Steel Siding vs. Hardieboard Siding

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: What’s more energy efficient when building a house with steel siding versus Hardieboard siding? QUESTIONING IN QUEBEC

DEAR QUESTIONING: Hardiepanel® is a registered trademark and product of the James Hardie Company. It has an R value of 0.34 per 1/2 inch of thickness. Steel siding panels have a negligible R value, so the Hardiepanel® would be marginally more energy efficient, however probably not enough to make a difference in the entire assembly. If the Hardiepanel® is applied over 7/16″ OSB (oriented strand board), the R value of the OSB is 0.51. For more information on Hardiepanel® please visit the James Hardie website: https://www.jameshardie.com/Products/HardiePanel-Vertical-Siding

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am moving to Lancaster, California and would love to build a Hansen Residential Pole Building. Do you all build in California or know of anyone?

Thank you. LOOKING IN LANCASTER

DEAR LOOKING: We provide complete pole building kit packages, designed for the average person who will read directions to successfully construct themselves, everywhere in the USA. We ourselves are not contractors, however if you need one, we can assist you in locating one.

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have an uninsulated aluminum pole barn with ridges in the panels with horizontal 2×6’s 36in apart floor to ceiling and every 9ft or so a vertical 4×4. Would it be beneficial to do 2in rigid insulation between the 2×6’s ? What would be the proper way to attach the rigid to the metal or wood? Do I need a vapor barrier? If so – between metal and rigid? I wish I could send you a picture. BARNING IN BATH

DEAR BARNING: You (or any other person with a question) can always email photos to PoleBarnGuru@HansenPoleBuildings.com. You can do this from most cell phones as well.

If your idea is to try to climate control your pole building, then any type of insulation is a step in the right direction. Keep in mind, the majority of your heat loss (over ¾) is vertical – you are losing it through the roof. If you do not have any insulation at the ceiling line, there would be the place to start, as well as being the best return on your investment.

Ideally you should have a housewrap between the wall insulation and the metal siding. If your siding is installed with screws, you can remove it, install the housewrap and then put the siding back on (I would recommend using longer and larger diameter screws).

If you want to attach the rigid insulation to the inside of the wall steel between the wall girts, construction adhesive could be used. You will waste a fair amount of material due to cutting, and there will be cold spots at every wall girt, so this may not be the optimum solution.

On the inside of the wall girts, rigid insulation could be attached to the wall girts with construction adhesive, nails or screws. Keep in mind, foam board insulation must be covered on the inside face with gypsum wallboard or similar non-flammable products.

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

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