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Price of Fibre Cement Siding and Installation Guide

Price of Fibre Cement Siding and Installation Guide

Exterior renovationsPrice of Fibre Cement Siding and Installation Guide

Are you considering installing fibre cement siding during your next renovation project? While the motivational factors behind such an undertaking are likely plenty, you may still be hoping to get pertinent information about the cost of installing such a siding to make a well-informed decision. 

To help your thought process, here’s a rundown of fibre cement siding installation guidelines as well as information regarding the budget to anticipate regarding such a purchase and endeavour.

Installing Fibre Cement Siding on Your Home’s Exterior Walls

Fibre cement

Source: Canva

A Warning About Fibre Cement Cladding Installation

While recognized for its mighty resilience as well as its fireproof properties, fibre cement siding still mandates a precise installation procedure. You may have heard some sort of criticism regarding this material, mainly highlighting its tendency to crack. 

While the latter is true, it seems that such said drawback is more likely to result from a poor knowledge of the product’s specificities rather than a lack of resilience on its part. This lack of knowledge appears to be the reason why installation guidelines aren’t always adhered to, thereby causing the siding to crack in some areas. 

Additionally, it’s imperative to highlight the fact that fibre cement siding appears to better suit a wooden framework rather than a metal one. Furthermore, small-sized fibre cement panels seem to be more resilient compared to those that surpass the 10-foot scale. 

3 Preventitve Measures When Installing this Siding Type

1) Having enough fasteners

To avoid having to face cracking, certain precautionary measures must be adhered to, one of which is deemed as the most important, which is ensuring you have the right amount of fasteners, and that these aren’t screwed in too close to the siding’s edges. Following along with the manufacturer-provided diagram regarding this step is of utmost importance.

2) Properly storing the fibre cement

As for storing this type of siding, note that it must be shielded from moisture, especially considering that installing damp panels is highly likely to result in joint expansion between the panels, which is assuredly adverse. If the siding panels are wet, it’s advised to allow the material to dry prior to installation. Damp panels are easy to spot as they’ll be darker in colour. Lastly, to prevent any sort of breakage, the panels should be stored horizontally, on a flat surface, shielded from unfavourable weather.

3) Properly handling the panels

This much is a given, as it would be unfavourable to install damaged panels. To prevent any damage to the siding, avoid sliding the siding panels back and forth on the ground before mounting them. Doing so could scrape the underside of the panels. No need to mention that improper panel handling will end up costing you a lot! Instead, grab ahold of the panels’ centre to move them, while supporting them length-wise.

How to Install Fibre Cement Wall Cladding

Fibre cement siding installation

Source: Canva

What are the panels secured with?

First off, let’s start off by stating that siding nailers can be used to secure your exterior siding, but can’t be used to fasten any decorative exterior trim. Furthermore, note that framing nailers should be avoided, as they’re likely to mark the material. Should you choose to use a hammer, select a model that has a smooth face.

Lastly, note that you should choose corrosion-proof nails, made with stainless steel or double hot- or cold-dipped galvanized steel. Doing so will prevent rust from dripping over the siding surface.

Siding Installation: How to Nail the Panels

To install the panels, let’s start off by saying that you must install 1-inch by 3-inch furring strips. Doing so prevents nailing or screwing too close to the sidings' edges. 

Next, you’ll have to install a starter strip. The latter should be fastened according to the pre-drilled holes, not randomly along the metal bar. As such, the nail will be able to shift along with any motions generated by freeze-thaw cycles. Always abide by the nailing flange outlined by the manufacturer. Note that the siding must be installed on a surface that’s more than an inch thick. Ideally, said surface should be plywood. 

Begin installing the panels from the bottom, moving upwards, all the way up to the soffits. Note that the panels don’t require expansion joints and can be installed without caulking. However, you’ll have to offset the lack of sealant resulting from the absence of caulking by inserting a waterproofing membrane behind the joints. Secure it in place with nails hammered 16 inches apart, measured centre to centre. 

To ensure the quality of the fibre cement cladding installation, allow for ¼ inch gap between the windows’ weatherproofing flashings and the foundation to allow the water to drain. Also, make sure the panels are installed at least 20 cm off the ground. 

Furthermore, a 5 cm spacing should be adhered to between the roof and deck. Also, it’s advised to observe a 2-inch gap between the roofing features. Another important factor: Alternate the panels to ensure the vertical and horizontal joints aren’t ever overlapping and avoid installing two panels over 12 feet butt to butt should you be installing large-scale panels. 

When it comes to a wooden framework, the nails should be driven 1 ¼ inch into the frame. If your fibre cement cladding is installed atop metal framing, the screws should penetrate the structure by at least ¼ inch. 

The manufacturer’s installation guide may advise you to pre-drill the holes slightly wider than the nails prior to hammering them into the siding. Upon finishing, it’s also advised to apply a stain or sealant over the panels that were cut.  

How much does fibre cement cladding cost per square foot?

For those who are still tempted to purchase this type of exterior cladding, note that you’ll have to budget between $5 and $15 per square foot, installation costs included. Note that the cost of the material may vary from one retailer or manufacturer to the next. Also, there’s a significant range of quality among products available on the market.  

For that reason alone, it’s best to turn to the expertise of a trade professional to choose a product that meets both your needs and budgetary constraints.

For more information, here’s a per-square-foot product price chart:

Square Footage

Siding Price

250 square feet

$1,250 - $3,750

500 square feet

$2,500 - $7,500

1,000 square feet

$6,250 - $18,750

1,500 square feet

$7,500 - $22,500

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Last modified 2024-02-23

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