Is Cedar Siding Hard To Maintain?

If you are thinking of installing cedar siding, maintenance is one factor you will want to consider. Is cedar siding easier or harder to maintain than other options? Luckily, we have done some research for you, and here is what we found.

Cedar siding is harder to maintain than most other types of siding. This is because it needs to be taken care of regularly to prevent rot, mold, and water damage. Insects like termites can also ruin cedar siding if it is not well maintained.

Cedar siding is beautiful, tough, and long-lasting but still needs maintenance. Keep reading to get detailed information on how to take care of cedar siding.

Wooden house in the snowy mountains. Is Cedar Siding Hard To Maintain?

Is Cedar Siding Hard To Maintain?

Most homeowners choose this material for its beauty but the cost of maintenance is high. Maintenance of cedar siding is a bit demanding, unlike most other materials. You will need to wash the wood every year in order to get rid of debris, dirt, and spiders as they may damage the wood over time. 

You will also need to repaint the wood regularly, so as to keep it from rotting. Also, depending on where you live, it can become a fire hazard if you leave it to age naturally without repainting. 

This regular maintenance doesn't just add work; it also adds cost. If you want to stay within a tight budget, then you may want to consider other options.

How Do You Maintain Cedar Siding?

How Do You Maintain Cedar Siding? Close up of a door knob and dead bolt with cedar house siding and a lawn in the background

To ensure your cedar siding continues to look good for years, regular maintenance needs to be done. If you keep up with the following maintenance tips, you can expect your siding to last longer:

Look Out For Signs Of Termites

Termites can damage cedar siding. Check your siding regularly for any signs of termites. Some signs of termite damage are fecal pallets, mud tubes, holes in the wood, and fallen wings. 

Seal Any Hole Or Crack

When there are cracks in the siding, it will allow moisture to get in and destroy the wood. If you notice any cracks, ensure you get a sealant and seal it immediately. 

Reduce Moisture

High humidity in your house can affect the siding outside. In order to keep this moisture down, ensure you run a fan and air conditioner when necessary as high moisture levels can lead to rot. 

Clean Your Siding Regularly

Cedar siding can also accumulate dirt and dust like other sidings and this can dull its appearance while also accommodating mold that can damage it. To maintain it, scrub with soap and water at least twice a year. If you notice any sign of mold, you can add vinegar or bleach to the cleaning water. 

Repaint Or Restain Your Siding

Repaint Or Restain Your Siding - Craftsman home cedar siding solid wood pillars patio veranda deck grassy green yard blue sky and landscapin

Cedar siding is painted or stained in order to preserve the wood. When you notice that the paint is fading away naturally, reapply paint where necessary so as to protect the wood. 

Install Wind Chimes 

Windchimes don't just create a pleasant ambient noise. They also deter woodpeckers from looking for insects in the area. These resonant decorations can extend the lifespan of your investment. 

Can Old Cedar Siding Be Restored?

Can Old Cedar Siding Be Restored?Wooden house in the snowy mountains. Wall and roof covering with natural shingle.

Yes, old cedar can be restored and you only need to soft wash it in order to get the siding back to its original state. You can use low-pressure techniques with a mix of biodegradable cleaning solutions. 

These solutions can be used to clean dirt, thereby getting rid of algae, bacteria, dirt, mold, and other pollutants that cause black streaks. By soft washing, you'll keep your siding healthy and beautiful.

Is It Better To Stain Or Paint Cedar Siding? 

Is It Better To Stain Or Paint Cedar Siding? Craftsman home cedar siding solid wood pillars patio veranda deck grassy green yard blue sky and landscaping

Paint on cedar siding covers the wood grain completely. However, paint does not entirely enter the pores of the wood. Paint can be a good option if the siding has become discolored. 

A coat of stain, on the other hand, enters the entire wood pores and it also has a high pigment concentration. This means that a stain coat works better with the cedar siding. 

Some factors need to be considered when deciding which to choose between staining or painting cedar siding. These factors include:

Level Of Protection

In terms of protecting the cedar siding, both paint and stain can protect your material from sunlight and moisture. However, the level of protection they offer differs. 

For painting, you need to use a primer before applying paint to the material. Two paint coats can give you up to 10 years of protection. For staining, you can apply stain on the material once you are done preparing the surface. Two stain coats can also give you up to 10 years of protection. 

Time Consumption 

Although stain needs to be reapplied more frequently than paint, it is less time-consuming to do so. If the stain is fading slowly, you can easily apply a new stain coat in order to refresh the look.

On the other hand, paints start peeling as time goes on and this will make your material look unappealing and old. To refresh the look of a painted cedar, you need to scrape or sandpaper the peeling and loose paint and then reapply a new paint coat. This requires a lot of effort and time.

Is It Okay To Use A Pressure Washer On Cedar Siding?

Yes, it is okay to pressure wash cedar siding but it needs to be done by a professional. This can be done by making use of a low PSI pressure washer in order to protect the cedar from being damaged by the high pressure

However, there are things to consider before you pressure wash your siding, and here are some:

  • The type of cedar siding
  • The type of pressure washer
  • The pressure of the water

All these need to be taken into consideration for successful pressure washing. 

Click here to see this pressure washer on Amazon

How Often Should You Stain Cedar Siding?

This depends on how natural you want your wood to look. Wood siding that is transparent will turn gray quicker. Semi-transparent stain adds small pigment and also gives you the chance to keep your wood in its initial color rather than changing to grey every 3-5 years, which also depends on some factors. 

Semi-solid stains on the other hand need to be repainted every 5 - 8 years. If you plan to use a solid stain, then you should consider making use of factory prime for your cedar siding.

Once your siding has been installed, apply a final coat and you just got yourself over 25 years of performance.

How Much Does It Cost To Install Cedar Siding?

The average cost of acquiring a good cedar siding is around $6 - $8 per square foot. On a house of 2000 square feet, you are expected to spend at least $12,500 - $17,000 to get cedar siding installed. 

Cedar siding is beautiful and fits different styles of agricultural housing. It can be painted, expanding your design options. You need to refinish siding every 5-7 years but some conditions could increase it to 10 years if you follow certain precautions which include maintenance. 

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Cedar Siding? 

There are several advantages and disadvantages of cedar siding. Here we'll cover some of the main ones:


These are some of the primary benefits you'll get from installing cedar siding:

  • Natural beauty: Cedar is one of the most beautiful materials used for siding. It can be used for different designs. 
  • They serve as a good insulator: Unlike most other types of siding that do little to insulate the house, cedar siding provides insulation and also reduces outside noise. 


While cedar siding has its benefits, it also has some drawbacks. The following are the disadvantages of cedar siding:

  • Cedar siding requires high maintenance. The maintenance of cedar siding is more demanding as you will need to wash, stain and seal it often.
  • They are prone to fire. Some use flame retardant to treat their cedar shakes and shingles for safety reasons. 

To Wrap Up

If you would like to invest in beautiful siding, you can go for cedar siding but its maintenance can be demanding. The already-stated maintenance tips can help you take good care of your cedar siding.

If you enjoyed this post, here are similar articles you may like:

Can You Use Roofing Nails For Cedar Shakes?

Should Vinyl Siding Move?

Does Roof Flashing Go Under Siding?