While there are a number of first-rate board and batten siding alternatives available in the market today, many homeowners still prefer wood’s natural look. And that is even though the material comes with several disadvantages. 

source: unsplash.com

Pine, for example, is among the many wood type homeowners opt as board and batten siding material.

Specifically, pine is known as a great material for exterior siding. It is easy on the pocket, durable, as well as resistant to rotting and warping.

The material is not all roses, however.

As mentioned, pinewood comes with a few drawbacks that other wood types have as well.

So, to help you decide whether it is the right exterior board and batten siding for you, below are six disadvantages that you should be cautious about. 

1. Does Not Last Long Compared to Other Board and Batten Siding Materials

Given the right circumstances, wood of any type is proven durable. But if these conditions are not met, the material would likely deteriorate quite quickly. 

That said, if you want your pine board and batten siding to hold out at least 20 years, you must take into consideration the following factors: 

  • The siding must be properly sanded, sealed, and stained
  • The siding must be appropriately installed
  • Regular treatment and maintenance
  • Avoid timbers with huge knot holes and cracks

But not only that. Unmanageable factors such as extreme weather can also incur damage or hasten the decaying process of the material. Excessive moisture and drastic temperature changes can cause the wood to rot and warp.

2. Requires Proper Sealing and Staining

Because pine wood is naturally soft compared to other wood types, it needs to be properly sealed and stained. Ideally, applying a sealer and a stain helps the boards last longer. Applying polyurethane in timber makes the material easier to clean too. 

That being said, pinewood is best to seal using polyurethane of any type. However, acrylic polyurethane is highly recommended since it dries quickly. You can apply it using a foam paint roller and use a paint pad to compress the bubbles as you apply the substance. 

3. Prone to Discoloration.

Another drawback about pine board and batten siding is that it tends to darken over time. Excessive exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays causes the timber to age which creates amber-like color spots. It can be avoided by coating the timbers with a UV-resistant sealer. However, keep in mind that it is not a long-term solution. 

4. Requires Regular Treatment and Maintenance

Because pine wood is naturally soft and is susceptible to damage and discoloration, regular treatment and maintenance are needed to ensure that it will last long.

Essentially, you will have to at least seal the timbers and paint them again annually which can be kind of too much if you are a busy type of person. Such an amount of work is not worth it as well, especially if there are other board and batten sidings materials available in the market that do not need regular maintenance.

5. Not Cost-effective

Pinewood is not a cost-effective material. As mentioned earlier, the material requires an excessive amount of work—treatment and maintenance—in order to keep its quality and prolong its life. And to do this, you will have to shell out hundreds of dollars for every job.

6. Sensitive to Extreme Weather

Most pine sidings are sensitive to excessive heat exposure and a highly humid climate. In addition, intense UV rays exposure might damage the siding more prevalent than expected. This means pine boards will not last long as an unstained siding option. Some houses with pine siding in tropical areas don’t last for more than 15 years.

Pine boards can warp when exposed to prolonged heat and moisture. This type of siding needs to be primed on both sides, especially the edges. On the other hand, cedar or fir is a much better material than pine boards since they can retain the paint applied to their surface for a longer time. Note that painting to protect pine from worms and sun rays is necessary.

Pine sidings are not suitable for areas that have a humid climate. These materials require perfect sealing and treatment to prevent the wood from moisture and water absorption.

Grain tends to rise, and knots will eventually fall out or work their way loose, especially in humid conditions. If the pine boards have been painted and not correctly sealed, moisture can enter the wood through these holes and cracks, causing rot.

Pine sidings can’t maintain their sturdiness if exposed to extreme weather conditions, such as heavy rain or high winds. The wood may swell to the extent that it pulls away from the house itself, leaving gaps in the siding that allow water damage inside your home.

This ends our blog about the disadvantages of having pine board wooden siding. These drawbacks are not common but can occur if you don’t take extra precautions to prevent any potential damages from happening in the first place.

How to Seal and Stain a Pine Board and Batten Siding

While pinewood is naturally soft and not as durable as other types of wood such as cedar, it can still last for a decade or even more. And that is through sealing and staining the timbers.

In this process, however, the type of coat you will apply is crucial to ensure that the material is efficiently protected. It is particularly true if the area where your house is, is prone to harsh and erratic weather.

That said, here are the three types of sealers you can use:

Stain, on the other hand, is a type of substance that enters and douses the insides of the material—or the wood fiber, to be specific. Through such a formula, it then seals the wood and shields it from water as well as moisture that naturally results in rotting and warping.

Stain is also not prone to chipping and cracking, unlike paint. It is not a coat-type of sealer-like paint too but rather a penetrating one. And given how the formula works, it would be difficult to change the color of previously stained timbers. 

When it comes to the cost, the average amount you would spend on staining depends heavily on the size of the house. A professional service for a two-story house of over 2, 000 square feet, for example, would cost you around $2, 000 to $4, 000.

A clear sealer is a type of substance formulated to protect the wood from issues caused by moisture such as warping and rotting. It is developed to preserve the timber’s natural hue as well. Essentially, clear sealers come with elements that slow down the aging process of pine and other types of wood due to excessive exposure to ultraviolet light. 

In terms of price, the overall cost depends heavily on the size of the house. A 2, 300 square foot two-story house, for instance, costs between $2, 000 and $4, 000 which is the same as when you use a stain. Also, keep in mind that clear sealers need to be reapplied every two years.

Although paint is primarily known as a design material, it can also serve as a sealer. Hence, among the three, paint is considered cost-effective since it can act both as a sealer and colorant.

Paint is relatively cheaper compared to clear sealers and stains as well. Painting a 2, 300 square foot two-story house will cost you around $2, 000 to $3, 000, for example.  

Pine Board and Batten Siding Is Not That Bad!

Pine board and batten siding can indeed provide the natural look that many synthetic siding materials such as vinyl and fiber cement cannot give. But because of its inherent disadvantages just like any type of wooden siding, many homeowners shun it.

Still, pinewood’s benefits outweigh its drawbacks. There are now available solutions to the problems that can certainly fix the issue and extend the siding’s life.

Editorial Contributors
avatar for Matt Greenfield

Matt Greenfield

Matt Greenfield is an experienced writer specializing in home improvement topics. He has a passion for educating and empowering homeowners to make informed decisions about their properties. Matt's writing focuses on a range of topics, including windows, flooring, HVAC, and construction materials. With a background in construction and home renovation, Matt is well-versed in the latest trends and techniques in the industry. His articles offer practical advice and expert insights that help readers tackle their home improvement projects with confidence. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a seasoned professional, Matt's writing is sure to provide valuable guidance and inspiration.

Learn More