top of page
  • Writer's picturebeau roberts

A Comparative Evaluation of Wood, James Hardie, and LP Smart Siding: Pros, Cons, & Maintenance

When it comes to selecting the right lap siding for your home, several factors need consideration, including durability, aesthetics, maintenance requirements, and longevity. In this article, we will evaluate three popular types of lap siding: wood, James Hardie siding, and LP Smart Siding, specifically focusing on their pros and cons, maintenance plans, and expected longevity in the climate of South Mississippi.

1. Wood Lap Siding:

Wood lap siding has been a traditional choice for many homeowners due to its natural beauty and charm. Here are the pros and cons of wood lap siding:


- Aesthetics: Wood siding offers a classic and timeless appearance, providing a warm and inviting look to any home.

- Customization: Wood can be easily cut and shaped to fit various architectural styles, allowing for unique designs.

- Eco-friendly: Wood is a renewable and biodegradable material, making it an environmentally conscious choice.


- Maintenance: Wood requires regular maintenance, including painting or staining, sealing, and periodic inspections for rot, insect infestations, and moisture damage.

- Durability: Wood is susceptible to rot, decay, and insect damage, especially in humid climates like South Mississippi.

- Cost: Wood lap siding can be more expensive upfront compared to other options.

Maintenance Plan:

To maintain wood lap siding in South Mississippi, we recommend the following maintenance plan:

- Regularly inspect and repair any cracks, splits, or damaged areas.

- Clean the siding annually using mild soap and water, followed by a thorough rinse.

- Repaint or restain the siding every 3-5 years, depending on the product and exposure to the elements.

- Ensure proper ventilation to prevent moisture buildup and reduce the risk of rot.

Expected Longevity:

With proper maintenance and care, wood lap siding can last approximately 20 to 30 years in South Mississippi. Regular inspections and prompt repairs are crucial to extending its lifespan.

2. James Hardie Lap Siding:

James Hardie lap siding, also known as fiber cement siding, has gained popularity for its durability and low-maintenance features. Let's explore its pros and cons:


- Durability: James Hardie siding is resistant to rot, warping, cracking, and insect damage.

- Fire and moisture resistance: Fiber cement siding is non-combustible and can withstand harsh weather conditions, making it suitable for the humid climate of South Mississippi.

- Low maintenance: This siding option requires minimal upkeep, primarily limited to occasional cleaning.


- Installation: Installing fiber cement siding can be more labor-intensive and time-consuming compared to other materials, requiring skilled professionals.

- Cost: James Hardie siding can be more expensive upfront than wood or LP Smart Siding.

Maintenance Plan:

For James Hardie lap siding, the maintenance plan in South Mississippi should include:

- Regularly inspecting for any cracks, chips, or loose boards and promptly addressing them.

- Cleaning the siding once or twice a year using a garden hose or a low-pressure power washer.

- Periodically checking caulking and sealants around windows and doors and reapplying if necessary.

Expected Longevity:

James Hardie lap siding is known for its durability and can last 30 to 50 years or more in the South Mississippi climate, given proper maintenance.

3. LP Smart Siding:

LP Smart Siding is an engineered wood product designed to replicate the look of traditional wood siding while offering improved durability. Here are the pros and cons:


- Aesthetics: LP Smart Siding closely resembles real wood, providing an authentic appearance.

- Durability: It offers resistance to impact, termites, rot, and decay


- Moisture susceptibility: LP Smart Siding can be prone to moisture-related issues if not properly installed or maintained.

- Cost: LP Smart Siding is typically more expensive than traditional wood lap siding.

Maintenance Plan:

To maintain LP Smart Siding in South Mississippi, consider the following maintenance plan:

- Regularly inspect the siding for any signs of damage, such as cracks or loose boards, and address them promptly.

- Clean the siding annually using a mild detergent and a soft-bristle brush or a low-pressure power washer.

- Ensure proper sealing around windows, doors, and other openings to prevent moisture infiltration.

Expected Longevity:

LP Smart Siding has a lifespan of approximately 20 to 30 years in South Mississippi, similar to wood lap siding. However, proper installation and maintenance are critical to maximizing its longevity.

Skilled Craftsman and Good Painter:

It's worth noting that the expertise of a skilled craftsman and a good painter can greatly enhance the appearance of any lap siding option. Regardless of the material chosen, professional installation and quality paintwork can significantly improve the overall aesthetics and curb appeal of your home.


Choosing the right lap siding for your home involves considering various factors. Wood lap siding offers natural beauty but requires regular maintenance. James Hardie lap siding provides durability and low maintenance but has higher upfront costs. LP Smart Siding replicates the look of wood with improved durability, but proper installation and maintenance are crucial.

In South Mississippi, where the climate can be humid, regular maintenance plans are essential for all three types of lap siding. With diligent upkeep and attention to repairs, wood lap siding can last 20 to 30 years, while James Hardie and LP Smart Siding can endure 30 to 50 years or more.

Remember, the expertise of a skilled craftsman and a good painter can transform the appearance of any siding material, enhancing the overall look of your home.

Beau Roberts. "A Comparative Evaluation of Wood, James Hardie, and LP Smart Siding: Pros, Cons, Maintenance, and Longevity in South Mississippi: Generated with the assistance of ChatGPT." June 10, 2023. Generated using OpenAI's ChatGPT.

12 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page