Vinyl Shake and Shingle Siding vs. Wood : The Case for Vinyl Shake Siding

You love the look of shake siding but you can’t decide if you should go with the real deal (wooden shake siding) or vinyl shake siding. Shake and shingle siding is great for decorating gables or even entire stretches of your home’s siding, but which version of shake siding should you choose?

vinyl shake siding vs wood shake siding

We’ve put together some facts about both wooden and vinyl shake siding to help you decide.

1. Vinyl Shake Siding Never Needs to be Painted

One of the biggest problems that homeowners face with cedar shake siding is the fact that it needs to be repainted every few years to keep its good looks. The costs of the labor involved to repaint can get quite high over the years and most find it a pain to have to either hire out the work or do it themselves.

Vinyl shake siding isn’t painted, but rather the color of the siding is formulated into the material itself. This means that you won’t ever need to paint or stain your siding again and your new vinyl shake siding will look great for decades rather than just a few years.

2. Vinyl is Much Less Expensive Than Wood Shakes

Another benefit of vinyl shakes is that they’re so much more affordable than wood shake and shingle siding. For example, you’d be looking at spending about $2-6 for vinyl shakes installed vs. over $10 for wood shingles. Vinyl shakes usually come in panels vs. individual shingles for wood so vinyl is also easier to install.

3. Vinyl Looks Just Like The Real Thing

Unless you go right up to the siding and lick it, you’re going to have a hard time differentiating between a quality vinyl shake siding and real wood shakes. Visually, they’re almost identical. Physically, the texture of vinyl shakes is very close to real wood shake siding.

4. Vinyl Shakes Are Available in Hundreds of Colors

This is an easy one. Wooden shake siding usually comes in about 3 or 4 colors max. Vinyl shake on the other hand comes in literally hundreds of colors since the color of the siding itself is baked in when the siding is produced at the factory.

Since shake siding is typically used as “accent” siding nowadays, it’s a good thing to have a large selection of colors to choose from to really set your home apart from your neighbors.

5. Vinyl is Weather Resistant

Wood siding can warp, rot, house an army of termites, peel and do many more things that are generally not good for your home. The reason why wood shakes can become such a problem is because they’re not weather resistant like vinyl shakes.

When water comes into contact with wooden siding, it permeates and can eventually lead to the problems mentioned above.

Vinyl siding is completely weather resistant, requires very little to zero maintenance over time and you won’t have to worry about the color fadingĀ or paint peeling off.

6. Vinyl Shake Siding Doesn’t Rot Like Wood

Let’s compare a home with wood shake siding and vinyl shake siding. They both look great at the start but how about if we fast-forward 20 years?

The fact is that any type of wood can rot and warp. Vinyl shake siding cannot rot and certainly can’t warp unless you’re living on the surface of Mars.

7. Vinyl Shakes Keep the Termites and Bugs Out

Termites and other pests just don’t like the taste of vinyl. Wood is another story. While cedar, most commonly used in shake siding and shingles, is somewhat resistant to termites, that doesn’t mean that it’s completely immune to these pests.

The best way to avoid termites getting into and destroying your siding? Don’t use wood!

Which Shake Siding is Better? Vinyl or Wood?

Well, we think that we’ve made a solid case for vinyl shake siding here but if you absolutely need the real deal, go for wood.

But be warned that not only is wood siding typically more expensive than vinyl siding, it’s also a pain to maintain and repaint.

If you haven’t done so already, make sure to check out our article about the pros and cons of wooden vs. vinyl siding and make an educated decision for yourself.

Vinyl shake siding (and all vinyl siding) is energy-efficient, affordable and very long-lasting. If you’re in the market for a siding renovation, make sure to get a quote from the siding experts at Feldco.

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