Increase "Green" using James Hardie Siding PDF Print E-mail
Written by Steven Horn   

The goal of most “Green” projects is to reduce the impact on the environment.  Until recently, I was not aware of the difference that my choice in siding could make.  Please be aware that this is not an endorsement for all cementitious siding products.  This is only an evaluation of James Hardie Siding.  Be careful to examine any product that you install on a home and make sure that you fully understand the components used in manufacturing and finishing before you commit to using it.  Many products can appear the same at installation, but may disappoint down the road when their performance is sub-par.

There are several characteristics in the production of James Hardie siding that make it more environmentally friendly.

Regional Manufacturing:

There are ten (10) facilities that are used for manufacture throughout the United States.  This allows the facilities to minimize their impact on the environment by reducing the transportation required to bring raw materials into the plant and to transport the finished materials to the jobsite.  Local facilities also help to support the regional economy by drawing from raw material suppliers close to the plant.

Low Toxicity Raw Materials:

The products used in the manufacturing of James Hardie siding are wood pulp, cement, sand and water.  All of these products are low in toxicity and do not cause further damage to the environment.  The water used for production is recycled up to four (4) times.  As we have noted in earlier articles about Water Conservation, this valuable natural resource is slowly depleting.  Any manufacturing process that conserves water is a huge benefit to the environment.

Long Lasting Finished Product:

Because James Hardie siding is a durable and long lasting quality product, the resources required to maintain and repair it are few.  Many other products on the market may be used for the exterior of a home, but if they damage easily or deteriorate in a short time, then they must be replaced.  This excess energy and waste of resources is avoided with the use of James Hardie siding.

Low VOC Exterior Finish System:

In previous articles, we have talked about the benefits of low VOC paints and finish systems.  These reduce the Volatile Organic Compounds that are released into the air when a paint or finish is applied.  The ColorPlus system that is used in the manufacturing of James Hardie siding bakes on paint in the factory.  This eliminates the release of VOC’s from painting on the jobsite.  The quality 15-year finish on the product also means that less paint is needed in the future to maintain your home.

Quality Manufacturing:

The goal of any manufacturing process is to reduce wasted materials.  By making that a goal at James Hardie, the amount of material that must be discarded due to error is reduced.  This efficiency helps to reduce the energy and materials consumed in the manufacture of your siding.  Any reduction in energy is a plus for the “Green” side.


Give careful thought to the products that you choose for your home.  If reducing environmental impact is a priority, consider adding James Hardie Siding to your equation.The manufacturing approach uses common sense ideas to decrease damage to the environment and reduce your carbon footprint.



0 #1 Joaquin Erazo Jr. 2011-12-05 08:07
You raise several good points that consumers often forget. Even you are interesting in eco-building, you can overlook transportation costs and impact. The closer the materials are to the work site, the less cost to the environment in fossil fuel usage and transportation costs. Even though the transportation is a one-time cost to the consumer, we need to consider the overall impact on the environment and change the way we think about resource use.

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