Installing external cladding to a property can protect exterior walls from inclement weather, improve your home’s insulation, and change the property’s aesthetics.
Choosing suitable cladding materials for your needs is important. Your budget will play a big part in your choice, but you should also consider the product’s appearance, durability, ease of installation, and longevity.
This article provides all the valuable information you need to make an informed decision. We will compare composite cladding with Red Western Cedar (wood cladding).
What Is Composite Cladding?
Composite cladding is a wood-plastic mix moulded into a specific shape. Ecoscape uses reclaimed, FSC-certified wood fibres and recycled plastic to create durable cladding boards. The boards are capped in durable HDPE to offer additional protection against degradation and rot.
This option offers consumers an environmentally-friendly way to carry out home renovations.
What Is Red Western Cedar?
Western red cedar is a softwood that comes in a range of natural colours. The durable material differs from other timber cladding as it contains natural oils to protect against decay.
This tree species is native to America’s Pacific Northwest and is typically available in various grades. The grading relates to visible knots in wood cladding boards, with products with more knots being less expensive.
Cowichan Gold Western Red Cedar is the rarest and most sought-after as it has a knot-free, vertical grain.
Differences Between Composite And Western Red Cedar Cladding
To determine which cladding material is best for your needs, it can help to compare the options available. Here are some of the most significant differences between composite and Western Red Cedar cladding.
Western Red Cedar cladding varies in price depending on the grade and supplier. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere between £105 to £175 per square metre.
Composite cladding available at Ecoscape is far more affordable, with the composite panel cladding range costing just £55.88 per square metre and the composite slatted collection costing £76.27 per square metre.
Ecoscape’s composite cladding consists of incredibly durable material that is weather-resistant and protects against impact, heat, and moisture. Ecoscape composite cladding comes with a 25-year product and a 25-year colour warranty.
Composite cladding does not warp, split, or splinter in warm weather as long as it is installed correctly.
Western Red Cedar is a durable softwood that contains natural chemicals that help to protect it from decay, shrinking, cupping, and warping.
Western Red Cedar is generally more waterproof than most timber cladding alternatives. However, it will age over time without treatment. Wood with a natural finish gradually ages and turns a silvery-grey if left untreated, but painting or staining the timber prevents this visible degradation.
Composite’s relatively maintenance-free benefits make it a popular choice in the UK. Over time, it can save homeowners money on treatments or repairs that some timber cladding will require.
Ecoscape composite cladding comes with a 25-year warranty, but you can expect your composite cladding to last longer in the right conditions with adequate care and upkeep.
Western Red Cedar has an incredible service life of between 40 and 60 years when properly maintained.
You will have to enquire with the manufacturer regarding warranties, as they typically will not be as long as 40 to 60 years.
Benefits Of Cladding Over Cedar
Ecoscape composite cladding has many excellent benefits that help set it apart from alternatives, including the excellent no-nails, secret fixing system that allows installers to create a flush finish without compromising the material’s quality.
While Western Red Cedar cladding fades over time and has limited colour choices, Ecoscape composite cladding offers a range of styles and shades with a colour guarantee of 25 years, thanks to the UV stability factor.
Ecoscape composite cladding includes high-quality accompanying trims and can be matched with other first-rate composite products, including composite decking, fencing, and balustrades.
Composite cladding can be a cost-effective way to clad a home, especially comparing costs with Western Red Cedar cladding. While this particular timber cladding option could last a while, Ecoscape composite cladding gives you the peace of mind of an extended guarantee without breaking the bank.
Plastics are used to make composite cladding, but Ecoscape favours recycled HDPE, helping to reduce waste and minimise new plastic production.
Another advantage of Ecoscape composite cladding is its versatility. It can be used in a number of applications and installed horizontally or vertically while also providing an attractive modern finish.
Ecoscape Composite Cladding
If you have decided that composite cladding is the way to go, the excellent range of Ecoscape composite cladding options should appeal to you.
Choose between slatted and panel composite boards for great finishes. Our slatted range is available in spiced oak, silver birch, and midnight colours, while the panel range includes spiced oak, Havana, silver birch, argent, flint, and midnight.
The panel boards weigh in at 2.23 kg per metre and measure 3,600 mm x 142 mm x 13 mm with a single-sided brushed finish.
The slatted composite panel range is slightly lighter, at 1.82 kg per metre, and is available in 2,500 mm / 3,600 mm x 121 mm x 25 mm and has a single-sided brushed finish.
If you are interested in getting a quote or a free product sample or would like further information, visit our composite cladding page or call now on 0845 9011 988.
Each individual product page also provides an extensive installation guide, further technical specifications, architect resources, and warranty information.
How do you clean cladding?
Composite cladding is a relatively maintenance-free material, but you should still clean it to keep it looking fresh and remove dirt and debris.
Never use harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaning tools on your cladding; cleaning once or twice a year is sufficient.
Use a soft bristle brush, warm water and liquid soap: this is usually enough to clean your cladding boards. Alternatively, you can safely use a jet washer by holding a fan jet at least 20 cm from the boards to minimise marks.
Is cladding difficult to install?
You will receive a complete installation guide, or check the manufacturer’s website for installation guides.
Ecoscape provides a comprehensive installation guide to help you install cladding safely and securely while adhering to the terms and conditions of your warranty.
How does an Ecoscape composite cladding warranty work?
You should always check the terms and conditions of the product warranty, as there will be important information about how you should store and install the materials so the warranty is not voided.
You will also have to ensure the care you provide the cladding does not go against the terms and conditions.
After installing your Ecoscape composite cladding boards, you will have 90 days to register the warranty on the site.
Ecoscape clip fixings must be used when securing the subframe when installing cladding boards and trims.
Can composite cladding warp?
Composite materials are subject to thermal expansion and contraction. This is why Ecoscape will provide suitable clips to hold them in place.
Screwing directly through composite cladding or decking boards inhibits the natural movement during thermal expansion and can cause the boards to warp around this area.
Choosing the right material for your home is essential as it will make a significant difference to the appearance of your property.
While wood cladding provides a great natural finish for more traditional properties, composite cladding can be a great modern alternative.
Both Western Red Cedar and composite cladding boards offer an outstanding level of weather resistance, but composite comes into its own with the lack of maintenance it requires.
Investing in paint, stain, or treatments and taking the time to apply them can be a frustrating task, and this is why composite is proving to be such a popular option.
Ecoscape offers an eco-friendly, attractive composite cladding option in various styles and colours to suit any home. Get in touch today if you are interested in finding out more about the full range.