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My 32 year old home needs painting and has a significant amount of dryrot. A couple of contractors have recommended vinyl, but I am discovering that there are many problems with that. One contractors prefers wood and would take off all of the current T-111 siding, wrap the house and put up new T-111 siding. The contractors prefering vinyl would put the vinyl over the existing siding after repairing visable dryrot. I am currently planning on replacing all of the windows with energy efficient vinyl windows (currently I have double pane aluminum) and replacing the doors with better fitting doors. Between T-111 plywood siding and fiber cement, is either one a winner for affordability, durability, and eco-friendly? Or is there another option entirely that I should consider? Could/should fiber cement siding be installed over the existing T-111 siding? (The contractors favoring vinyl siding would install it over the T-111 after repairing visable dry rot).
From a sustainability standpoint, vinyl or fiber cement siding would be a better choice. Not to mention that maintenance would be reduced as well. Moisture control becomes more important with a vinyl product depending on the current wall construction, that will need to be addressed. T-111 is more susceptible to water and insect damage and has a higher demand for yearly maintenance. Fiber cement has great durability and almost no susceptibility to water or insect damage. It will also hold paint for longer period of time compared to wood. It can also be installed over your existing siding, but it may be advised to remove it anyway and make sure you have and adequate moisture barrier, such as Tyvek to protect your structure. You will want to determine what look you prefer, but in terms of sustainability T-111 is not the best choice. I will concede that done properly, maintenance of wood is possible and can last a long time.