Vinyl Cladding and Aluminium Cladding for your Home's Exterior

Exterior Cladding Options

When we say exterior cladding, we mean the protective layer that protects your home from external elements. There are many different exterior cladding options to choose from. Our choice of cladding must depend on the climatic conditions and aesthetic preference.

When it comes to exterior cladding options, there are two major types namely the masonry products and siding products. Masonry products include stucco, brick and natural stone while siding products encompass materials such as aluminium, vinyl, wood fibre and cement fibre. Depending on your specific preference, these materials are installed in an angle, horizontally or vertically by skilled professionals.

Before we go into different cladding options, it is important to know a few things about exterior cladding.

Laths are strips of small wood pieces that support the cladding. They help keep the cladding dry by creating an air barrier and an air pocket between the barrier and exterior finish.

The air barrier itself is installed between the intermediate sliding and the frame of homes. This waterproof membrane allows for existing water vapour to diffuse even as it prevents air movement through the wall comprehensively covering the outside of the intermediate envelope.

Wall braces or intermediate siding is usually made of materials such as insulation fibre, OSB or plywood. These insulation panels are used to cover the wall frame effectively keeping the structure steady by screening it against rain and wind.

A thermal barrier is created between the interior of the building and the exterior walls with the insulation. Popularly used insulation materials include glass wool, cellulose and polyurethane.

The vapour sealing layer or the vapour barrier is used to waterproof the area between the interior of homes and the exterior walls. This barrier is installed over the insulation.

Here are the most popular exterior cladding options and their benefits and drawbacks.

Siding Products

  • As we saw earlier, sidings are flexible coverings for the exterior walls made of materials such as aluminium, wood, vinyl, fibre cement and wood fibre.  In terms of popularity and functionality, vinyl scores over the rest. This material is easy to install and budget-friendly. The aesthetically engineered wood or wood fibre siding offers a natural look. This material is durable and easy to install.
  • Vinyl siding is light in weight, affordable and very popular. This siding option comes in various thicknesses and is scratch and shock-resistant. Vinyl siding is one of the exterior cladding options that must be installed carefully by professionals. This siding is available in embossed patterns and a variety of colours.
  • Aluminium siding is predominantly used for upper floors as it is not as shock resistant as vinyl sidings. Some of the obvious benefits of installing aluminium siding is that this material is durable and highly resistant to temperature changes. It can also be enhanced by painting on the surface. Aluminium siding comes in a riot of different patterns and colours.
  • Wood siding lends a warm and natural look. This type of siding is available in different forms such as cedar and spruce panels. As compared to untreated wood, treated wood is protected from rot and lasts for a longer time. To avoid rust, it is recommended to use aluminium or steel nails. Wood siding is versatile which means it can be stained or painted according to your preference. As compared to aluminium or vinyl sidings, wood sidings are easy to maintain.
  • Engineered wood or wood fibre panels look similar to natural wood. Made of a fusion of wood fibres, resin and wax, this material is affordable and easy to maintain. It is shock-resistant and also resistant to temperature variations. Wood fibre does not get impacted by UV rays and humidity. This stable material available in varied patterns and wide selection of colours is popular because it is affordable.
  • Fibre cement panels are asbestos-free and made of materials like cement, cellulose fibres, sand, water and additives. This material is sought by people who are environment friendly. Fibre cement panels are affordable, insect, weather and mildew resistant and low on maintenance. These easy to paint panels are offered in a riot of attractive colours as panels, boards or shingles. You can choose from finishes ranging from smooth to rough.
  • Polyurethane and polymer composites are made with materials like polyurethane or polymer using technologies such as injection and extrusion. This material is extremely durable, light in weight and easy to install. It is rust and mildew proof, unbreakable and flexible. Available in panel form, polyurethane and polymer composites are ideally used in portions of the house. The panels come in many different designs including brick and stone imitation.

Masonry Products

There is no match for masonry products that offer a natural finish. Natural and solid masonry products are known for their durability, quality and elegance. Some of the popular masonry products include clay, natural stone, stucco and other earthy materials.

As compared to siding products, masonry products are more expensive. This is because; cost of materials and labour is high. Masonry products however score in terms of ease of maintenance, sturdiness and sound absorbing capabilities.

Self-supporting bricks – One unique masonry option is to use the self-supporting bricks. These bricks are made of concrete and calcite and screws are used to assemble them. Bricks that lock with each other without mortar are stacked one on top of the other. The starter strip is lined with a layer of bricks and screwed to them after which every fourth row is screwed into the furring strips. As compared to traditional bricks, the self-supporting bricks are easy to install and maintain. They are also water proof and retain their colours.

These are a few exterior cladding options you can choose from. Keeping regulations and climatic conditions in your area in mind, you must take the help of expert cladding professionals to make the right choice.


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We are writing to let you know how happy we are with the thermalboard cladding you put on our house. It has totally transformed our house from an old fibro house to a nicer newer looking home. We are also very happy with the colour, which matches in perfectly with everything and the quality of […]

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Extremely happy Leichardt
August 2020
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