Once you have settled on installing fiber cement siding, the next big dilemma is which brand to choose? Usually the battle is between Allura vs James Hardie siding.
Lets take a close look at the costs, product offerings, durability, and warranties of these two siding manufacturers.
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Allura vs. Hardie
Fiber cement siding, regardless of the manufacturer, has a range of benefits over other siding materials. Out of all top house siding materials, fiber cement is proven to provide the best return on investment (ROI) for the past seven years in a row.
Remodeling Magazine evaluated 35 home improvement projects and found that adding fiber cement siding provided an 84.3% ROI.
Fiber cement siding has a Class A fire-resistant rating. It also holds up better in hurricanes, hail storms, wildfires and against bug infestations compared to vinyl or wood siding. Installation is much easier and quicker than stone or brick.
Here’s what you should know about Allura and James Hardie siding before you choose one of these manufacturers.
Both companies make Traditional, wood-grain Lap Siding and Smooth Lap siding. Their Lap Siding products comes in the same sizes: 12’ long boards with width options of 5- ¼”, 6- ¼”, 6- ¼”, 8- ¼”, 9- ¼” and 12”.
Allura’s lap siding boards are available primed and ready for your choice of paint once installed or available pre-painted in a range of colors and stains. Allura’s colors are applied using their patented, innovative coloring system.
This ensures a smooth application of paint or stain with a gorgeous matte finish. It seals in color to make it resistant to weather. The paint and durability of a baked-on factory finish cannot be matched when painting is done after installation.
Allura siding offers a 15-year warranty on its finish, along with their 50-year warranty on the physical materials. A third lap style, is the Allura 7” Perfection Shingle. These are 12’ boards with a 7” exposure that look like individual shingles.
Allura has more color options that are pre-painted versus primed only.
James Hardie’s primed boards are always available, but their pre-painted board availability can be limited and needs special ordering due to limited in stock colors. They offer 15 color choices compared to Allura’s 25 colors.
One of Allura’s most significant advantages is that it has a wide range of additional products with different finishes to allow your product to stand out.
If you choose Allura siding, you have accent shingles, trim and soffits in more than 30 matching, pre-painted colors and stains.
The trim comes in 12’ long boards of varying widths. They are smooth on one side and have a wood-grain texture on the other so they can be used in the way that best compliment your house.
There is also a special trim product called “Tundra Trim” which uses a patented mineral-based composite technology, instead of fiber cement, which makes it much lighter but very strong.
The design flexibility of Allura trim allows you to choose a Board-and-Batten style siding by combining trim pieces over smooth panels.
James Hardie offers its HardieTrim boards to accentuate corners, columns, fascia, doors and windows. The trim is available in six options with three in pre-painted colors and three primed only.
Allura Soffits are integral to the rafters of a roof and serve important functions to keep the air circulating properly through your attic. Your roof, oftentimes extends over the walls of your home.
The underside of the overhand is known as the soffit. Soffit products add a finished appearance. Allura has five Soffit styles that come in a wide range of colors and stains so you can coordinate your siding and trim.
Traditional Ventilated Soffits and Smooth Ventilated Soffits; Beadboard Soffits, and Traditional and Smooth Soffits (without the perforations found in the ventilated soffits).
James Hardie Soffits are also available in Smooth or Traditional (wood-grain) finishes plus a Beaded Porch Soffit panel. Hardie soffits are available in two, pre-painted colors or primed for paint post-installation.
Allura has six accent shingle sizes to choose from: 5” and 7” Straight Edge; 7” Shake Select; 8” Individual Shakes; Half-Rounds, and Octagons. All are available in their full range of 25 pre-painted colors and 5 stains.
The Shakes come in either a staggered or straight edge which are available primed and ready to paint. The shake come in two different textures: Traditional Cedar or Combed.
Allura offers free use of their Visualizer technology which allows you to view your siding and color options online first to help you feel confident in your choice.
The 7” Shake Select line, is a perfect choice for homeowners who wan the look of a New England wood shake exterior. The pattern is randomized so you can’t tell when the pattern repeats.
This gives it a realistic wood look that you cannot get from James Hardie shakes which have consistent, repeating patterns.
When it comes to shingle options, James Hardie has four sizes in their full range of 15 color options. There are 7” straight edge, 7” staggered edge, 7” individual shingles and Half-Rounds shapes.
Allura’s advanced formula makes for a more durable finish that James Hardie siding. Allura is specially formulated to provide superior protection against weather including hail.
Each piece of Allura siding is sealed for maximum resistance to inclement weather and exterior impact. The sealant actually penetrates the boards and bonds with the fiber cement material.
Moreover, Allura is a more durable siding than HardiePlank, because its significantly thicker. However, because its so thick and heavy you need to make sure that its carried and installed with proper support, otherwise it can crack and break.
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Cost Of Allura vs Hardie
As always, for most homeowners cost is a deciding factors when comparing to similar siding brands.
Here is a closer look at the price differences between James Hardie and Allura siding.
Overall, Hardie Plank siding is about $0.50-0.80 per square foot cheaper than Allura.
This is a very minor cost difference, and you should consider other factors when deciding between these two top manufacturers.
|Allura Siding Cost Per Sq.Ft.||James Hardie Siding Cost Per Sq.Ft.|
|Planks and Panels||$1.55 – 2.75||$1.50 -2.50|
|Shingles and Shakes||$3.50 – 5.65||$3 – 5|
|Soffits and Accessories||$2.45 – 3.85||$1.75 – 3.50|
|Average cost of install (labor and materials)||$4.20 – 6.50||$3.35 – 5.85|
James Hardie vs Allura Warranty
Hardie Plank siding is still produced in most the same way since it was first formulated in the 1980s.
It uses a wood pulp slurry mix with Portland cement to manufacture molded planks. A mix of silica and sand are added to keep the boards stabilized. James Hardie offers a 30-year warranty.
Allura uses cellulose fibers, sand, silica and Portland cement and offers an industry-leading 50-year warranty on their siding.
The finish on Allura’s pre-painted siding is also guaranteed for 15 years, up to 3 times longer than you can expect a typical on-site paint job to last.
Overall, its clear that Allura offers a superior warranty on its siding products compared to James Hardie.
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