The exterior siding is one of the most important components of your home. Aside from enhancing your home’s exterior appearance, curb appeal and resale value, it also protects your home against the elements. This is why the siding material that you pick is important to ensure your home’s safety and energy efficiency. Picking subpar siding materials will cost you more in the long run due to frequent repairs and maintenance jobs done.
When you’re looking for a new siding material to try out, you should strongly consider James Hardie® siding products. Aside from their excellent appearance and aesthetics, they’re durable, energy-efficient, and protect your home from the elements. Most importantly, they protect your home against fire damage since they’re inherently very fire resistant. This is a very important factor to consider before purchasing a siding material, especially if you live in fire-prone areas, like forests, or hot neighborhoods.
In this post, the trusted James Hardie siding replacement contractor, shares how James Hardie products can protect your home against fire damage, along with their protective properties.
What Is Fire Resistance?
Fire resistance pertains to the property of a wall assembly used together with a James Hardie Fiber Cement siding that prevents, or retards the spread of excessive heat, hot gases, or flames under conditions of use. Other popular materials like wood and vinyl will not last as they combust almost instantly. In turn, they do not provide sufficient fire protection to grant you peace of mind. In fact, wood would actually feed the fire, while vinyl siding panels would melt almost instantly due to their physical properties.
Why Consider James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding?
This isn’t the case when you choose a James Hardie fiber cement siding for your next siding installation project. James Hardie fiber cement siding can help stop the spread of fires in your home since they don’t ignite when they’re directly exposed to a flame, and it won’t contribute fuel to a fire as well. In fact, James Hardie’s fiber cement siding is compliant with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) E136 rating since it’s a non-combustible cladding, and is recognized by fire departments across the United States. This makes it the trusted choice for homeowners looking for siding materials in fire-prone areas.
With that said, James Hardie’s HardiePlank siding won’t allow flames to enter and damage your home’s exterior. However, it still allows heat to transfer. This means that the siding products themselves aren’t one-hour fire-rated. However, they are still qualified for use in certain commercial and residential design assemblies.
It’s also not enough just to pick a fire-resistant siding material. It also needs to be installed by a skilled and certified siding installation contractor. They should be able to follow the manufacturer’s installation procedures to a T to ensure that your new siding unit will perform as intended. When your siding unit is installed properly, you can expect it to resist flames for up to an hour. This gives you a lot of time to secure your valuables and vacate your property into a safe area. This gives you more than enough time for emergency responders to come over to assist you with the emergency situation.
Key Terms to Be Aware Of
Building codes and lab testing standards rate siding materials depending on how they perform when they’re in contact with flames. But first, you’ll need to be aware with some terminologies that some people use interchangeably, but have specific uses. In turn, this lets you make more informed decisions moving forward when you tackle siding projects in the future.
- Combustible. When something is labeled as “combustible”, this means that this material can ignite and burn. Some common examples of combustible materials are wood, wood composites, and polymer.
- Non-Combustible. Noncombustible materials do not ignite and burn under specific conditions. A few examples of which are brick masonry, concrete blocks, cement, metal, and sheet glass. This is why construction materials that are non-combustible are highly preferred by both homeowners and building owners. This goes for every part of your home, from the roofing, siding, doors, and windows.
- Ignition-Resistant. The term “ignition-resistant” often refers to materials that meet a required minimum flame spread reading from 10 to 30 minutes. One popular example of an ignition-resistant material is pressure-impregnated lumber combined with fire retardants. It’s commonly used in siding and roof replacement projects.
- Fire-Resistant. When something is labeled as “fire-resistant”, this refers to how long a structure, such as a wall, can contain a fire. To clear up some confusion, “ignition-resistant” is used to describe materials, while “fire-resistant” is used to describe structures.
Additional Benefits of James Hardie Siding
Aside from its excellent fire resistance, James Hardie siding products are excellent against protecting your home against the elements. Unlike wood and vinyl siding, they do not expand, crack, or curl when subjected to sudden temperature changes. They’re also created to withstand the impact of weather events such as storm damage, moisture, hailstones, and wind damage.
The composition of the fiber cement siding makes it five times thicker than vinyl siding, providing your home with multiple layers of protection against the elements and pest infestation. This effectively gets rid of the threat of termites, woodpeckers, and squirrels since they can’t penetrate through the surface. This is a stark contrast to wood siding where they can penetrate it with ease.
When it comes to exterior appearances, James Hardie’s fiber cement siding doesn’t disappoint thanks to its ColorPlus® Technology. It is a baked-on color option that resists fading. In turn, this makes your siding look beautiful for years to come with minimal maintenance needed. When compared to other materials, they easily show signs of wear and tear due to moisture and harsh weather conditions, causing them to expand and peel over time, making them look unappealing.
Peninsula Siding Company, Inc. is a premier source of James Hardie siding solutions, including installation and repair, in San Carlos, CA. Our top-rated team is committed to providing the comfort and efficiency every residential client needs using industry-leading products and outstanding customer service. Call us today at (650) 529-6798 or fill out our contact form to request a free, no-obligation estimate.