I know I say this in almost every post, but this is SUPER IMPORTANT. Siding is so important, in fact, that I might say it again… and again. We wanted our tiny house to be clothed in the finest, strongest, and most stylish materials before embarking on our adventure. Therefore, Guillaume and I spent countless days searching for siding that would reflect our personal style with the gusto to withstand a colossal journey.
How to choose siding for your tiny house (3 super important steps):
Step 1: Consider budget, durability, weight, and (of course) the “pretty” factor.
We all want our house to be the “pretty gal on the block.” So think ahead! Like 10-20 years ahead. The prom queen can sometimes let herself go (tanning beds…. stay away from them kids). You want the quiet library chick, because she’s gonna be a hot mom someday.
Step 2: Research more, and probably reconsider your original choice.
If you’re like us, you’ll pick a material based on appearance, think about it for awhile, read about it, and then decide against it. So research all your options, including: cedar, redwood, metal, and vinyl.
Step 3: Jump in head first.
Okay, you’ve researched. You’ve made a decision (again). Go for it! Stop questioning yourself. Stop hyperventilating. It’s okay. It’s gonna be okay. Go, little bird. No regrets.
We really wanted reclaimed wood for our tiny house because it felt unique and green. Both Guillaume and I like rustic decor (check out our pinterest), so we wanted to incorporate this look on the outside of our house as well as the inside. But after scouring craigslist for weeks, it seemed easier to choose readily available siding at Home Depot.
Lucky for us, we found E&K Vintage woods. They have a variety of beautiful reclaimed siding options and other vintage woods including wood slabs. Their showroom is impressive, and we suggest visiting if you’re in the Los Angeles area. All of their woods are well cared for and kiln dried (which is important).
The siding we chose is 70+ years old, making it older than Guillaume and I combined, and resourced from a crumbling old barn in Wisconsin. Being a mid-west girl, I was smitten not only by its tones of red and silver patina but also by its origin.
One of our favorite boards actually has shotgun holes and pellets still lodged inside! Of course, we put this piece in a prime location. Trespassers beware!
Choosing reclaimed wood meant that we had to take a few extra precautions. While shopping we specifically searched for siding that had the tongue and groove or shiplap joints preserved in good condition. Often when barns are torn down the wood can be damaged in the process, so we inspected our siding carefully and bought from a reliable source (E&K Vintage Wood). Next, we had to accept the inevitable fact that our yield would be a lesser percentage to age frailty. This meant buying about 20% extra to compensate for existing cracks and holes in the wood.
Finally, when installing our reclaimed siding we wanted to take every precaution to make sure it would last. This meant:
1). Redwood Furring Strips
Furring strips not only mark studs for easy installation, but they also add a gap between the siding and house wrap. This will help prevent any moisture from getting locked behind our boards.
Because our wood is 70+ years old, it was prone to crack on installation. In order to maximize our yield we carefully pre-drilled the boards. We took care to line up our screws to studs, for support and visual appeal. We also applied silicone to the back of the holes, hoping that it would act as a sealing agent as the screw goes through.
3). The Right Screws
Finding the right screws can be difficult. We wanted reliable, exterior grade, heavy duty screws, but we also didn’t want our screws to look too modern next to our reclaimed wood. We used Bronze Star Heavy Duty Screws from Screw Solutions. They look amazing and they’re strong as nails (well, screws actually).
4). Weather Protection
Even though our wood survived over 70 years of Wisconsin rain and snow, we need it to withstand 60+ mph winds when being towed on the highway. We decided to take an extra precaution and put a layer of weather sealant.
And, just in case you wanted more photos… we wouldn’t dare deny you:
What kind of siding will you choose?
Siding provided by E&K Vintage Wood: the finest reclaimed wood.
Hardware provided by Screw Solutions: outstanding products with outstanding service.