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James Hardie vs SmartSide Siding: comparing your options

If your home needs new siding, comparing James Hardie and SmartSide® will give you a broader range of options

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Siding provides your home with protection from the elements while also creating an attractive look that increases the house's curbside appeal. While traditional wood and vinyl siding remain common,  James Hardie and SmartSide® siding offer plenty of alternative options for both the appearance of the siding and the materials used. Conducting a James Hardie vs. SmartSide® comparison will prove helpful as you make your final decision.

James Hardie

James Hardie Companies is an international company with its roots in the late 1800’s. James Hardie left his ancestral home in Scotland and traveled around the world to Melbourne, Australia. What started as an hide and tanning company, branched out into new technologies as the nation of Australia grew. In the 1950’s, Hardie pioneered cement composite building materials and helped to develop many of the technologies that we use today on the exteriors of our homes. Now, based in Amsterdam, with plants around the world, James Hardie is one of the most respected building materials companies in existence.

James Hardie offers fiber cement siding, which is made by combining cellulose fibers with sand and cement to create the planks and panels used on the outside of homes. This material is durable and fire resistant and james hardie siding for your homerequires little maintenance. It can also be easily painted both before and after installation. Since the fiber cement siding does not flex, paint coverage tends to last longer than it would on other siding types, reducing the overall cost of ownership by extending the period of time between paint jobs. It can also be crafted to resemble other house coverings, such as cedar shingles, giving you even more choices for the look of your home while still benefitting from the advantages of the material.

James Hardie siding comes in a number of styles and complementary product lines designed to accent and work with your new or improved siding:

  • HardiePlank®
  • HardieShingle®
  • HardiePanel®
  • HardieTrim®
  • HardieSoffit®
  • Artisan®

You can get more details on the James Haride line of siding products by clicking here.


SmartSide® is a product of Louisiana-Pacific and was designed as a direct response and replacement to past LP siding products that had some serious performance problems. SmartSide® siding is a composite wood creation smartside siding for your homethat combines wood strands or fibers with a compound of zinc borate to provide protection against termites and fungal decay. The combination is then strengthened with exterior-grade resins to help bond the wood together and form the siding planks. The resulting plank is lightweight and easier to install than fiber cement siding. The installation process is just like that of wood, and the planks are primed at the factory so that they're ready for painting right after installation.

For more detailed information regarding SmartSide® siding products, click here.

Comparing the two

While you conduct your James Hardie vs. SmartSide® siding comparison, you'll find that each material has some disadvantages. James Hardie siding is much heavier than other siding types and requires two or more workers to install a single plank, which increases labor costs. James Hardie siding can also be difficult to work with, as cutting the material creates silica dust that can be harmful if breathed in. SmartSide® siding is constructed of a wood base, which leaves it vulnerable to fire, either through combustion or through melting of the resin add-ons when exposed to high heat.

While you can save on siding costs by going the DIY route, both brands are best installed using a professional contractor. This will ensure that the home has a professional finish and that local building requirements are fully met once you install siding onto your home.

Comparing James Hardie vs. SmartSide® siding reveals pros and cons for the installation of either brand, but either one can provide adequate protection of your home against all but the most extreme weather conditions and raise your home's worth by increasing its curb appeal. Reply! can help you by connecting you with local siding professionals with experience in working with either product who are also eager to help you find the perfect siding solution for your home.

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