Here is a selection of terms often associated with residential fiber cement siding. To avoid confusion, we thought it a good idea to share our understanding of each of these terms with you.

Back Sealing/Back Priming—Applying a sealer or primer to the back of cladding material.

Band Board—A decorative piece of horizontal trim placed between two floors along the rim joist.

Beaded—A narrow, half-round molding at the base of a lap siding panel.

Blind Nailing—Fastening through the top edge of lap siding so that the fastener head will be covered by the next course of siding.

Butt end/Joint—A joint created by placing edges of lap siding end-to-end without overlapping.

Casing—Molding of various widths used to trim door and window openings at the jambs; also referred to as lineal, window, or door surround.

Contraction—Commonly refers to building products contracting due to heat loss or moisture leaving the product, especially as outside temperature changes.

Course—A row of siding panels running the width of the house.

Dormer—A gabled extension built out from a sloping roof to accommodate a vertical window.

Drip Cap—A horizontal flashing placed over exterior door or window frames to divert rainwater.

Dutchlap—Refers to a drop-style panel that was popularized by early American settlers in the seaboard states; lap siding panel with a horizontal bevel at the top of the panel that sits just below the bottom of the next course of siding.

Eave—The overhang of a pitched roof at the bottom edge, usually consisting of a fascia board, a soffit for a closed cornice, and appropriate moldings.

Expansion—Commonly refers to building products expanding due to heat build-up or moisture entering the product, especially as outside temperature changes.

Exposure—The width of the exposed face of each panel of siding; also referred to as reveal.

Face—The side of the siding, trim, or soffit that is exposed to view after the product has been installed.

Face Nailing—Fastening through both the overlapping and the overlapped panel; the fastener head will be visible.

Fascia—A flat, horizontal band that covers the rafter tails and runs along the bottom edge of the roof line.

Flashing—A thin, impervious material, usually metal, placed around openings to prevent water penetration or to direct the flow of water over the cladding.

Frieze—The horizontal trimboard connecting the top of the siding with the soffit.

Furring/Furring Strip— Long, thin strips of wood or other materials used to build out the fastening surface of a wall; commonly used to correct imperfections in wall surfaces, to establish a rainscreen, or to re-establish a structural fastening surface on the exterior of non-structural products such as foam insulation.

Gable—The triangle formed on the side or the front of a building by a sloping roof.

Hot-dip Galvanized—The process of dipping metal into molten zinc to apply a protective coating that prevents corrosion; hot- dipped galvanized iron and steel are corrosion resistant.

H-channel Joint—When installing vertical siding or soffit materials, used to conceal the edges; with lap siding, H-channel or joint covers are used to cover the butt ends/joints where they come together (mainly for aesthetic purposes).

Joint Flashing—A durable, non-reactive material placed behind a butt end/joint to help shed water; commonly made of finished metal or #15 felt.

Keyway—A recess or groove in a manufactured shake or shingle siding panel.

Lap—Where two siding panels join horizontally, one over the other.

Lineal—Molding of various widths used to trim door and window openings at the jambs; also referred to as casing, window, or door surround.

Miter Cut—A beveled cut, usually 45°, made at the end of a piece of molding or board that is used to form a mitered joint.

MSF—1,000 sq. ft. of material; due to a 1-1/4" overlap (or 15% “loss” for lap), the actual coverage of 1,000 sq. ft. for lap siding is 850 sq. ft.

O.C.—On center; a measurement of the distance between the centers of two repeating members in a structure, usually studs.

OSB—Oriented Strand Board.

Panel Projection—The distance that the bottom edge of the siding projects from the wall.

Profile—The contour or outline of a siding panel as viewed from the side.

Rainscreen Wall—A method of constructing walls in which the cladding is separated from a membrane by an airspace that allows pressure equalization to prevent rain from being forced in. It consists of an exterior cladding, a cavity that is typically created through the use of furring strips behind the cladding, and an inner wall that incorporates a weather-resistant barrier.

Rake—Trim members of a gable roof that run parallel to the roof slope from the eave to the ridge.

Rigid Sheathing—Plywood, OSB, or foam sheathing.

Rim Joist—The board that the rest of the joists are nailed to. It runs the entire perimeter of the house.

Rip Cut—A cut made along the grain, usually lengthwise on a board.

Kick-Out Diverter Flashing—A flashing piece located where sloped roofs meet vertical walls; designed to divert water into a gutter.

Sealant—A waterproof filler and sealer that is used in building and repair to make a surface watertight.

Sheathing—Sheets of plywood, exterior gypsum board, or other material nailed to the outside face of studs as a base for exterior siding.

Shim—A building material, usually wood, used to even a surface.

Skirtboard—Treated lumber or PVC trimboard installed horizontally; used as a transition from foundation to siding or as a starter strip.

Soffit—The underside of an overhanging eave.

Square—Unit of measure for siding; equal to 100 square feet of exposure (e.g. a 10-ft. by 10-ft. wall section = 100 square feet = 1 Square).

Starter Strip—An accessory used under the first course of siding to provide a consistent panel angle.

Structural Member—A support that is a constituent part of any structure or building.

Structural Sheathing—The layer of boards, wood or fiber materials applied to the outer studs, joists, and rafters of a building to strengthen the structure and serve as a base for an exterior cladding.

Substrate—A layer of material applied over the studs at the exterior walls of a building.

Weather-Resistant Barrier—A building membrane that protects building materials from exterior wind and water penetration.

Z-flashing—A piece of flashing bent into the shape of a “z” and used to divert water from horizontal joints over window trim, band boards, panel intersections, and other vertical surfaces.

NOTE: When the terms “recommend” and “should” are used, the step is optional for installing fiber cement. However, it is included because the step represents best practice.

When the terms “required” and “must” are used, the step is a necessary part of the installation process and must be adhered to.