Composite Weatherboard Cladding Review

| 17th June 2016 | 0 Comments

Composite Weatherboard Cladding Review


Composite WeatherBoard Cladding on traditional and historic buildings

Composite Weatherboard Cladding


If you have looked at the projects I have completed you will see that I specialise in Listed buildings and those of an Historic nature.

Over the years I have learnt what are the correct and ‘right’ materials and techniques to be used when converting or refurbishing such buildings. When you hear someone say that’s ‘right‘ when talking about a particular material or method they are actually saying…


‘yep, the way you want to carry out the work is the way it would have been completed back in the day and as a result the character of the building will be unaffected or enhanced and more importantly, not damaged’.


I believe I have developed a sense of what is fundamentally wrong and what is right when repairing, refurbishing and converting traditional character and historic buildings.


Composite WeatherBoard Cladding is definitely the wrong material to use


I have no practical experience of using the material; I am sure it is easy to cut and fix and there is no painting to be done. However, when fixed to a building where traditionally timber boarding would be used,  in my opinion you are actually reducing the value of your home.

I know home owners are selecting the material as it is possibly cheaper to instal than traditional timber cladding and is meant to require minimal maintenance but, when they come to sell the property, the saving made is likely to be substantially less than the reduction in the property value.


Composite WeatherBoard Cladding just looks wrong on traditional buildings, even new build ones built in the traditional vernacular.


The composite boards are meant to be maintenance free as there is no painting required but, due to the textured fake wood grain surface, they appear to collect dirt and grime including green lychen (if not south facing) a lot quicker than smooth gloss painted timber boards.


Composite weatherboard cladding is not the only material I hate seeing (hate is not too stronger a word in this case).

Shiny Plastic UPVC WeatherBoard is even worse than Composite…then there is shiplap!! Shiplap is for sheds and ships.

I know I am sounding like an old curmudgeon here but just take a moment to look around when you drive through your local villages. There is a reason that timber/tile and brick was used. It looks really good. That is why house builders are trying (and failing) to copy the look. If they just spent a few more quid on the small details then they would look ‘right’


Here is a small sample of the right materials and methods to use on traditional and historic buildings:


Reclaimed clay tiles or if you have to, new clay but never smooth or concrete. Tiles need to have texture and a slight inconsistency in colour; also clay mellows down over time…concrete will never change.

Lime mortars -lime mortars breath and have more flexibility than cement based mortars. Old buildings move and need to breath.

Reclaimed bricks or if you have to new ones but make sure the size is right for the location and there is texture and small inconsistency in colour which would have been the case when they were fired back in the day.

Slate undercloak on the roof verges – roofing centers sell the fibre boards whcih are not right.

Cast iron rainwater goods – dont use plastic. The extra cost is absolutely worth it.

Re-point lime mortar walls with lime mortars – never ever use cement based mortars over lime. Lime allows the bricks to breath. Cement mortars will trap moisture especially in walls with no physical DPC.


That is it for now….moan over. In essence, just look around at what was traditionally used and copy it. Modern materials are to be used on modern houses.


Composite Weatherboard Cladding Review




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