Cedar clapboard siding is a very popular siding timber for its cost and durability. It also adds to the natural aesthetics of the house boosting your curb appeal.

The average cost to install cedar clapboard siding is about $13,500, coming in between $9,000 and $18,000. THere are additional costs for removal of old siding and painting or sealing the new install.

Below we go into detail about the cost of materials and installation.

ceder clapboard siding average cost

Cedar clapboard siding cost per sq. ft.

Cedar clapboard siding costs about $9, coming in between $6 and $12 per square foot to install. You can pay about $3 on the low end, while the high end can go up to $30 per square foot depending on your location, finish option, wood grade, and home size.

Cedar clapboard siding cost for a 1,500 sq. ft. house

Installing cedar clapboard siding on a 1,500 square foot house costs about $7,500 to 19,500, with an average of $13,500. Although the initial cost to install cedar clapboard siding is higher than other wood siding options, you can save money in the long term. It is highly durable and can naturally resist decay.

Clapboard ceder siding installed

Cedar siding maintenance cost

Cedar siding requires high maintenance because it is more susceptible to rot, moisture, and insect damage. You should power wash it every 2 to 4 years and stain or paint it after every 3 to 5 years. You should also seal the siding to prevent water damage or chemical bleeding.

On average, you can spend about $1 to $3 per square foot to maintain cedar clapboard siding. The cost translates into approximately $2,000 to $5,000 for a 1,500 square foot house.

Cost to clean cedar siding

Cleaning cedar siding is essential to maintain its integrity and get rid of accumulated dust and dirt. Hiring a professional that is licensed and insured will be about 20% more than hiring a handyman. If you decide to hire a property management company, you can spend about 35% more on the cleaning.

On average, you can spend about $0.40 and $0.75 per square foot for cleaning. For a multi-story house, the cost can be 30% more, while a complex house may cost 15% more.

If you wish to save on the cleaning costs, you can DIY the project. You should, however, consider using environmentally friendly cleaning supplies that may cost 5% more than regular supplies. Also, if your house is neglected or extremely dirty, you may pay an additional 20% for the cleaning.

Factors that affect the total cost of cedar siding at the end

Several factors can affect the overall cost of installing cedar siding cost. These include:

  • Wood finish

The wood finish you choose will affect the overall cost of the installation. For instance, if you choose to add paint or sealant, you may spend an additional price of between $0.50 and $1.50 per square foot. Different types of wood finish have different lifespans, so you should choose the one that suits your budget or preference.


  • Wood grade

Just like other types of woods, cedar has grades that indicate the number of blemishes present. Higher grades may cost about 50% more than lower cedar wood grades. Clear cedar wood is rare and costly because it is extracted from the tree’s center. Lower wood grades have more knots and blemishes than better grades.


  • Labor cost

Labor usually takes the highest percentage for any project. If you want to reduce labor costs, you can DIY the project. However, if not done correctly, you may incur more expensive repairs in the future. A handyman is a cheaper option than professionals, but they may not be skilled enough to handle the installation. The best but most expensive option is hiring a specialized professional.


  • House footprint

A simple square or rectangular house is easier, faster, and cheaper to work with than one with many cutouts, corners, and intricate details. So, if your home has a complex design, the installation cost will be higher. Also, multi-storied houses may cost about 25% to 30% more.


  • Exterior design

The exterior design of your house will also determine the overall installation cost. A multi-storied home will be more expensive to install cedar siding than a single-storied house. This is because special ladders and scaffolding will be required. Also, homes with steeper roofs may be costlier than regular roofs.


  • Your location

People living in areas where cedar is readily available will spend less on the installation than areas where this type of wood is scarce. Expect to pay an additional 30% to 40% more for the installation cost if you reside in areas where cedar is rare. Also, the cedar wood prices may fluctuate depending on availability every year.

Is cedar clapboard worth the money?

Yes, cedar clapboard is worth the money. It lasts for about 15 to 30 years, and its installation cost is relatively affordable. More so, it is sustainable than other types of woods. Cedar siding insulation is also excellent, which can incredibly reduce cooling and heating bills. It also significantly reduces carbon production by managing your home’s temperature.

How to maintain cedar clapboard?

Cedar clapboard siding requires regular maintenance. Below are the maintenance steps you need to follow to keep the wood siding healthy and robust.

  • Pressure washing: it is essential to power wash your cedar siding after every 2 to 4 years. Use a power washer and non-phosphate detergents for dusty climates. For most climates, use a mild detergent with oxygen bleach to get rid of mold and moss.
  • Stain/paint: This should be done every 3 to 5 years to protect the house from damage. Areas exposed to the sun should be repainted or restained more often.
  • Remove bleeding: cedar contains a natural acidic tannin that may lead to staining. You can remove the stain using a mild detergent and a hose.
  • Remove iron stain: if cedar comes into contact with non-coated or non-galvanized metal, it may form rust stains. You can get rid of the stain using a commercial cleaner, then repaint or restain the wood.
  • Chalking: once paint or stain wears off, a chalky, white powder is left on the surface. Ensure you remove the chalking and sand all flaky areas before repainting or restaining the siding.
  • Repairs: Sometimes, the wood may reject the sealant and start flaking, peeling, or blistering.

You should contact a professional to find the moisture leak source, then repair and repaint/restain the wood.

Pros and Cons of cedar clapboard siding

Cedar clapboard siding is an excellent siding material for your house. It, however, has several pros and cons, as listed below.


  • Cedar siding is highly versatile and its rustic design makes the home charming and has a curb appeal.
  • Natural cedar has a unique woodsy scent that is very appealing. It overshadows other siding types, such as vinyl siding.
  • It is highly durable as it can last for up to 15 to 30 years or more when maintained well.
  • It offers better insulation than most siding materials and keeps the house warm during winter.
  • Cedar is environmentally friendly, sustainable, and can be recycled, unlike other materials.
  • Cedar siding offers a higher resale value than aluminum, vinyl, or engineered wood siding.


  • Cedar is prone to insect infestation, mold and mildew if not properly maintained.
  • It requires more maintenance than other siding materials. Without repainting and restaining it every 2 to 5 years, its lifespan reduces considerably.
  • Cedar is flammable and can catch flames faster than aluminum or vinyl siding, even when fireproofed.
  • Cedar siding is not the cheapest way to side a house, especially now that the cost of lumber is at a premium.

Cedar VS other types of wood siding

Wood typeLifespanAverage cost (sq. ft.)Score
Pine10 - 15$3 to $105
Oak25 - 50$4 to $810
Redwood25 - 35$6 to $207
Cypress15 - 40$8 to $158
Hardiplank30 - 50$7 to $129
Cedar15 - 30$6 to $128
Average25 - 35$9.258

Pinewood lasts for about 10 to 15 years, and its installation costs about $3 to $10 per square foot. Oak lasts for approximately 25 to 30 years and installing it ranges between $4 and $8 per square foot. If you prefer using redwood siding, expect to pay between $6 and $20 per square foot. This wood lasts for about 25 to 30 years.

Installing a cypress can set you back by about $8 to $15 per square foot, but it is worth it because it can last for 15 to 40 years. On the other hand, Hardiplank siding costs between $7 and $12 per square foot and can last for 30 to 50 years.

Cedar siding is very popular among homeowners. It is also highly durable as its lifespan is about 15 to 30 years. Expect to spend about $6 to $12 per square foot for the installation.

The cost varies widely depending on the wood grade, location, and complexity of the job.

Cedar VS other siding materials

Wood typeLifespanAverage cost (sq. ft.)Score
Wood40 + years$7 - $105
Vinyl60 + years$2 - $39
Fiber cement100 + years$4 - $610
Aluminum40 + years$2.50 - $58
Stucco80 + years$7 - $107
Steel70 + years$4 - $68
Average65 Years$57

When choosing a siding material for your home, your budget and preference are usually the main determinants. Wood siding costs approximately $7 to $10 per square foot to install and can last for more than 40 years. Vinyl siding is relatively cheaper as its installation costs about $2 to $3 per square foot. Vinyl lasts for over 60 years, making it a cost-effective choice than wood.

Fiber cement is the most durable siding material as it can last for over 100 years with little maintenance required. It is relatively cheaper to install than wood, at the cost of $4 to $6 per square foot. Installing aluminum siding ranges between $2.50 to $5 per square foot, and it can last for over 40 years.

Stucco siding is also highly durable, with a lifespan of over 80 years. It costs approximately $7 to $10 per square foot to install. On the other hand, Steel costs about $4 to $6 per square foot and can last for more than 70 years.

How to save money on cedar clapboard?

There are several ways you can save money on cedar siding. These include:

Getting several estimates

If you can get 3 to 5 estimates, you will have an opportunity to compare the rates and select the most reasonable price. More so, you can negotiate the price if the professional finds out you have other options.

Hire during winter

Most companies usually close during the dormant season because they get minimal or no jobs at all. If you hire professionals to side your house during this period, you can get a better price. This is because the few remaining companies will do their best to attract the remaining clients.

Ignore page one of google results

If you are looking for cedar siding installers on the internet, you should skip the first page and go to the second or third page. Usually, page one companies pay huge advertisement fees that force them to hike the prices. Companies on page two of Google may offer a lower price and better services because they have not paid hefty advertisement costs.

Ask around

If you know people that have installed cedar clapboard siding in your area, ask them for referrals. Also, request your family, friends, and workmates to give you references, if any. Professionals may offer you a discount for the reference.


Staining cedar clapboard siding is better than painting because it expands and contracts more with the wood. This makes the wood endure the changing weather better. Stain is also more breathable than paint, which allows air to flow naturally through the wood.

More so, stain can withstand traffic better than paint, and its durability protects the wood better than paint. However, if you want diversity, paint is a better option as you can select the color you want.

Yes, you can use a pressure washer on cedar clapboard siding as long as you set the sprayer to low pressure. Wood has a softer surface than brick or vinyl siding. So, to avoid damaging it, you should use low pressure. Also, you should not work too closely on the siding.

It is not recommended to caulk butt joints on cedar clapboard siding. This is because the siding material is designed to expand and contract due to temperature changes naturally. Adhesives may prevent this natural movement and cause the siding to crack.

However, if you need to caulk the siding, you should use polyurethane, acrylic-silicone, or acrylic-latex caulking products. Avoid any caulking product with 100% silicone. Polyurethane caulking is an excellent option as it remains flexible, sticks better, and paintable.

Timothy Munene
Author: Timothy Munene - Timothy is a freelance writer and an online entrepreneur.