What’s the difference between LP siding and Hardie board?
Here is an in-depth analysis of the top features and prices of the two popular siding materials so you can accurately determine which best suits your needs.
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LP SmartSide vs Hardie Cost
Cost is the number one concern for many homeowners looking to replace siding on their homes. It’s safe to say that pricewise, LP SmartSide and Hardie have a similar price range, though Hardie boards are still somewhat more expensive.
Other factors also impact the final price of siding installation. For example, the size of your home, its layout, and location affect how much the siding replacement will cost.
Additional insulation and other materials will add to the price, too, so discussing a quote before committing is typically recommended. However, here’s what you can expect in terms of LP SmartSide vs. Hardie siding cost.
Siding Cost Breakdown Per Square Foot
The table below compares the cost of installing Smart Siding vs James Hardie.
|James Hardie||LP SmartSide|
Hardie fiber cement siding costs $2.50-$5.50 per square foot, and the installation costs $8-$12.5.
In total, installing Hardie boards will cost you between $10.50 and $17.50 per square foot, though the average range is closer to $11.50 to $15.50.
James Hardie Siding ROI
New siding is a long-term investment, and most homeowners will want to know the resale or recouped value they can expect from the siding they select. By choosing Hardie fiber cement siding, you can expect an ROI in the 68% to 87% range.
For Example: If the siding replacement was $10,000 in total, but the ROI is 80%, the siding would increase the overall sale price of the home by $8,000.
LP SmartSide Cost
One of the reasons LP SmartSide is a little less expensive than Hardie siding is because engineered wood is lighter than cement and easier to handle.
If you’re leaning toward LP SmartSide siding, you’ll need to set aside $2.50-$4.50 per square foot for materials alone, while the installation cost ranges around $7-$11.50. So, the total cost range per square foot is around $9.50-$16.50.
However, these are the LP SmartSide low-end and high-end prices; the average LP SmartSide price range is between $10.50-$14.50. Again, many factors will impact the final price, and if your home is in a remote area or is unusually structured, the cost may even be higher.
LP SmartSide ROI
When it comes to cost to value recouped, LP SmartSide is in a similar range to Hardie Siding. You can expect 70% to 88% ROI for engineered wood siding, though perhaps even more if the siding is well-maintained.
Pro Tip: Adding insulation to your siding products can increase the home’s thermal resistance or R-Value. Furthermore, the insulation makes a home more energy efficient. Therefore, it can positively affect the resale value of the property.
LP SmartSide VS Hardie Materials
Materials are at the top of the list when discussing the main differences between LP SmartSide and Hardie.
Because there are several material options, each with specific benefits and drawbacks, homeowners should consider the type of materials that suits their home first.
What is James Hardie Siding Made of?
The James Hardie brand, or Hardie for short, is synonymous with fiber cement siding. The company revolutionized the siding industry by introducing fiber cement to the market in the 1980s.
Fiber cement has proven to be incredibly practical and environmentally sustainable. Fiber cement contains four ingredients: Portland cement, wood pulp, water, and coal combustion residual, also known as fly ash.
However, cement comprises around 90% of the material used. The James Hardie brand touts this material to be entirely rot-proof and fireproof, and it’s also very resistant to pests and extreme temperatures.
The Hardie siding is low-maintenance, and homeowners needn’t worry about repainting for years.
What is LP SmartSide Made of?
If you prefer the siding on your home to mostly resembles wooden planks without the associated downsides, you might want to consider LP SmartSide siding.
Engineered wood is one of the most popular siding choices these days, and LP is the brand that makes high-quality solutions. LP SmartSide is a mix of wood strands bonded with resin and similar binders.
LP SmartSide’s engineered wood is also coated with wax for extra durability and protection against rot and pests. This proprietary blend contains a zinc borate compound designed to prevent any development of mold, mildew, or fungi.
Compared to fiber cement, engineered wood is lightweight, thus making sure the builders can cut it more efficiently without any specialized tools.
LP SmartSide vs Hardie Style
With the right siding, the resale value of a home can increase substantially, so it’s fair to say that appearance is quite important. A closer look at the colors and styles offered by the LP SmartSide and Hardie product lines can further highlight the differences between the two siding brands.
James Hardie Siding Colors
Hardie siding boards come in a large variety of colors and finishes. You can opt for textured or smooth siding or go with a traditional or modern look.
Some Hardie boards include Hardie Shingle Siding, Hardie Panel Vertical Siding, Hardie Trim Boards, Hardie Soffit Panels, and Hardie Architectural Collection.
However, their best-selling product line is the Hardie Plank Lap Siding, a traditional and timeless design feature in many North American homes. Hardie Plank Lap siding comes in two versions, Select Cedarmill and Smooth.
Select Cedarmill is also called their “Statement Collection” and comes in many colors, though primarily classic shades that are always in style.
The planks are 144 inches long and 0.312 inches thick and are available in several widths. The Smooth Hardie Plank Lap siding features a modern and sleek design, guaranteed to boost the curb appeal.
Did you know? Fiber cement siding is incredibly resistant to flooding. If you live in an area where flooding is relatively common, fiber cement siding might be an excellent way to protect your home.
LP Siding Colors
Whatever your sense of design, if you’re looking for a wood-like siding with excellent durability and low maintenance, LP SmartSide has several excellent options.
Every LP SmartSide product is available in 16 proprietary ExpertFinish colors. Homeowners can choose from Snowscape White to Abyss Black and many colors in between.
LP SmartSide is available in panel and vertical siding, shakes trim and fascia, and soffit. Still, the company’s most popular product is LP SmartSide Lap Siding, available in cedar texture with a smooth finish.
Cedar texture delivers an impressive realistic appearance and well-defined shadow lines that resemble traditional wood. The smooth finish works with various architectural designs, including Cape Cod and Modern Farmhouse.
It’s also the perfect choice for creating unique visual details. The siding boards are 16 feet long and have fewer seams, thus delivering a more elegant, cleaner appearance.
LP SmartSide VS Hardie Siding Installation
Homeowners should gain the right skills and experience before starting a DIY siding installation project. Even though it is recommended that you hire a professional to install your sidings, it’s important to understand the process and potential pitfalls.
James Hardie Siding Installation
Because cement is the most prominent ingredient of the Hardie siding proprietary material, the boards are expectedly pretty heavy.
This makes the installation process more complicated and labor-intensive than it is with other materials. Furthermore, Hardie boards can usually take longer to install, which could impact the overall cost.
Due to its heaviness and potential to crack if not appropriately handled, cement siding is more prone to mistakes during installation. The ultimate success of the installation process largely depends on the installer’s qualifications.
LP SmartSide Installation
Undeniably, LP SmartSide siding is easier to install as it is light, and installers can use the same equipment they use for traditional wood siding.
However, before the installers can attach the siding, LP SmartSide edges require priming and painting, which takes extra time. Again, the overall installation result will depend on how the contractor approaches the process.
LP vs James Hardie Durability
To the untrained eye, LP SmartSide and Hardie siding look relatively similar, but the materials used to construct them are quite different. Thus, if we set aside the price tag, one of the biggest concerns for homeowners is durability.
While these are both high-quality siding materials, there are a few notable differences when it comes to how durable they are.
James Hardie Durability
Durability is precisely why so many people choose Hardie siding. The brand’s wide range of products allows buyers to select siding that best suits their region.
Furthermore, Hardie boards are among the brands of sidings more resistant to fire. The fiber cement will protect your home from fast-spreading flames, which is particularly important for homeowners living in areas with seasonal wildfires.
For this reason, James Hardie siding is frequently recommended by firefighting agencies. Finally, Hardie fiber cement siding is also termite resistant and does not rust or rot.
LP SmartSide Durability
Unlike Hardie siding, LP SmartSide isn’t fire-resistant as it is made with natural wood fibers. However, LP SmartSide is still durable and long-lasting.
One of the best features of LP SmartSide’s engineered wood is that it holds up well in any climate and offers excellent impact resistance. Furthermore, LP SmartSide is resistant to pests and termites, which might surprise some as it is made with natural wood.
The zinc borate compound added to the material successfully deters insects and prevents rot which is common with traditional wood siding.
LP SmartSide VS Hardie Warranty
LP SmartSide and James Hardie siding both have an incredibly long life expectancy. With proper maintenance, the siding could last up to 50 years. But is this longevity reflected in the manufacturer’s warranty?
James Hardie Warranty
Hardie boards have one of the best warranties in the industry. The manufacturer attaches a limited 30-year warranty that covers damage caused by termite attack or hail.
The company also guarantees that the Hardie boards are free from defects and that they will replace the siding or issue a full refund during the 30-year warranty. This is also called the non-prorated warranty, which is the gold standard.
Furthermore, Hardie siding is transferable from the original buyer, but only once. Those installing new siding for resale purposes should keep this in mind as they will need to disclose it to the new owners. With a Hardie boards warranty, homeowners can feel secure as the manufacturer has a stellar reputation.
Did you know? Contrary to popular belief, manufactured siding has a longer lifespan than natural products like wood. Fiber cement, engineered wood, and vinyl are designed to be long-lasting and are often less damaging to the environment than raw materials.
LP SmartSide Warranty
While the LP SmartSide offers a limited 50-year warranty, it decreases the scope of coverage as time progresses. This prorated warranty covers 100% of manufacturing defects in the first five years but reduces by 2.2% every year by the end of the warranty.
Some homeowners will focus on the fact that the LP SmartSide warranty is 20 years longer than Hardie’s, but that is only part of the picture.
For example: With the LP SmartSide warranty, if damage occurs in the year 10, the manufacturer will only cover 89% of the total cost. The remaining 11% would come out of the homeowner’s pocket.
However, it’s also important to point out that LP SmartSide has had some warranty upgrades over the years.
For example: The hail damage protection was previously not part of the warranty coverage but is now. LP SmartSide warranty is transferable, which Is essential for those investing in new siding with the idea of selling their home down the line.
LP SmartSide VS Hardie Maintenance
LP SmartSide and Hardie siding are low maintenance, however some efforts are required to ensure it lasts longer.
Hardie Board Maintenance
Hardie siding requires bi-annual cleaning to remove accumulated dirt and debris. Naturally, if you live in a high-traffic, busy area, you’ll probably need to clean the siding more frequently.
A soft brush with some water and mild detergent is all you need to keep the Hardie siding looking great and new. Make sure to rinse the soap before it dries, but don’t use a power washer as it can damage the siding.
LP SmartSide Maintenance
Engineered wood siding requires similar maintenance levels as cement fiber. Depending on the exposure to pollutants, weather, and other factors, cleaning the LP SmartSide siding should be done between one and three times per year.
Wiping down the siding with warm water and mild detergent is all you need to keep it looking pristine. However, a mixture of white vinegar and water could do the trick with stubborn stains.
SmartSide vs Hardie Board Pros And Cons
We’ve discussed the main features, cost, warranties, and product lines. But it’s also important to lay out the advantages and disadvantages of each type of siding for a more effective comparison. That way, you can rule out problems and focus on specific benefits.
Hardie Board Pros
There are many fantastic reasons why Hardie siding is the best choice for any home in the U.S.
Hardie boards’ durability comes to mind first.
It’s resistant to hail damage, and the warranty fully supports that fact. Hardie siding offers better curb appeal than vinyl, another popular optionon the market.
Hardie boards don’t shrink, are warp resistant, easy to wash, are generally low-maintenance, and can withstand winds of up to 130 miles per hour.
Hardie siding is available in many styles and colors, and homeowners can purchase matching soffits and trip to complement their homes.
LP SmartSide Pros
One of the most prominent advantages of choosing LP SmartSide is its aesthetic appeal. The cedar grain texture is particularly popular and fantastic-looking.
Furthermore, the added zinc borate and proprietary binders make this siding resistant to water and mold damage. And the less complicated installation process results in less side waste.
LP SmartSide is also a sustainable solution, and despite the low-emitting resin content, the company practices eco-friendly wood fiber sourcing solutions.
|James Hardie||LP SmartSide|
|Very Durable||More Affordable|
|30-Year Non-Prorated Warranty||Eaiser Installation|
James Hardie Cons
While incredibly durable and great-looking, Hardie siding is not perfect. It can be costly, so those on a tight budget might want to reconsider.
Fiber cement is a heavy material which means installation requires more time, labor, and expertise than other types of siding.
Finally, even though Hardie siding can resemble natural wood, it doesn’t mimic it as well as LP SmartSide.
Pro Tip: When it comes to siding, cost-effectiveness is an important feature. While the initial cost of siding might be a deal-breaker for some, potential buyers should focus on what pays off in the long run and not choose the cheapest option straight away.
LP SmartSide Cons
Perhaps one of the most significant downsides of choosing LP SmartSide is the lack of fire resistance, particularly when compared to Hardie siding.
The prorated 50-year warranty is another problem for some, though the first five years are fully covered against all damages.
Finally, even with high-quality priming, coating, and zinc borate content, termite damage could occur in some areas of the country.
|James Hardie||LP SmartSide|
|More Expensive||Not Fire Resistant|
|Harder to Install||Less Comprehensive Warranty|
|Less Attractive||Fewer Product Options|
LP vs. Hardie: Which Is Better?
If you’re looking for fire, flood, and hail-resistant siding and don’t mind paying more upfront, Hardie siding is probably the best solution for you.
On the other hand, LP SmartSide delivers maximum curb appeal and is a well-made, durable product that fits many home styles in many locations. Furthermore, it’s slightly less expensive than Hardie siding.
Ultimately, whichever you choose, you can expect an excellent return on investment and low-maintenance requirements.