Hardboard siding – also knows as pressboard, Masonite or hardboard siding – is a synthetic home siding product composed of a mixture of wood fibers, glues and resins, all bound together using heat and pressure.
This inexpensive siding option made it a widely popular choice for homeowners from the 1980s to the mid-1990s.
The Problems with Pressboard Siding
One problem with hardboard is that it tends to absorb water, making it deteriorate and shortening its lifespan. The results, especially with improper installation, can be board swelling, warping, buckling, blistering, rotting and softening, as well as mold development and insect infestation.
In 1994, a national class-action lawsuit was settled against some of the largest manufacturers of hardboard siding products. This stipulated that owners of properties constructed using hardboard siding from January 1, 1980 through January 15, 1998, depending on the manufacturer, could be reimbursed for any damages caused by the product. Following this, nearly all manufacturers stopped producing Masonite siding.
How Do I Tell if I Have Pressboard Siding?
The best way to determine what kind of siding your home has is to go to an unfinished area, such the attic or garage. Then pull back the tar paper from the back of the siding and see if there are any markings – either the manufacturer’s name or AHA (American Hardboard Association) code.
If you find the AHA code, you should search online to find the manufacturer of the siding, the siding material type and where the siding was produced. The best- selling brands of pressboard siding include IP’s Masonite Omniwood and LP’s Inner-Seal. Other pressboard siding brand manufacturers include Georgia Pacific (GP), ABTiCO or ABITIBI-PRICE, Weyerhaeuser, and Boise Cascade.
**If you are looking to replace your outdated Masonite siding, the best alternative is James Hardie fiber cement siding. Click here to learn all about Hardie siding.
Look for Damage
To decide whether your hardboard siding needs to be repaired or replaced, you should examine it for damage. If there is slight damage, with a few indications of water penetration (discoloration, rusted nails, and so on), you might be able to get away for a while with painting and/or caulking. But keep in mind that once water is absorbed, damage has been done and you will face greater problems in the future.
If there is more extensive damage – with Masonite siding that is rotting or swollen from water retention – then It is important that you get replacement siding. That water is not just harming your siding, but it could be wrecking the structure of your house.
Since hardboard siding is no longer made, you will have to find other kinds of siding replacement. And while you can get fiber-cement or vinyl replacement siding for the affected area, you would definitely notice a difference in siding thickness and texture.
The best bet is to replace all your siding with a product like James Harding Siding, consistently ranked as one of the best products on the market for its durability, good looks, ability to stand up to all kinds of weather conditions and easy maintenance.
To learn about this leading fiber-cement product and other siding replacement options, contact the professionals at Dependable Home Service for a free consultation.