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    Author(s): Charles Carll; Charles R. BoardmanSteve P. Verrill
    Date: 2013
    Source: USDA Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory, Research Paper, FPL-RP-674, 2013; 29 p.
    Publication Series: Research Paper (RP)
    Station: Forest Products Laboratory
    PDF: Download Publication  (959.29 KB)


    This paper describes a study that was undertaken to evaluate the degree of correlation between in-service performance of hardboard siding and its performance in the industry standard test procedure for “weatherability of substrate.” The study included 13 different hardboard sidings: 6 noncommercial boards and 7 commercial products. All manufacturing plants operating in the United States in 1996–1997 were represented in the study. Twenty replicate specimens of each of the 13 different boards were exposed on the south side of an unconditioned building near Madison, Wisconsin, for 155 months (almost 13 years). Although the climate at the exposure site was less challenging with regard to rainfall or decay hazard than most locations in the eastern United States, paint coating on test specimens was only about half as thick as recommended. Two failure modes were observed in service, drip-edge paint cracking and edge welting, although paint condition on board faces remained essentially perfect throughout the exposure period. With regard to the two observed failure modes, substantial differences were observed among the 13 sidings. Relative frequency of the two failure modes was related to residual thickness swelling (RTS) value of the board, as identified by the substrate weatherability test procedure. Lower RTS values were associated with lower relative frequency of failure and lower relative frequency of more intense failure. In general, there was no “plateau” value below which further reductions in RTS were not associated with greater relative frequency of improved in-service performance.

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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Carll, Charles, G; Boardman, Charles R.; Verrill, Steve P. 2013. Durability of hardboard lap siding--performance in laboratory testing and in long-term exterior exposure. Res. Pap. FPL-RP-674. Madison, WI: U.S. Department of Agriculture. Forest Service. Forest Products Laboratory. 25 p.


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    Hardboard siding, long-term exposure, durability, edge welt, drip edges

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