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Cedar Shake Siding Guide

About Cedar Shake Siding

While many synthetic materials are manufactured to imitate the appearance of wood, there really is nothing like the real thing. Wood siding creates a warm and rich look that has been loved for centuries. However, it is a more premium siding material that requires a high level of maintenance.

Close up of cedar siding

Cedar is one of the most popular wood siding options. Compared to other wood species, cedar is more resistant to rot and can be easily stained for a rich finish. In this guide to cedar siding, we’ll explore elements such as pricing, pros and cons, and customization options to help you decide whether it’s the right material for your siding replacement.

Customization Options



  • Few flaws, such as knots or splits
  • Overall ‘clean’ look
  • More expensive option of the two grades
  • Can be easily painted & stained
  • More elegant, upscale appearance


  • More knots than clear grade
  • Has a casual and rustic look
  • Warm appearance
  • Less expensive option of the two grades



  • Smooth surface
  • Clearly visible grain patterns and texture variations
  • Requires maintenance every 2-3 years


  • Saw marks are visible
  • Rustic appearance
  • Requires maintenance every 5-7 years


Cedar siding must be stained to protect against rotting. This stain will have to be reapplied every few years, depending on the opacity (how visible the original wood is) of the stain:

  • Transparent: 1-2 years
  • Semi-transparent: 2-5 years
  • Semi-solid: 4-7 years
  • Solid: 7-10 years
  • Primer and paint: up to 25 years

Pros and Cons

  • One of the most elegant and timeless siding options available
  • Can be easily stained
  • Resists swelling and splitting
  • More moisture and insect repellant than pine
  • On the more expensive end of siding options
  • High maintenance
    • Must be restained regularly
    • Susceptible to weather damage and rotting

Cedar Shake Siding Cost

The price of cedar siding varies greatly by texture, grade, stain and more. However, a general range for knotty cedar is around $800 per 100 sq ft, including installation. Clear cedar is typically installed for about $1,100 per 100 sq ft.

Final Thoughts

For homeowners who value the elegance of wood, and aren’t satisfied with synthetic imitations, then real cedar siding is the best choice. However, it is important to be aware of the higher costs and more rigorous maintenance that is required of this siding material. If you are willing to invest the time and money required for wood siding, the gorgeous aesthetic appeal it creates is absolutely worth it.

Find out if cedar siding is right for your house - speak to our expert at 888.392.4236 or visit