Vertical Siding vs. Horizontal Siding: A Comprehensive Comparison

A Wisconsin home with a blue siding installation.

Siding Solutions: Vertical vs. Horizontal

Are you tired of the same old look of your home’s exterior?

Wondering which siding option will give your house a fresh, appealing look while also being functional?

In this guide, we’ll dive deep into the world of horizontal and vertical siding, exploring the pros and cons, costs, installation processes, and maintenance needs of each option.

This will help you make the best choice for your home in Ashwaubenon, WI.

By the end of this post, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to make an informed decision about your siding installation in Ashwaubenon, ensuring your home not only looks fantastic but also stands the test of time.

Let’s get started!

Which is Better: Vertical or Horizontal Siding?

A question homeowners often ask is, “Which is better: vertical or horizontal siding?”

The answer depends on various factors, including the type of structure, budget, maintenance preferences, and aesthetic goals.

Let’s delve into these considerations to help you make an informed choice for your Ashwaubenon home.

Overview of Vertical Siding

A blue home with a vertical siding style

What is Vertical Siding?

Vertical siding, also known as board and batten, involves planks running from top to bottom.

Historically used on barns and commercial buildings, it has gained popularity for residential use, especially for adding a modern, fresh look to homes.

Advantages of Vertical Siding

Vertical siding offers several benefits that can enhance your home’s curb appeal and functionality:

  • Unique Appearance: Vertical siding provides a distinctive look, making a striking statement that can set your home apart.

  • Trendiness: This style offers a contemporary aesthetic that appeals to many homeowners.

  • Easier Maintenance: Water runs down the planks easily, preventing buildup and making vertical siding simpler to clean.

  • Water Resistance: Properly installed vertical siding is less prone to water damage compared to horizontal siding.

Follow the link to discover more advantages of vertical siding for your home.

Disadvantages of Vertical Siding

Despite its benefits, vertical siding has some drawbacks:

  • Complex Installation: Vertical siding requires more steps, such as installing furring strips, making it more labor-intensive.

  • Higher Cost: Due to the complexity of installation, vertical siding projects tend to be more expensive.

  • Potential Impact on Resale Value: Some buyers may prefer the traditional look of horizontal siding, affecting the home’s marketability.

Types of Vertical Siding Materials

Vertical siding comes in a variety of materials, each with its own advantages:

  • Vinyl Siding: Cost-effective and available in many colors and styles, vinyl is a popular choice for its durability and low maintenance.

  • Wood: Offers a natural, rustic look but requires regular upkeep to maintain its appearance and protect it from moisture. Alternatively, you can opt for more robust engineered wood siding, made by manufacturers such as LP SmartSide.

  • Cedar is a premium option known for its beautiful aesthetics, though it requires more maintenance than other materials.

  • Fiber Cement: Durable, fire-resistant, and low-maintenance, fiber cement is a great long-term investment for your home’s exterior. Urban Exteriors specializes in installing high-quality James Hardie fiber cement siding.

Next, we’ll explore the features and benefits of horizontal siding, giving you a complete picture to help you decide which option is best for your home.

Overview of Horizontal Siding


What is Horizontal Siding?

Horizontal siding, also known as clapboard or lap siding, is installed with planks running side to side.

This traditional method has been the go-to choice for residential homes across the United States due to its classic appearance and ease of installation.

Advantages of Horizontal Siding

Horizontal siding comes with a range of benefits that make it a popular choice among homeowners:

  • Traditional Appearance: Offers a timeless, classic look that suits many architectural styles, from Colonial to Victorian.

  • Variety of Options: Available in numerous sizes, colors, and materials, allowing homeowners to customize their home’s exterior.

  • Cost-Effective: Generally less expensive to install due to quicker installation times and lower labor costs.

  • Easier Installation: Horizontal siding is simpler to install, making it a favorite among DIY enthusiasts and professional contractors alike.

Disadvantages of Horizontal Siding

While horizontal siding has many advantages, it also has some drawbacks:

  • Water Damage: More susceptible to water infiltration, which can lead to issues like rot, mold, and mildew if not properly maintained.

  • Cleaning Challenges: The horizontal ridges can accumulate dirt and grime, making it harder to clean and maintain.

Types of Horizontal Siding Materials

Horizontal siding is available in various materials, each offering distinct benefits:

  • Vinyl Siding: Widely used for its affordability, low maintenance, and durability. It comes in a wide range of colors and textures to match any home style.

  • Wood: Provides a rustic, natural appearance that many homeowners love, though it requires regular maintenance to prevent damage from moisture and pests.

  • Cedar: A premium choice that offers a timeless, elegant look. Cedar siding is durable but needs more upkeep compared to vinyl.

  • Fiber Cement: Known for its durability and resistance to weather and pests. This material offers a high level of protection for your home but can be more challenging to install.

Horizontal siding remains a popular and practical choice for many homeowners in Ashwaubenon, WI.

Its traditional appeal, variety of options, and cost-effectiveness make it a strong contender for your next siding project.

Next, we’ll conduct a comparative analysis to explore the performance, installation process, and overall appeal of both vertical and horizontal siding to help you make the best decision for your home.

Vertical Siding vs. Horizontal Siding: A Comparative Analysis

When deciding between vertical and horizontal siding for your Ashwaubenon home, it’s important to compare their performance, installation process, and overall appeal.

This section will help you understand which option aligns best with your needs and preferences.



Vertical panel siding is generally more impact-resistant and better insulated than horizontal options.

Its structure helps it withstand harsh weather conditions, making it a robust choice for protecting your home.

  • Vertical Siding: Offers superior impact resistance and insulation, ideal for extreme weather conditions.

  • Horizontal Siding: While durable, it is more prone to moisture-related issues like rot and mold, especially in the seams.


Maintenance requirements can influence your decision significantly.

Let’s explore how each siding type fares in terms of upkeep.

  • Vertical Siding: Easier to clean since water naturally runs down the panels, preventing buildup and reducing the risk of water damage.

  • Horizontal Siding: More challenging to clean due to horizontal ridges that can trap dirt and grime, requiring more frequent and thorough cleaning.

Aesthetic Appeal

The visual impact of your home’s exterior plays a crucial role in its curb appeal.

Each siding type offers a distinct look.

  • Vertical Siding: Provides a modern, unique appearance that can make your home stand out. Perfect for homeowners looking to create a striking statement with their home’s design.

  • Horizontal Siding: Offers a traditional, timeless look that complements a variety of architectural styles, from Colonial to Victorian.


DIY Feasibility

If you plan on undertaking the installation yourself, understanding the complexity of each type can help you decide which to choose.

  • Vertical Siding: Typically requires professional installation due to the need for furring strips and precise alignment.

Labor Costs

The cost of labor can significantly impact your overall budget.

Here’s a look at what to expect with each siding type.

  • Vertical Siding: More labor-intensive and, therefore, more expensive to install. The complexity of the installation process often requires skilled professionals, adding to the cost.

  • Horizontal Siding: Quicker and easier to install, resulting in lower labor costs. This efficiency makes it a cost-effective option for budget-conscious homeowners.

Both vertical and horizontal siding offer unique benefits and challenges.

Vertical siding stands out for its durability and modern appeal, while horizontal siding is beloved for its traditional look and ease of installation.

Your choice will depend on your priorities, whether they are aesthetic appeal, ease of maintenance, or budget constraints.

In the next section, we will discuss the key factors to consider before making a decision, ensuring you select the siding option that best meets your needs.

Factors to Consider Before Making a Decision

Choosing between vertical and horizontal siding involves more than just appearance.

Several key factors should guide your decision to ensure the best fit for your Ashwaubenon home.

Aesthetic Preference

The visual appeal of your home’s exterior can significantly impact its curb appeal and overall value. Here are some considerations based on different architectural styles.

Traditional Homes

For homes with a classic look, such as Colonial, Ranch, or Victorian styles, horizontal siding is often the preferred choice.

It complements the traditional architecture and offers a timeless appeal.

  • Horizontal Siding: Enhances the classic look, making it ideal for traditional home styles.

Rustic Homes

If you have a farmhouse style or Cape Cod home, vertical siding, particularly board and batten, adds a rustic charm that stands out.

  • Vertical Siding: Perfect for creating a farmhouse style, adding rustic charm, and making your home appear taller.

Personalized Look

Mixing horizontal and vertical siding can create a unique and personalized aesthetic, especially when used to accent specific features like gables, dormers, or entryways.

  • Combination: Using both styles to highlight architectural features and create visual interest.

Maintenance Requirements

Understanding the upkeep involved with each siding type can help you choose the one that best fits your lifestyle and maintenance preferences.

Low Maintenance

If you prefer to spend less time on maintenance, vinyl and aluminum sidings are excellent choices. They require minimal upkeep and are easy to clean.

  • Vinyl and Aluminum: Low maintenance, easy to clean, and durable.

High Maintenance

Wood and fiber cement sidings require regular upkeep, including painting and sealing, to maintain their appearance and protect against moisture damage.

  • Wood and Fiber Cement: Higher maintenance needs but offers a natural look and excellent durability.

Budget Considerations

Your budget will play a significant role in deciding which siding type to choose. Here are some cost-related factors to consider.

Initial Cost

Vertical siding tends to be more expensive upfront due to its complex installation process.

  • Vertical Siding: Higher initial costs due to labor-intensive installation.

Long-Term Costs

Consider the total cost of ownership, which includes maintenance, repairs, and potential replacements over time.

  • Long-Term Costs: Factor in maintenance and repair costs to get a complete picture of your investment.

By weighing these factors— aesthetic preference, maintenance requirements, and budget considerations—you can make an informed decision that meets your needs and enhances the beauty and functionality of your home.

Transform Your Home’s Curb Appeal with Urban Exteriors

By understanding the pros and cons of vertical and horizontal siding, you’re now equipped to make an informed decision for your home.

Whether you prefer the modern look of vertical panel siding or the traditional appeal of horizontal styles, your choice will enhance both the aesthetic and functional aspects of your home.

Urban Exteriors has the expertise to handle all your siding installation needs, ensuring a smooth and professional process.

Our team is dedicated to providing top-quality service, from helping you choose the right materials to the final installation.

Ready to transform your home’s exterior?

Fill out our contact form today, or give us a call!