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Weathertex vs Scyon Linea Cladding



Which is the right choice of cladding for your new home? Weathertex vs Scyon Linea Cladding


Being a builder of country homes, we often get numerous questions about the materials that are used on and in the homes, and the cladding is a classic example of one of these questions. And because we enjoy helping our customers, our approach to such questions is always open and honest, and so we wanted to put it out there as a blog for everyone to benefit from.


Now we want to point out right before we start that we have no affiliations with either the company Weathertex or James Hardie. We use both of their products on a regular basis and obviously have formed some opinions, but that’s not necessarily what this discussion is about – this is about explaining the ins and outs and leaving the decision to you.


First up, let’s quickly look at the 2 different products.


1. Weathertex makes a variety of different weatherboards (amongst a few other products) and the most common board we use is the Classic Smooth board. It’s made from reconstituted timber, compressed and then generally pre-primed. It’s a bit like the well-known Masonite product.

2. The Scyon Linea board is made by the James Hardie company, along with a large range of building products. It’s made from cement fibre (commonly called cement sheet), and is both un-primed and pre-primed.


Now let’s look at the differences between the 2 products in specific areas.


First up is the fire durability. Under the Bushfire standard that was introduced in 2009, a product has to meet various levels of a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) to meet different situations of risk. The Scyon Linea meets all levels right up to flame zone – it’s made from a product which is non-flammable. But interestingly enough, all of the other ratings below flame zone are to do with ember attack, not so much the flammability, and the Weathertex meets the first 2 levels – 12.5 and 19 – because of the density and treatment of the timber it’s made from. The Scyon is needed to meet the remaining BAL of 29 and 40.


Another attribute to look at is the size of the product. Now there are a range of sizes available, but the Scyon is considerably thicker – 16mm – instead of the 9mm of the Weathertex. James Hardie do also make a thinner board, but Weathertex don’t offer a thicker board that casts a deeper shadow at the overlap. Heights are fairly similar, ranging between 150mm for the Scyon up to 300mm for the Weathertex. The length of the boards are generally 4200mm for the Scyon and 3660mm for the Weathertex.


The next thing is cost. Pound for pound, Weathertex is cheaper. Of course, it depends where you buy it, what volumes you buy it in and what agreements you have with suppliers. But in the grand scheme they’re not that far apart. One of the reasons that the Scyon takes more out of your pocket is all the little add-ons – the corners, the sealant, the special screws, etc. So if it’s simply cost per MTR 2 of wall cover, then Weathertex is going to give you more bang for your buck.


The question of ease of installation comes up next. Because they’re different materials, they need slightly different installation methods, and interestingly enough, tradies find it quicker to put up the Weathertex than the Scyon Linea. This may be because of the heavier weight of the board, or because it’s widely agreed that it’s easier to cut timber than cement. And many of the Weathertex boards have a built-in alignment method that allows the tradie to spend less time making sure the boards are straight and level.


Maintenance is also a question we get. But it depends what you mean by maintenance! The material that Scyon Linea is made of isn’t going anywhere anytime soon – it’s a product that will last a long time. And the Weathertex has a 25 year guarantee so that’s got longevity as well. But in both cases it will often come down to the paint that’s put on the face of the product. The board itself might stay on the wall just fine for the next 50 years, but what will the paint look like? Terrible probably. So there’s probably not much difference between the two, but a pre-primed product will generally stay looking better in the long run.


Last but not least is the interesting fact that James Hardie are more well known than Weathertex. They’re a bigger company and we presume they have a lot bigger marketing budget than Weathertex, and so we often get people request the Hardie’s product because they feel they know it already, and have some hesitancy towards the Weathertex product because they haven’t heard of it. Some people like to only use a brand that they’re ‘familiar’ with but others aren’t fussed about this.


There are other subtle nuances that are beyond the scope of this blog such as availability, warranty claims and logistics, but one thing we can say is that both products serve a purpose and generally do it very well, and both companies are continuing to supply these products to builders every day and look to continue to do so well into the future.


So whether you use the Weathertex product or the Linea board is ultimately your choice, but we’ve noticed that it often comes down to 2 things – fit for purpose (ie, BAL rating) and aesthetics (the overall look of the finished product). So before making a hard and fast decision, we recommend talking to your designer, builder or architect about all the different aspects. Does it need a high BAL rating? Do you want a product that casts a deeper shadow at the laps for a more pronounced look? Is cost a key consideration? What skills will the tradies have?


You’ll find that the choice of product will become obvious as you work through these questions. And there’s no such thing as a wrong or right answer – there’s only the answer that will be correct for you based on your tastes and needs.


And as always, feel free to ask for more information!

Disclaimer. This blog is our opinion only. The information provided in our blogs is accurate and true to the best of our knowledge, but there may be omissions, errors or mistakes. The information presented in our blogs is for informational purposes only and we are not professionals, so the content we provide shouldn’t be taken as legal advice. We strongly recommend consulting with a professional before taking any sort of action. We reserve the right to change how we manage our blog and we may change the focus or content at any time.

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