Exterior wall cladding is an innovative way to not only protect your home against the elements and give it a new look, but it is also excellent to improve your property value!
There are a lot of options for exterior cladding available these days, starting with traditional timber cladding, to uPVC or aluminium and ending with the newest addition to the market: composite cladding.
But why should you choose composite cladding for your home exteriors instead of any of the other classic options? In this article, we will walk you through the properties and benefits of composite cladding and show you why you should choose our Ecoscape composite cladding boards as your home’s new “skin”.
What is Composite Cladding?
Composite cladding is a more contemporary and low-maintenance alternative to cladding products.
As the name already suggests, it is made of a composition of polyethene from recycled plastics and reclaimed FSC-certified wood fibres, which have been processed and bound under lots of pressure, making for a solid and stable material in general.
Our composite cladding comes in a wide range of colours and is protected by a durable and impermeable polymer layer that protects the boards against external impacts. Thanks to this variety, you can be assured of finding a composite cladding finish that will suit a more traditional home as well as a modern look.
Because of its versatility for outdoor living spaces, it has become a popular choice compared to alternative cladding products such as timber or aluminium.
The Benefits of Composite Cladding
Composite is not only a stylish alternative to other materials, but it also comes with a bunch of more benefits than other cladding materials.
Our composite cladding was designed to withstand a multitude of external influences, such as weather, extreme temperatures, moisture and even insects.
Composite keeps its structure throughout any weather condition and only expands minimally due to extremely hot temperatures. This property, the extreme non-permeable outer layer that makes the material basically:
- fade resistant
- water resistant
- weather resistant
- warping resistant
- stain resistant
- mould and rot resistant
If taken care of appropriately, your composite cladding will last you several decades and comes with a 20 to 25-year warranty, depending on which Ecoscape range you choose.
This brings us to the point of caring for your composite cladding. Unlike wood, this material does not need to be sanded or treated with sealer or paint ever so often. Instead, use some mild soap, warm water and some elbow grease, or a pressure cleaner if you have one, and clean your cladding if you see any noticeable dirt or stains on it.
This will likely happen once or twice a year, depending on the weather conditions you are exposing your composite cladding to.
Apart from this, this material basically requires not much else from you in order to stay in good shape.
Composite cladding is very low-maintenance, so you won’t need to use maintenance products to keep it looking good, which makes it quite sustainable in itself, apart from the long-lasting warranty.
On top of that, Ecoscape’s composite is made of 95% recycled materials, which are sourced from FSC-certified wood fibres and polyethene from plastic bottles and bags. This means that almost zero new resources are required in the manufacturing process of composite cladding.
Wood cladding, on the other hand, might be considered a renewable resource but often comes from monoculture forests that harm the environment and biodiversity. Plus, timber usually travels across the globe to eventually end up installed on the walls of a UK home.
Contemporary Design & Versatility
Thanks to the wide range of colours and finishes that are currently available for our Ecoscape composite cladding ranges, you can give your home the look you desire, whether that is a more contemporary look or a traditional timber cladding-inspired finish such as our Havana boards.
But it’s not just the versatility in the design that makes composite cladding a worthwhile alternative to timber or uPVC. Your composite exterior cladding can be used for a plethora of building projects, such as:
- Garden building and sunrooms
- Screen fencing
- Garden design features
- Commercial buildings
- Hiding unsightly walls
Another factor that speaks for composite exterior cladding, or any composite materials for that matter, is how easy you can install it yourself.
Our composite cladding products always come with the right materials that you will require for your installation. There will be no need to pre-drill holes or use your own screws, as our composite materials have their own mechanisms to be mounted to your walls safely and reliably.
With a little bit of DIY knowledge, you can get your exterior cladding installed by yourself. However, our excellent customer service team will be happy to help you with the process just as well.
As there is no need to drill into our cladding boards, they come with more structural integrity than other materials, such as timber or plastic cladding boards.
On top of that, the extreme durability will protect your house for years to come and prevent the elements from having a go at your exterior walls, thus supporting your home’s structural integrity.
Alternative Cladding Products
Here is a quick overview of the most popular alternatives on the market to give you a better understanding of why composite cladding is the better option in any case.
Timber Cladding Boards
There is no doubt that wood is easily one of the most popular and versatile building products out there, and it has been used for cladding houses for years.
It does come, however, with a relatively high maintenance level as it needs to be treated repeatedly to be resistant to a number of exterior influences. Even then, you have no guarantee that your wood cladding is not going to rot or mould.
On top of that, while most timber manufacturers these days source from FSC-certified forests, the wood still needs to travel long distances and therefore has a relatively high carbon footprint. Needless to say that the constant treatment with other resources such as colour or resin also requires a lot of resources that aren’t necessarily eco-friendly.
Lastly, wood just doesn’t last as long as composite cladding can. While composite can stay with you for almost 50 years, you will likely have to replace your wood cladding after about 20 years time.
This also means that while composite cladding might be slightly more costly when purchasing it, you won’t have to buy new cladding any time soon, therefore saving money in the long run.
Brick and mortar are potentially the most commonly used materials when it comes to exterior cladding projects, and you will not struggle to find contractors that are well-versed in installing this exterior cladding option. In fact, you might even be able to DIY this option.
Bricks can last a lifetime and usually do not require painting, which is quite an advantage. But they might not always be as aesthetic or versatile as composite cladding can be.
While brick is usually sourced from the natural world, i.e. clay soil, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it is environmentally friendly. Making bricks from clay in kilns takes large amounts of energy, which ends up increasing the carbon footprint of these materials enormously.
On top of that, mortar includes cement, which has a relatively high carbon footprint as well and is almost impossible to reuse or recycle.
Polyvinyl chloride is an exterior cladding with lots of versatility as it can resemble a lot of wood finishes. Similar to composite exterior cladding, it is basically maintenance-free, with the occasional cleaning session required.
It can sometimes be relatively difficult to recycle UPVC; on top of that, it is known to fade quite a bit after installation and can also warp if exposed to extreme weather. Therefore it is not nearly as durable as composite.
What is FSC-certified wood?
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a non-profit organisation which certifies the sustainability, i.e. ethical production of wood. This means that the wood will be harvested from forests which have been managed sustainably and are socially and economically responsible and beneficial.
What colours does composite cladding come in?
Ecoscape currently offers two contemporary ranges which offer the following colours (which range from black to light grey all the way to a wood-inspired finish):
- Silver Birch
- Spiced Oak
Is composite exterior cladding any good for insulation?
Yes, it definitely is.
Adding an extra layer to your exterior walls has added benefits, such as preserving the temperature in your home. This applies to both heat as well as cool air and will be beneficial for either summer or winter.
Installing composite cladding means that you will not have to put your heat on the highest level this winter and expect an insanely high energy bill, as the composite will keep the warmth inside your home and you nice and snug inside.
The same goes for another sweltering UK summer, where you will not have to let your fan or AC run for hours on end, as the cladding also prevents the cool air from escaping from your house and prevents the extreme heat from getting inside!
Thanks to the water and weather resistance as well as many other durable properties, while also being eco-friendly. Ecoscape’s aesthetically pleasing new composite materials in various colours will revolutionise the cladding market and get your house up to speed when it comes to insulation as well as style.
There are clearly a number of reasons why you should be considering choosing composite exterior cladding instead of any other material.
Get yourself the best alternative to cladding on the UK market and reap the many benefits of composite tomorrow, thanks to our next-day delivery promise. Or, if you’re not sure what colour will look best on your home, order yourself some of our free samples and compare the appearance yourself!