When choosing siding for your home, you need to choose a brand that is durable, can withstand wear and tear, and looks beautiful for you and your guests for years to come. Chances are, you are debating between two companies: James Hardie® Fiber Cement and LP SmartSide® Siding. But when the time comes to start making home improvements, which siding product is the best for your home?
As a James Hardie Elite Preferred Contractor, JD Hostetter believes James Hardie fiber cement siding is best option for Indianapolis homeowners due to its durability against the elements and overall reliability. However, before you commit, here is a comprehensive list of differences between James Hardie siding and LP SmartSide siding to help you make the best siding decision for your home!
What makes James Hardie and LP popular?
LP SmartSide siding has been on the market for roughly 20 years. LP siding is gaining popularity for its ease of installation, lightweight material, and variation of styles and colors.
James Hardie has been in business since 1888, and its siding is loved by customers for not only its beauty, but also for its durability against damage caused by fire, mold, moisture, freezing temperatures, and pests. Even better, James Hardie is the only company to offer products that are Engineered for Climate®, meaning the Hardie products we install on your home are guaranteed to withstand the wet, freezing winters in Indianapolis.
The primary difference between the materials used to make SmartSide siding and Hardie siding is that SmartSide uses a wood-based product, while Hardie uses a cement-based product.
SmartSide uses engineered wood that is coated with wax for moisture resistance. This siding is coated with a SmartGuard® solution, a zinc borate-phased process that adds strength to the product and helps to protect against pests and decay. One benefit to SmartSide is that the siding is lighter in weight and easier to install than other siding brands.
James Hardie uses engineered fiber cement siding, which consists of cement, sand, and cellulose fibers. Fiber cement siding is designed to be long-lasting, meaning it is durable and requires very little maintenance. One benefit to long-lasting fiber cement siding is that it can go several years without needing to be repainted. Unlike the wood siding used by LP, fiber cement siding is much more resistant to weather and pest damage.
Overall, the cost between James Hardie fiber cement siding and LP SmartSide is comparable. Unless you are pinching pennies, the cost will likely not be the deciding factor in what replacement siding you choose.
After factoring in the cost of materials and installation, SmartSide siding costs about $9.00 per square foot to install, according to the Siding Cost Guide.
James Hardie fiber cement siding costs about $10.00 per square foot, after factoring in the cost of materials and installation. Since James Hardie siding is slightly heavier than SmartSide, this increases the material and installation costs. Despite the extra dollar per square foot, James Hardie continues to provide the #1 return on investment on your home improvements when you choose to upgrade your home exterior with fiber cement siding!
Both James Hardie fiber cement siding and LP SmartSide offer a variety of attractive siding options to meet your design style and preferences.
LP SmartSide offers five styles of lap siding: Cedar Texture, 12” Bold Profiles (Triple 4” and Double 5” profiles), 16” Bold Profiles (Quad 4”, Triple 5”, and Double 8”), Colonial Beaded, and Smooth Finish. LP SmartSide offers customers the choice of having their siding arrive prefinished in the factory, or the siding can be painted after the installation is complete.
James Hardie siding offers six styles of lap siding: Cedarmill and Cedarmill Beaded, Smooth and Smooth Beaded, and Colonial Roughsawn and Colonial Smooth. The Cedarmill and Smooth siding styles are offered in the 15 most popular siding colors, a part of the James Hardie Statement Collection™. However, all six styles offer hundreds of color options from The Dream Collection™ with Hardie’s baked-on ColorPlus® Technology. The average paint job in the Midwest lasts 5-7 years, but the James Hardie average paint lifespan is 12-14 years!
The primary difference between SmartSide and Hardie siding warranties is that SmartSide offers a 50-year, prorated limited warranty, while Hardie offers a 30-year, non-prorated warranty. You’ll want to not look at just the length of the warranty, but also at what it does and does not cover.
LP Smartside provides customers with a prorated 50-year limited warranty. The warranty covers 100% of defects only through the first 5 years. Through years 6-49, the warranty is reduced by 2.2% per year. This equates to only 34% coverage after 30 years, while at 30 years, a Hardie customer still has 100% coverage.
James Hardie siding comes with a non-prorated, 30-year warranty. This is considered to be one of the best warranties in the home construction industry. All trim products also come with a non-prorated, 15-year warranty.
Choosing Your James Hardie Elite Preferred Contractor
At JD Hostetter, we recognize that one of the most reliable, versatile and economically sound investments you can ever make for your home is to install fiber cement siding. This is why, as a James Hardie Elite Preferred Contractor, we are committed to providing the best for our customers with America’s #1 cement siding brand, James Hardie. James Hardie fiber cement siding is appreciated by customers for its award-winning quality, customizable appearance, durability, and amazing warranties.
Our expert team takes pride in doing your siding installation right the first time, giving you excellent, trustworthy service and ensuring you enjoy the full benefits of the James Hardie warranty. Request a FREE Siding Estimate to have JD Hostetter get started on improving your home today. We serve the entire Indianapolis metro area including Carmel and Fishers.