PVC trim vs. Hardie Trim: which is better?

September 17, 2023 by

When it comes to choosing new trim for your home, you may be wondering which material is better: PVC trim or Hardie Trim? Both materials have their pros and cons, so it can be difficult to decide which is right for you. In this blog post, we will compare PVC trim and Hardie Trim and help you decide which is the best choice for your home.

What is PVC trim and Hardie Trim?

PVC trim and Hardie Trim are two of the most popular types of trim products used to finish the outside of a home. PVC trim is a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) based material made specifically for exterior use. It comes in stock color white, although it is available in a few select colors or can be painted a custom color, offers superior durability and resistance to moisture, and is low maintenance when compared to other exterior trims.

Home with PVC trim

PVC trim

Hardie Trim is a product designed to mimic the look of traditional wood while offering more strength and greater weather resistance.

Home with Hardie trim

Hardie Trim

Both PVC trim and Hardie Trim are an excellent choice for outdoor accents such as column wraps, window trims, soffits, porch details, and more. PVC trim requires no prepainting or staining to remain watertight, but may require additional treatments over time for cosmetic reasons. Meanwhile, Hardie Trim delivers timeless beauty that will never go out of style – a good option for those looking for lasting value from their home improvement projects. PVC trim and Hardie Trim each offer unique features that ensure you can find the ideal trim option for your exterior remodel.

How are they made and what are the benefits of each type of trim board

As stated above, PVC trim boards are made from a PVC-based material and offer incredible durability and resistance to weathering. PVC trim is lightweight and highly durable, requiring very little maintenance over its lifetime, which makes it an ideal choice for any exterior application. PVC trim is a great option for more decorative elements such as moldings, window panels, and more! However, PVC trim can have movement in boards with extreme cold or heat.

Hardie Trim boards are composed mostly of cement combined with special man-made fibers, giving it the strength and resiliency to withstand extreme temperatures as well as intense ultraviolet exposure without staining or rotting. The fibers also help prevent cracking due to impact or changes in temperature and humidity. This combination of weather-prevention abilities makes Hardie Trim a dimensionally stable product that will last a lifetime when installed.

infographic showing components of James Hardie trim

Components of Hardie Trim

Both PVC trim and Hardie Trim offer excellent resistance to pests and other environmental factors, giving you peace of mind knowing that your home will look beautiful for years to come.

Installation information for both types of trim boards

When it comes to installing trim boards, PVC trim and Hardie Trim are two of the most popular materials on the market. PVC trim is lightweight and easy to work with; however, Hardie Trim provides sturdier construction than PVC trim thanks to its cement-based composition. Both materials have their own unique installation processes, so it’s important to choose the right one for your project. PVC trim can be easily cut with a miter saw, while Hardie Trim requires a power miter saw with a special fiber cement blade or jigsaw for more precise cuts. Both PVC trim and Hardie Trim can also be nailed directly into the exterior sheathing. Whether you’re looking for a hassle-free installation or sturdy construction that won’t break down over time, both PVC trim and Hardie Trim offer great benefits for any home improvement project.

Closeup of post with PVC trim

PVC trim

Cost comparisons between PVC trim and Hardie Trim

Although traditionally PVC trim has been thought of as the less expensive choice, the two are similarly priced, often with Hardie Trim ending up being slightly less expensive. PVC trim and Hardie Trim are both popular options among homeowners for adding an unprecedented level of detail and style to any trim project.

PVC trim is a synthetic material, making it impervious to insect damage, moisture, mildew, and warping. PVC trim also offers flexibility in terms of installation; you can pierce or drill into the material without any splintering or cracking like that of a wood product. PVC trim is usually the more expensive option, with panels ranging between $3.50 to $4.50 per linear foot (based off standard size width – larger widths are priced higher).

Home with blue siding and white trim

PVC trim

However, Hardie Trim stands out for its durability. This product features cement blended with other materials, resulting in an extremely stable product that won’t be affected by direct contact from exterior elements like temperature fluctuation. Generally less expensive, prices start at around $2.50 per linear foot with similar installation costs.

Home with white siding and Hardie trim

Hardie Trim

Ultimately, PVC trim and Hardie Trim offer different levels of performance that should suit nearly any homeowner for their trim needs depending on budget constraints and desired longevity.

Which is better for your home – PVC trim or Hardie Trim?

PVC trim and Hardie Trim are two of the most common materials used to give your home’s exterior a polished look. PVC trim is a synthetic material that offers a wide range of advantages. It’s lightweight and easy to install, making repairs simpler than other materials like wood, plus it won’t rot, mold, or mildew over time. PVC trim is also extremely low maintenance and cost-effective, so while it may not be as decorative as some other trim options, it offers great value for the money.

Hardie Trim, on the other hand, is made from fiber cement board – a combination of wood fibers, Portland cement, and sand. While more labor-intensive and costly up front than PVC trim, Hardie Trim provides greater long-term durability against weathering due to its resistance to rotting, warping, or fading with age. In addition, this robust material looks great when painted, making it an attractive option for many homeowners looking for a classic finish on their home’s exterior.

Examples of different widths of James Hardie trim

Hardie Trim widths

Ultimately, though, there is no clear winner here – PVC trim might offer more profiles to create the architectural design of your dreams whereas Hardie Trim adds a more traditional style. Which option you decide upon will depend on your budget and what look you’re going for!

PVC trim and Hardie Trim are both popular choices for home exterior trim. Both types of boards have their own benefits and drawbacks, so it can be difficult to decide which is the best option for your home. If you’re still unsure after reading this article, contact us for more information or a consultation. We would be happy to help you choose the right type of trim board for your home!