A durable exterior cladding material
For homeowners that want the look of wood but don’t want the hassles and costs associated with it, fiber-cement siding may be a satisfactory alternative. This product is available from several manufacturers, "Hardie Plank" being the largest, in a variety of textures that are said to provide the appearance of wood. Fiber-cement siding should be more durable than wood -- it is termite-resistant, water-resistant, non-combustible, and warranted to last 50 years.
Fiber-cement siding is composed of cement, sand, and cellulose fiber that has been autoclaved (cured with pressurized steam) to increase its strength and dimensional stability. The fiber is added as reinforcement to prevent cracking. The planks come in 5" to 12" widths and 5/16" and 7/16" thickness. The cost of fiber cement siding is more than vinyl and less than stucco and wood siding, making it an affordable and durable product. Because it is not susceptible to rot and infestation, fiber cement siding offers a long lasting alternative to typical exterior wall cladding.
Please also see insulative vinyl siding
Courtesy of PATH