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    Home | Our Blog | The Pros and Cons of Board and Batten Siding

    The Pros and Cons of Board and Batten Siding

    Reviewed by Tomas Kalkys. President.
    Qualifications: More than 20 years of experience in residential and commercial exterior remodeling.
    Founding farther of Legacy Service.
    Written by LegacyUSA Team

    posted on Dec 5, 2019

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    If you’re not familiar with building home exteriors, you might not even realize that there are many different styles of siding. Some of the most popular include horizontal panels, traditional lap, dutch lap, board and batten, and shakes. In this blog, we’re going to cover board and batten. We’re going to explain the pros and cons of board and batten siding, why people choose this style for their home, and the different types of material you can choose with it.

    Pros and Cons of Board and Batten Siding

    At Legacy Service, we’re all about making your home exterior the best it can possibly be. Whether you’re in need of new roofing, siding, windows, gutters, or skylights, we’re here for you. Siding replacement is the perfect opportunity to explore your home’s potential and make a stunning transformation. We provide the best options you can find, including but not limited to fiber cement by James Hardie, classic wood, long-lasting PVC, and affordable vinyl. We treat our customers as our guides. No matter what you want for your home, we’ll make it a reality. If you’re interested in board and batten for your home, please feel free to contact us at 215-798-9790 or fill out a contact form at

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    About Board and Batten Siding

    Board and batten is currently one of the most popular types in the United States. As a basic yet uniquely attractive type of siding, it’s commonly used on barns across America, also granting it the name “barn siding.”

    Board and batten siding uses strips of narrow wood called battens. These battens are alternated with wider boards, which creates a layered effect on your home. Its style makes it weathertight and resistant to harsh winds. Many people also appreciate the unique look of board and batten, which is why it’s oftentimes chosen over other types. Having been in demand for hundreds of years, board and batten has proven its worth, evolved over time, and won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.

    Board and Batten Siding

    Pros of Board and Batten Siding

    Homeowners choose board and batten siding over other types for many reasons. In this section, we’re going to highlight its top advantages. If these are the pros you’re looking for, then you might want to get board and batten for your home! The advantages include:

    It’s long-lasting – When installed and taken care of properly, board and batten can last for many years if not decades. This long-lasting siding is perfect if you want to replace it as little as possible.

    It’s visually-appealing – Just because the siding is durable doesn’t mean it’s unattractive. Board and batten is visually appealing for everyone, from the homeowners themselves to the people passing by on the street. Your neighbors will be pleased to look out of their windows and see your home next to them.

    It increases curb appeal – Are you thinking about selling your home sometime in the future? If so, board and batten can significantly increase your home’s curb appeal, helping it sell faster and for a higher price.

    It’s versatile – This siding is one of the most versatile types. It can be used successfully in a wide variety of applications. The boards can be installed either vertically, horizontally, or both, with the battens placed in between the boards. And since they use individual pieces, it’s easy to replace them, which helps keep maintenance costs down.

    If you choose vinyl as your material for board and batten siding, you’ll have the benefit of a beautiful appearance without having to deal with all the maintenance.

    Board and Batten Siding Problems

    Although there aren’t many, this type of siding does have a few disadvantages. However, the board and batten cladding problems are ones that can be overlooked, depending on your budget and how quickly you need the siding installed. The cons include:

    It can take a long time to install – There is a high number of board and battens that need to be installed with this type of siding, which is why you’ll need to make sure it’s properly installed. This process can take longer than the usual siding installation process, especially if it’s done right the first time.

    It can be expensive – Board and batten can also be more expensive than other styles, mainly because of the extensive installation process. The installation needs to be completed very carefully, which causes it to take longer than other types of siding.

    If you don’t mind a slightly higher price than some types of siding and a little bit longer time of installation, board and batten may be the right type for you.

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    Different Types of Material

    Once you decide which style of siding you want: board and batten, dutch lap, clapboard, beaded, shake, or something else entirely, you’ll have to choose the material to use. For board and batten, you have four main options. They include:

    Vinyl – Vinyl is typically the cheapest of the materials. It’s still beautiful and highly durable, though, which makes it one of the most popular options for homeowners who are looking to get new siding.

    Fiber cement – Fiber cement is another popular siding option because it’s long-lasting, safe, durable, and versatile as well as weather and fire-resistant. It can even be designed to look like other types of siding material, including wood. Compared to wood and steel, fiber cement is cheaper to install. At Legacy Service, we offer only the best fiber cement siding, which is manufactured by James Hardie.

    Steel – Although steel is usually more expensive than the other options, it’s one of the longest-lasting and most durable, even when it comes to storm damage. When used for board and batten, steel can come in different colors and be styled to look like wood.

    Wood – Wood siding is the cream of the crop in regards to beauty, especially if you’re going for a natural, rustic look. However, it can be susceptible to rot, decay, and disease, especially if termites or moisture find a way in.

    Money Savings

    Board and Batten Siding Costs

    Is board and batten siding expensive? That’s what most homeowners ask us before they make any decisions. Board and batten siding costs different for every customer, depending on the size of your house and the material you choose. If you choose vinyl, you’ll most likely be paying between $2 and $7 per square foot, depending on whether it’s insulated or non-insulated as well as the quality or thickness you choose. During your consultation, we’ll calculate a price range, depending on your wants and needs. Board and batten is currently a very popular style of siding for many reasons. You definitely will not regret it if you choose it for your home.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Board and Batten Siding

    Here are the questions our team is most frequently asked about board and batten exterior siding.

    Is board and batten siding more expensive?

    Board and batten siding can be more expensive than other styles. This is due to the extensive installation process, which needs to be done more carefully because of the alternating board sizes. Many people believe the cost is worth it because it allows for natural expansion and contraction, which can reduce cracking and other types of deterioration.

    What material is used for board and batten siding?

    The materials you can choose from for board and batten siding include wood, vinyl, steel, and fiber cement. Each has its own pros and cons. Wood is typically for homeowners who want a rustic look. Vinyl is affordable and durable. Steel provides excellent durability. And fiber cement safe, durable, versatile, and long-lasting. Contact your local siding company to see which would be the best fit for you.

    Is board and batten siding good?

    Of course, it is! Board and batten siding has been increasing in popularity over recent years because it’s not only beautiful and unique-looking, but it’s also highly durable and versatile. If it’s maintained properly, this style of siding can last for decades.

    Is board and batten the same as Hardie Board?

    No, they’re not the same. Board and batten is the style of siding while Hardie Board is the material manufactured by James Hardie. Hardie Board is a type of fiber cement siding, and it can be used for board and batten. If you’re interested in replacing the siding on your home, schedule an appointment with our team.

    Does board and batten add value?

    Board and batten siding not only adds a unique appearance to your home but also helps increase its value. It’s one of the ways to add charm and character to your home while giving it a custom, “high-end” look. This versatile style of siding even functions as an excellent insulator with a moisture barrier that helps prevent mold problems and other issues.

    Does board and batten need to be caulked?

    Board and batten siding should be caulked. Caulking helps make your board and batten siding look more professional. It also fills the gaps between the wall and board edges to help improve the siding’s durability and increase its lifespan.

    Does board and batten siding leak?

    If it’s properly installed, board and batten siding will not leak. Caulking is also designed to help prevent leaks by filling any gaps between the walls and board edges.

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    Can you use pine for board and batten siding?

    Yes, pine is one of the wood options you can choose from for board and batten siding. When properly sealed, painted, or stained, this type of siding can last for about 20-30 years. It provides your home with a beautiful, classic appearance.

    How long does board and batten last?

    The material you choose will have an effect on the lifespan of your board and batten siding, but on average, you can expect this style to last about 25 years, especially if you choose vinyl, which is the most popular type. It may last longer than that if you choose a more durable material like fiber cement.

    Is board and batten still in style?

    Board and batten siding offers a timeless and unique appearance that may never go out of style. Whether you love the rustic, farmhouse style or would rather your home look more modern, board and batten is a great choice! It’s just that versatile.

    What is the spacing on board and batten siding?

    For board and batten siding, it’s essential for the boards to be spaced and installed correctly. In most cases, the battens, which are the strips of narrow wood, should be spaced anywhere between 12” and 24” apart. Consult a professional if you need help deciding how yours should be spaced.

    Does board and batten come in vinyl?

    Yes, vinyl is one of the most popular types of material for board and batten siding. Resistant to harsh weather conditions, vinyl is durable, low-maintenance, and sustainable for years (even decades) to come. It also comes in a selection of beautiful colors to match the exterior of any home.

    Can you do board and batten on textured walls?

    Yes, you can install board and batten siding on textured walls! In fact, some homeowners use board and batten to cover textured walls that they don’t want to sand down. This style adds charm and character to a home, helping it feel more elegant and refined. If you’d like to complete the project yourself, you can find various tutorials online. If you’d prefer to hire a professional, get in touch with your local siding company.

    How thick should board and batten be?

    The thickness of board and batten siding will differ depending on what the contractor suggests for the home and what the homeowner chooses. In most cases though, the wider boards should be between 12 and 14 inches thick, and the thinner strips should be between 1 and 3 inches.

    What size boards do you use for board and batten?

    The size of the boards will usually depend on the size of the wall and what you choose from the suggestions of the contractor. The most common arrangements use 1×10 boards and either 1×2 or 1×3 battens. Homeowners can also choose 1×8 or 1×12 boards and 1×4 battens.

    Does board and batten make a room look smaller?

    No, it’s actually the opposite. Board and batten opens up a room and makes it look bigger! Many people use it to make a small entryway or room appear larger. This siding and paneling style places narrow strips of wood over the joints of wide boards for a layered effect.

    What kind of wood is used for board and batten?

    The most common kinds of wood used for board and batten siding include:

    • Cedar
    • Pine
    • Redwood
    • White Oak
    • Locust
    • Hemlock
    • Cyprus
    • Engineered wood

    The kind of wood you choose is up to you. Other popular options are vinyl and fiber cement. Consult with your local siding professionals to see what they suggest for your home.

    Can you use plywood for board and batten siding?

    Yes, the board and batten can be installed onto OSB sheathing or solid plywood. In fact, plywood is a favored budget choice for any style of siding. It provides a big structural upgrade for walls at an affordable price.

    How do you prepare board and batten for painting?

    There are a few steps you should take to prepare to paint your board and batten siding. They include:

    1. Clean the wood and remove any debris from it.
    2. Make sure the battens and boards are tight.
    3. Apply the primer coat with a paintbrush or paint sprayer.
    4. Caulk the edges of the battens.
    5. Apply the top coat of paint with a paint sprayer. When the paint dries, add an extra coat to finish the job.

    Is board and batten cheaper than vinyl siding?

    No, since board and batten siding is made of wood and relatively complex to install, it’s typically more expensive than horizontal vinyl siding. Board and batten can range anywhere between $5 and $12 per square foot while horizontal vinyl siding usually costs between $2 and $6 per square foot. Remember that price can differ depending on several factors, so it’s best to check with your local roofer to get a better idea of what it would cost for you.

    Let Us Know If You’re Interested in Board and Batten Siding!

    Board and batten is visually-appealing, affordable, and durable. What’s there to lose if you choose it for your home? We’ve already described the pros and cons, so if you’re still interested, please contact our team at Legacy Service. We have decades of experience when it comes to installing and replacing siding. Our team of experts will take your tastes and preferences to help you design the home exterior you’ve been dreaming of, even if you didn’t even realize it yourself.

    At Legacy Service, we offer a variety of siding types, including but not limited to wood and wood shake, vinyl, Everlast, and James Hardie. That’s only the beginning of what we have to offer for the exterior of your home. We also provide services for your roofing, windows, doors, and gutters. To learn more about replacing the siding on your house, whether it’s board and batten or another style, please feel free to give us a call at 215-798-9790 or contact us here.

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    Posted on Dec 5, 2019 in Roof

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