Certainteed Vinyl Siding

cindyinctNovember 12, 2012

I've seen the traditional vinyl siding, but Certainteed also carries siding with the insulation built right into it. I'm thinking that's a better option in that if something hits the house, the siding won't crack. My builder says if I use the traditional siding, he puts up 1/2" insulation first, but if I choose the siding with insulation built in, he doesn't. Does that make sense? Any thoughts on the siding with insulation built in?

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windowsonwashington

There are a bunch of manufacturers that put a foam backing to their panels.

If you are building a home, spend the money and wrap the entire exterior in a rigid foam (1-2") and then apply your foam backed siding. This increase in R-Value will pay for itself 5X over during the life of the home.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 12:05PM
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cindyinct

Its a remodel. Removing cedar shakes and old windows from a 1959 home.

Would the foam backing be the way to go based on my concerns? The contractor says that he can't wrap the house in the rigid foam if he's using the foam backed siding? Not sure why.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 12:10PM
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mmarse1

Probably because the windows will look recessed. Crane make the nicest/ best insulated panel in my opinion.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 3:53PM
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HomeSealed

I agree with both posters above. It CAN be done on any home, however your windows would probably look ridiculous with a couple inches of foam + the insulated siding. Crane makes a great panel...
I do appreciate the tactic that your contractor has taken however, in that many guys will sell the insulated panels based on energy savings which is BS. Hollow core siding with XPS insulation board will meet or beat the R value of the insulated panel depending on the thickness of the XPS. That said, I am a big proponent of the insulated panels for their rigidity and appearance. When done properly, it can result in a phenomenal appearance that is about as authentic and as close to cedar as you can get, and that includes fiber cement.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 9:21PM
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mmarse1

insulated siding has much tighter/ better seams than conventional siding with insulation board. why? there is structure that follows the countour of the siding which inhibits the siding from expanding and opening up. insulated siding is also much more impact resistant.
Crane insulated siding also is much more breathable than xps insulation board which means your home has a pathway for moisture to escape. conventional insulation board is not very breathable, in fact, the thicker you go, the less breathable it is. this can cause mold to form between your walls. this is another reason why putting up xps board in conjunction with an insulated panel is a bad idea.
lastly, insulated siding looks much more authentic and is a better contructed panel.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 8:53AM
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windowsonwashington

+1

The rigidity of the foam backed panels is the best benefit of them.

The R-Value claims are BS and greatly exaggerated.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 9:18AM
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HomeSealed

Sorry mmarse, that perm rating and being "breathable" stuff is a bunch of BS. How exactly is moisture going to escape past the plastic vapor barrier behind the drywall that is present on homes built over the last 20 yrs? That line of thinking is antiquated in terms of home performance, and inaccurate. We do not want our homes "breathing" through our walls. It is just "sales-guy" talk.
Like I said, I like the insulated siding for its appearance and rigidity, but lets just be honest here, conventional vinyl with XPS board can be as efficient or better depending on the thickness of the board. It also provides a more consistent r-value, as the thickness of the insulation does not vary, nor are there insulation gaps between panels that most installers leave. XPS insulation is a superior material to the EPS used on the foam backed material. We do more insulated than not, but again, it is primarily for appearance.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 10:27AM
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mmarse1

well it does breath. thick xps has the potential to absorb mosture. any wind driven rain that gets behind the siding will dry quicker with insulated siding. same with any moisture behind the walls

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:59AM
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HomeSealed

That is simply untrue. XPS (blue or pink foam board- extruded polystyrene for those browsing the thread) is far more dense than EPS (expanded polystyrene - like a coffee cup) so it insulates better given the same thickness, and is LESS absorbent, although neither really create much of an issue with retaining moisture. This is especially true with XPS that comes faced with a film that creates it's own WRB when the seams are taped (which makes a separate house wrap unnecessary).
I cringe at the fact that this thread is starting to sound like bickering, I just don't want people getting false info.
I'll reiterate: insulated siding is great stuff, just don't buy it based on efficiency or bogus scare tactics that regular siding will cause mold growth in your walls. It is typically high quality (.046 thickness ) and will offer a premium look and feel that you can't get from hollow core vinyl.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 5:23PM
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windowsonwashington

EPS = vapor open and lower R-Value.

XPS (depending on facer) = less vapor open and more R-Value per inch.

Proper thickness to the exterior depends on wall construction and climate.

EPS is great for insulated siding but XPS is the way to go on the walls in most cases.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:38PM
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cindyinct

Here's the latest from my contractor -

He suggests I get the vinyl siding with no insulation foam. With that, he plans on putting up a Tyvek barrier first, and then the siding. He says that most heat loss is through the windows and attic, and not through the walls. Not sure I believe that. So, there would be no insulation added to the house. I live in Connecticut, so it does get pretty cold here in the winter. The siding he suggested is CertainTeed or Mastic. I chose CertainTeed which is what I just put on my roof.

I would appreciate your thoughts on this approach.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 4:54PM
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HomeSealed

He is correct that you lose more through your attic than through the walls, however now is the time to improve the walls even if it is not necessarily the weak point. I would either install insulation board under the standard hollow siding, or go for the insulated siding with a housewrap. Another reason to install insulation board under the hollow siding is that it gives you a nice clean, flat surface to install the new siding on which can translate to a nicer finished product. Just my $.02.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 6:21PM
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cindyinct

I agree with the insulation, it wouldn't hurt. He said that you don't want the siding to stick out too far, thats why he only puts on the TyVek. So I'm kind of leaning towards the insulated siding.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 2:46PM
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HomeSealed

The projection of the insulated siding will be similar to a hollow core with 1/2" foam board or so. You could probably even go up to 3/4"-1" without it looking weird. It all depends what is coming off.
Either choice is good.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 3:29PM
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windowsonwashington

The insulated siding is a better option from the standpoint of maintaining its shape and structure.

I would always opt for foam backed and better yet, rigid foam sheathing.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 3:53PM
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cindyinct

If I dont get the foam backed siding, is just putting on TyVek and then the hollow siding good enough? With the hollow siding, should there be insulation as well?

    Bookmark   November 21, 2012 at 12:31PM
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mmarse1

cindy
the insulated siding has several advantages in my opinion.
first, it is much more realistic looking and the panel is wider( 6 or 7 inches) opposed to 4 inches. this means much less horizontal lines on the home ( a much cleaner look).
hollow backed siding has a large void even if insulation is under it. you can literally press down about an inch or more. what does that mean?
its not as impact resistance. also, as vi yl expands, the seams open and become unsightly. . insulated siding follows the exact shape of the siding leaving no void. also, no room for the seams to expand, the seams are much tighter and renders a much nicer look. it is when the seams open up that cause home owners to dislike the look of vinyl seams. further, wind can get between the seams and pull the siding loose.
finally, insulated siding comes in extended lengths which reduces the actual number of seams.
so Cindy, after hearing all of that, why wouldnt you want insulated siding?please answer,i would really like to know.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2012 at 2:15PM
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HomeSealed

I don't like that method. I would put up fanfold (1/4-3/8" foam board) at a bare minimum... I don't know anyone (at least not around here) that puts tyvek only under hollow siding.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2012 at 2:46PM
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windowsonwashington

+1

Fan fold is great to at least level the substrate out.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2012 at 1:52PM
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cindyinct

I am leaning towards the foam backed siding forall the reasons mmarsel mentions. With that, is using the TyVek alone the way to go, or would you put up fanfold (1/4-3/8" foam board) as well?

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 3:17PM
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HomeSealed

With the foam backed, the tyvek or another house wrap is sufficient. You can add thicker insulation board as Windows on Washington recommended earlier,as long as you don't mind the look of "inset" windows... the fanfold does not have much benefit with insulated siding though.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 4:48PM
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windowsonwashington

+1

Only need a WRB with foam back.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 10:10PM
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