinyl siding, not counting initial painting
Certified Installers Programs Yes, through Vinyl Siding Institute No
Learn about ProVia's traditional vinyl siding, insulated vinyl siding and decorative siding products: