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Vinyl siding, wood and fiber cement siding all offer an efficient and attractive finish for the exterior of your home. Compared to these popular siding styles heavy-duty siding options are more expensive and less simple to install. Many wonder why builders and homeowners choose to invest in heavy-duty siding options like natural stone, brick and acrylic coating. But these types of exterior siding offer a host of benefits that add value to your home and lifestyle.
Unique Types of Exterior Siding
Most suburban homes today are sided with a combination of vinyl siding and brick. Aggregate stucco and wood siding may be used in certain climates, and fiber cement siding is gaining popularity as well. But your options do not end there.
Masonry siding options include clay brick (the most commonly seen style), concrete brick, mortarless stone and natural stone. All of these siding styles are heavy and require extensive work to install. Unless you have the specialized skills to install them yourself, hiring a professional mason or bricklayer to handle masonry siding is wise.
Benefits of Clay Brick Siding
Clay bricks have been used for centuries, from ancient times right up to today's modern house construction. This finish consists of uniform shapes that fit together in an interlocking pattern and are secured with mortar. You can opt for smooth bricks or textured styles; both are available in a wide range of colors and sizes.
Bricks and stone provide an excellent sound barrier, making the interior of your home more peaceful. The thicker profile also helps to add extra insulation against cold temperatures and wind. You'll find that heating and cooling bills tend to be more affordable for a brick house, compared to a similar building finished in vinyl or wood siding.
Benefits of Concrete Brick Siding
Concrete bricks are formed out of concrete, a more widely available material. As a result, this type of brick is less expensive and continues to deliver all of the same benefits as clay. Masons and homebuilders will also tell you that concrete brick products provide a better resistance to water and wear from rain, sleet and snow.
Modern technology and manufacturing provide concrete bricks in a vast array of colors, sizes and styles. Unit costs are lower than other styles of stone or brick, and installation charges should be nearly identical.
Benefits of Mortarless Brick Siding
This product has only been available for a short time, although the concept is not new. Dry fit stone walls have been used for years as fences and barriers. With innovation and imagination, this idea has translated well in the homebuilding industry.
Formed in a distinctive shape, this style is much faster and easier to install than traditional brick siding. It still requires the skills of a trained professional, and will take more time than installing vinyl or wood siding.
The special shape creates an overlap that is water resistant and strong. You can expect the same amount of sound protection and insulation, providing the comfort your family deserves. Look for product lines that allow for proper ventilation and be sure that top quality screws are used during the installation process.
Benefits of Natural Stone Siding
Natural stone siding has also been used for centuries to create an attractive, durable fa ade. Stone stands the test of time, and many century homes and historical buildings were finished in natural stone that looks as good today as it did hundreds of years ago.
Natural stone veneer is fitted together in a well thought out pattern and mortared into place to create a completely unique look. Colors, patterns and textures are virtually unlimited, with fieldstone, cut stone, limestone, granite and cobblestone available. Different installation processes include traditional or guillotine style, as well as random patterning.
This type of siding is one of the more expensive options, although it will provide an upscale appearance and impressive durability. In most cases the installation of natural stone siding will result in a substantial increase in property value. Combining natural stone with vinyl siding or standard brick allows you to save money. Many designs call for natural stone on the front of the house, with standard brick or vinyl siding on the other walls.
Similar to brick siding, natural stone requires a solid foundation. This building component supplies the necessary support for heavy-duty siding materials. Slab foundations and standard foundations can support brick siding; have your builder or general contractor do calculations.
Benefits of Acrylic Coating
Acrylic coatings are gaining in popularity, replacing the weaker aggregate stucco finishes commonly used in the 1970's and 1980's. The newer design requires a solid frame or base, most likely thin concrete or durable polystyrene panels. The acrylic is then applied over fiberglass mesh to help maintain stability. A top layer can be applied with a trowel in a smooth or textured finish. Natural and neutral colors present a clean face for your home, and this more advanced siding option resists crumbling and wear due to exposure. Sudden shock and repeated battering will damage this type of siding quickly and permanently. Repairs may be difficult and costly, depending on the extent of that damage.
Choosing Your Siding
Take the style of your home and personal preferences into account when choosing your siding style. Other homes in the neighborhood present an important factor, as does the climate and building conditions. Bricks and stone veneer cost a significant amount to transport, and another more local option may be a better choice in the end.
Most heavy-duty exterior siding options will increase the value of home. Not only do they provide a timeless and attractive look for your home, stone and brick siding are also extremely durable and long lasting. Vinyl, aluminum and wood siding are not your only options. Consider clay brick, concrete brick, mortarless brick or natural stone veneer. Acrylic coatings provide a modern alternative to aggregate stucco, helping you to create an attractive, safe home for your family.