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Cedar & Masonite Siding: Repair or Replace?

Posted by Northface Construction  - Owner & Founder

If you’ve been wondering whether you should repair or replace your Masonite siding, then you’ll enjoy this video below. We’re breaking down how to decide when you need to repair vs replace your siding.

 

In today’s video, we are at an upcoming project in Elk River where we will be replacing some worn Masonite siding. We will be talking about Masonite and Cedar siding and the comparability of those sidings.

What is Masonite Siding and Why Was it Discontinued?

Masonite, or hardboard siding, was incredibly popular in the ’80s through the 2000s. Just 20 years after its inception, did it get discontinued due to its susceptibility to water damage and long term rot. As you can see in the example above, the bottoms can swell due to moisture, and the woodpeckers love to peck away at both Masonite and Cedar siding.

It’s sad to say that Masonite may be more well-known in the industry for its major product failure and unsightly design. Although its reign was short-lived, it was also installed on many homes built around 20-30 years ago which would be perfect timing for any average siding to need replacing. A lot of people who had Masonite switch to Hardie Board which is essentially a new and improved version. The water damage, morphing, rotting, and lack of durability have all been forgone.

With a similar look, there is no doubt homeowners would be able to get the same look they initially loved, but with better quality material. Cedar is another great option we suggest and compare to the old Masonite. It is definitely a lot more expensive, but if homeowners are looking for longevity in a product, as well as sustainability, Cedar may be just the material to install.

Can I Repair Just the Areas Damaged by Woodpeckers?

On this Masonite siding, you can clearly see large holes on the edges from woodpeckers. While it is technically repairable, there are factors that affect how easy or not it is to replace either one of these types of siding material. For example, this Masonite siding we’re looking at in Elk River is face-nail siding. This means the nails are installed directly through the face of the siding. To remove you can simply pull out the nails, take that one piece off, and easily replace.

If your siding is not face-nail then you have to start at the top and work your way down, taking every overlapped piece off just to get to the one you are wanting to replace. This can be costly, time-consuming, and open up an entire can of worms you were not expecting. You will have to repair the siding, paint, or stain to match and spend more time and money on labor for such a small reward. We always tell our homeowners that although technically this woodpecker or water damage can be replaced, it may be far more worthwhile to replace it all.

Is There a Way to Keep Woodpeckers From Destroying My Siding?

If you are in the midst of replacing your Masonite, or looking to install Cedar but are worried about damage from these birds, there are a few things you can do to deter them. First, you can get a noisemaker or a wind chime to keep them away. Woodpeckers are easily startled by sounds, so that can be a non-invasive way to keep them away.

You can also get bird deterrent liquid or spray, but if you fear it is bad for them or the siding, maybe that’s not the best bet. Lastly, you can install aluminum flashing on the corners. The shiny surface and change in tone will keep them from wanting to peck at the corners of the siding. Also, of course, you can install metal or vinyl siding that would be far less likely to be damaged from these birds.

 

If you are one of the many people still living with Masonite siding and are looking for a replacement, we could love to come out to your property and give you an accurate representation of what repair vs replacement would entail and what it might cost you. Our expert team has seen it all and can give you the best option to fit your needs and your budget. Simply give us a call to schedule your consultation at 763-433-2269.

 

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