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What’s in a Siding? Hardie Board vs. Cedar Plank

What’s in a Siding? Hardie Board vs. Cedar Plank

What’s in a Siding? Hardie Board vs. Cedar Plank

With so many options available nowadays, you almost need a degree to decide on the right choice of siding for your home. Should you go manmade? Or, should you go natural? Ultimately, your choice may depend on a lot of different factors. However, the rising trend to return to something more natural like Cedar Plank has been gaining momentum, showing that it’s great for more than just closets.

Hardie Board plank is known as a cement board siding and has been around for quite some time. This affordable alternative to the real thing comes in a variety of colours and textures. Some of its more famous pros include: longevity, appearance, fire resistance and storm resistance. Cedar, on the other hand, as a low density softwood, can definitely give Hardie Plank a run for its money.

What’s in a Siding? Hardie Board vs. Cedar Plank

Hardie Board is known to be rot and insect resistant and can even handle salt spray from the ocean. But did you know that the natural oils in Cedar make it the best and cheapest form of pest control for your home. Not only is it a deterrent to rodents, it also keeps many species of insects and ants away. And although Hardie Board can be made to resemble Cedar, nothing beats the warm sweet smell of Cedar oil.

The noise abatement and insulating factors attributed to Cedar are a benefit when compared to many manmade materials. The open cell structure in Cedar means less heat is transported through the wood, keeping heat from escaping in the winter and the cool air from escaping in the summer. Similarly, as it reduces heat flow, it creates a natural acoustic barrier. And although some of the features we’ve mentioned already make Cedar a great choice as opposed to Hardie Board, most people choose Cedar Plank because of its style.

For many of us, our busy lifestyles often reduce our choices down to the subject of maintenance. There’s no point going all out if it’s going to take a lot of time and energy to maintain. Both Hardie Board and Cedar Plank can be painted a desired colour, although most who choose Cedar prefer it in its natural state with a great stain. And as Cedar ages, it adds great character to your home. And because of its natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, you can leave it untreated without worry of excess warping, rotting and cracking. So far, regardless of your choice, basic maintenance for either will be about the same in regards to cleaning and occasional re-painting or staining.

What’s in a Siding? Hardie Board vs. Cedar Plank

Honestly, nowadays, when it comes to getting the most value for your investment, it almost seems hard not to side (pun intended) with Cedar Plank. It’s a durable, natural product which has been used for hundreds, if not thousands of years in home construction. There is basic maintenance which is no different than many of the other options on the market, but you get the added natural benefits of cedar wood oil as an insect repellent, its natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, a natural acoustic barrier, and it smells great. But if you’re ever unsure as to the best product to choose, always seek out a professional for expert advice to ensure that you choose the right product for your needs.

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Western Red Cedar siding adorns countless West Coast buildings and homes. Specifically, cedar sidewall shingles remain an exceptional siding choice of builders for the exteriors of new and old projects. Providing an effortlessly timeless look for decades to come, buying FSC-certified Western Red Cedar shingles adds beauty and textural appeal everywhere they’re installed, making it ideal for coastal builds.

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Cedar sidewall shingles are an excellent choice for premium building and housing exteriors for a number of reasons. First, cedar is an inherently enduring softwood that remains resilient to the elements whether treated or untreated. Second, cedar shingles are further naturally resistant to mildew and rot, cracking and shrinkage. Third, cedar shingles enhance insulation qualities in the building or home, thereby increasing heat retention as well.

While applying a finish to the cedar shingle promotes a longer life overall, proper regular care may also extend the life of the material. Cedar sidewall shingles are for sale from Longhouse Specialty Forest Products in pre-stained, untreated, or even painted the colour of your choosing. The fact that untreated cedar siding is totally eco-friendly is a primary benefit as well. Cedar shingles come in No. 1 (Blue label) and in No. 2 (Red label) grades from Longhouse. They’re also all available in high grade clears.

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Pre-staining the cedar shingles preserves the grain and also gives the individual more design choices to choose from. Purchasing pre-stained cedar shingles from Longhouse also results in savings of roughly 65% versus paying a labourer to apply it at the building site.

Furthermore, with cedar sidewall shingles, builders choose the face that appeals the best to them and install it facing the outside of the wall. Alternatively, machine-grooved shingles are installed with the grooves facing the outside of the building.

Another appealing factor is the excellent selection of finishes obtainable with cedar siding. It can be left untreated in its natural state, or it can be covered with a clear coat by Longhouse. It can also be painted and comes available in red or white. Many builders choose untreated cedar sidewall shingles for a greener, cleaner environment.

Installation is also straight forward. Basic materials that builders require are stainless steel nails or staples and latex caulking.

Genuine FSC certified cedar shingles originate in naturally distinctive sizes, grains, and colours. This attractive design cannot be replicated with other sidewall options. Builders know best and let the luxury and natural beauty of cedar sidewall shingles enhance their coastal builds. For more details, contact Brian Jenkins, Owner/Operator at Longhouse toll-free at 1-800-811-2010.

Why Builders on the West Coast Love Cedar Sidewall Shingles

Building Stronger With Kiln Dried Douglas Fir

Building Stronger With Kiln Dried Douglas Fir

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

Native to the Pacific Northwest, Douglas Fir is one of the strongest North American softwoods. Its qualities make it one of the first choice for contractors to use for such things as framing for buildings, bridges and railroad ties as its ideal for structures that need to withstand high winds or earthquakes. Its stiffness also makes it great for flooring. Some woods can shrink, crack or twist as moisture levels change, what makes Douglas Fir such a popular choice is that it retains its size and shape as it seasons.

Building Stronger With Kiln Dried Douglas Fir

The Kiln Drying process subjects the Douglas Fir to drying cycles while maintaining consistent temperature and humidity levels. This drying process helps to further increase stability, reduce checking and maximize equalization within the wood. Traditional air drying of wood can take days, Kiln Drying can be done a lot quicker, making it more cost effective. Bugs and insects are also killed during the drying process.

Here at Longhouse, we use coastal Douglas Fir products from sustainably sourced old growth Vancouver Island Douglas Fir to manufacture structural products such as timbers and beams perfect for roof decking and flooring. The tough nature of Kiln Dried Douglas Fir make it the perfect material for high traffic residential and commercial applications. Available in many head turning finishes, and also fire treated with our class A non-toxic retardant for commercial properties. The wide plank solid flooring adds a bold statement to any room.

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products is proud to be FSC® certified by the Rainforest Alliance since 2007. FSC® is the only Forest certification system that environmental groups like Greenpeace, The sierra club and WWF support. Longhouse supports sound forest practices and effective management of forest resources for future generations to enjoy.

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

It’s easy to see why cedar remains a popular siding choice among Canadians, in spite of the higher costs. Cedar is extremely durable, and its natural preservatives guard from the ravages of rot, decay and insects. Longhouse manufactures an excellent selection of custom cedar siding profiles. Each has its own features, so it’s good to know a little about them before making an informed choice for a project.


Commonly known as ‘clapboard’ siding, this is possibly the most popular wood siding. Cedar bevel siding comes available in any width and is installed horizontally.

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

Bevel siding is manufactured by re-sawing lumber at an angle to make thicker pieces on one edge, resulting in saw textured pieces on one side. The other side can be smooth or saw textured depending on both cedar grade and customer preference. Due to its thickness, it provides a beautiful shadow line along the building exterior.

Western Red Cedar bevel siding comes available in solid wood or finger-joined. This style is also available in clear and knotty grades.


Channel, or ‘lap’ cedar siding, is also popular with customers desiring a rustic look. This type of siding comes with flexible installation options: vertical, horizontal, and even diagonal.

Installing lap siding results in a shadow-line look, due to the fact that each board partially overlaps the next, thus creating a channel between boards. The overlap also provides additional protection from moisture.

Channel siding comes in a variety of patterns, widths, and thicknesses. It’s also offered in either clear or knotty grades, smooth or saw textured. An additional benefit of channel siding is that it expands and contracts under changing temperatures without cracking or warping.


Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

The most versatile siding choice by far, tongue and groove cedar siding is made when boards are manufactured to have a protruding tongue on one edge and a groove on the other, so that one board fits into the other. This is installed vertically, horizontally, and diagonally as well.

Tongue and groove custom siding is available in the same options as channel siding.


Board and batten siding is manufactured with wide clear or knotty Western Red Cedar and installed with battens (narrow boards) vertically over the joints. Any combination of board widths may be used to achieve the desired effect.

Furthermore, boards can be installed in reverse with the wider boards over the battens to create a deep channel effect. Although there are many choices, a typically appealing combination is 1×3” battens with 1×10” boards.

Popular Cedar Siding Profiles

Nothing compares to the warmth and natural beauty cedar siding provides. All cedar siding products are available in high grade clear stains and colours, which naturally affects costs. The customer can save when choosing ‘green’ or unseasoned Western Red Cedar siding.

Now you know the features of cedar siding. For further information, contact the seasoned professionals at Longhouse Specialty Forest Products in Parksville. They can help direct you to traditional or custom siding profiles perfect for you, all using FSC Certified Western Red Cedar.

Haida Skirl Lumber Available

haida scroll cedar for sale

Haida Skirl is a type of cut lumber that Longhouse Specialty Products sells from carefully selected Western Red & Yellow Cedar.
Red & Yellow cedar‘s characteristics protect against decay and

insects, ensure materials stay straight, lay flat, and provide an excellent base for paints and stains. Our in house quality coating systems can be used with confidence for a variety of pre stained siding, soffits/ fascia boards, timbers and decking.

Each piece of Haida’s Skirl is carefully inspected and we strive to provide a 100% tight tight knot grade. It is the only wavy edge siding that is manually produced by specially trained operators, as a result each piece is unique. The extra thickness of Haida Skirl siding provides a deeper shadow line which emphasizes and enhances Haida Skirl’s appearance.

Haida Skirl Features

  • Sawn textured, fine grained to accentuate the natural beauty inherent in Western Red & Yellow Cedar.
  • 100% tight knot
  • Available in Clear grades
  • Available raw or stained or painted

For more inspiration and more photos on how you can use Haida Skirl check out Pinterest here

douglas fir decking for sale

Tongue & Groove Roof Decking

douglas fir decking for sale

When you are building a new home or renovating and a ground level deck is not possible, sometimes opportunities exist above on the roof.

Many buildings have the potential of developing roof spaces such as converting your roof into a deck. Longhouse Specialty Products understands building constraints and sells quality cedar/ fir kiln dried tongue and groove lumber for the construction of roof decks.

Our T&G Roof Decking is available in Douglas Fir, Spruce / Western Red Cedar / & Yellow Cedar. Longhouse prides itself in providing consistent quality on every piece, saving our customers both time and money with great results.

All our cedar and fir lumber is available with or without stain or paint. Available thicknesses in 2”, 3”pre-drilled, 4”pre-drilled.

Contact Us for more information:

douglas fir decking for sale

Please send us information about what kind of lumber (fir or cedar) and stained or not stained as well as approximately how much you are looking for. We will do our best to get back to you asap.
Longhouse Specialty Forest Products

Welcome to Longhouse Specialty Forest Products Weekly Blog

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products

Here at Longhouse Specialty Forest Products we have a passion for the sustainably harvested coastal softwoods that we are proud to work with everyday.  With our new blog we hope to highlight the versatile, and innovative ways that costal softwoods are used in our local market, and around the world.  As the world turns to greener building materials, Vancouver Islands greatest natural resource is becoming more, and more in demand.  All of our products are sustainably harvested on local Vancouver Island woodlots, and all of our suppliers are members of the regulatory Vancouver Island woodlot association.  We believe that our little corner of the world produces the finest, and most beautiful softwoods, and we are proud to be ambassadors for these unique products.

We are truly a local company having been based in the Oceanside area for over 30 years, but the Jenkins family has been working in the forestry industry in this area for over 100 years.  We have seen many changes in the industry, and have worked hard to keep on top of the latest changes in our industry.

Feel free to post any questions or comments about coastal softwoods, pre-staining, or any other enquire below in the comments sections, we will do our best to respond to any and all questions.  Alternatively if your in the Parksville area, and would like to chat with owners Brian, and Moila Jenkins stop by our office (Open 8am-5pm Monday-Friday) .

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products OfficeCheck back very every week for info, pictures of projects, and more.  We look forward to sharing our passion for coastal softwood products with the world.

Office: 860 Sohier Rd Parksville, BC V9P 2B8