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Cedar vs Pine Siding: What are the Differences and Which is Better?

Updated: Mar 22

cedar vs pine siding

When it comes to adding value, beauty, and functionality to your home or building, few decisions matter more than choosing the right siding material.

It’s a decision that will impact everything from your home's aesthetic appeal to its resilience against harsh weather conditions. But when it comes to choosing between cedar vs pine siding, you may feel perplexed, frustrated, and unsure as to which is right for you.

We’re here to make the decision easier for you.

At Quality Cedar Products, we have seen firsthand the difference that high-quality cedar siding can make in a home's appearance and durability.

We believe that cedar, with its unique blend of natural beauty and robust performance, stands head and shoulders above other woods like pine. From its unparalleled aesthetic appeal to its longevity and ease of maintenance, cedar siding is a choice you won't regret.

Below, we’ll compare and contrast cedar and pine siding against one another and show you where each has an edge. From there, it’s just a matter of considering what matters most to you and picking your siding accordingly!

Quality Cedar Products can meet all your cedar board needs. This blog is informational only and not a replacement for expert advice. Please consult a professional before starting any building project as your needs and specification may vary and it may not reflect the most current building codes, regulations, or industry standards.

The Role of Siding Explained

Siding plays a vital role in safeguarding your home from external factors such as rain, snow, wind, and sun, all of which can have detrimental effects on the structure and integrity of your home.

Moreover, high-quality siding adds insulation to your home, helping maintain a comfortable temperature inside, regardless of the weather conditions outside.

But siding is not just about protection and insulation. It also significantly impacts the look and feel of your home. The siding material you choose can enhance your home's curb appeal, adding value and character to your property. It allows you to express your personal style and make a statement with your home's exterior.

Choosing the right siding material is therefore a balance of practicality and aesthetics. You need a material that provides excellent protection against the elements, requires minimal maintenance, and complements your home's overall design.

That's where the choice between cedar and pine siding comes into play. Each wood offers unique characteristics that can impact the longevity, appearance, and maintenance needs of your siding.

What are the Differences Between Cedar and Pine Siding?

Knowing how important siding is to the functionality and appearance of your home, it’s worth taking the time to fully understand the nuances of cedar siding and pine siding before choosing one. We’ll provide a brief overview of each below.

A Brief Overview of Cedar Siding

Cedar siding is an exceptional option for homeowners who prioritize aesthetics and longevity. Derived from the cedar tree, this type of siding is highly regarded for its natural beauty and resilience. The rich, warm hues of cedar wood range from reddish-brown to pale yellow, lending your home a timeless and elegant appearance.

Cedar siding is not only visually appealing but also highly durable. This natural wood is renowned for its resistance to decay, insect damage, and even harsh weather conditions. Thanks to its natural oils, cedar wood is remarkably resistant to rot, mold, and mildew, making it a popular choice for homes in both humid and arid climates.

In addition to its protective qualities, cedar siding offers excellent insulating properties. Its natural thermal resistance helps maintain a comfortable temperature within your home, regardless of the weather outside. This makes cedar siding a smart choice for energy-conscious homeowners looking to reduce heating and cooling costs.

Moreover, cedar siding can be customized to match your design preferences. It can be stained or painted in a variety of colors, allowing you to create the perfect aesthetic for your home. If you prefer a more natural look, cedar siding can be left untreated to develop a beautiful silver-gray patina over time.

A Brief Overview of Pine Siding

Pine siding, on the other hand, is known for its affordability and versatility. Sourced from pine trees, this type of siding is lighter in color, ranging from white to pale yellow.

Pine siding can be easily stained or painted to achieve a desired appearance, making it a popular choice for homeowners looking to personalize their homes.

Pine siding is often chosen for its cost-effectiveness. However, its lower price point comes with some compromises. While pine siding can be visually appealing, it is generally less durable and weather-resistant than cedar siding. Pinewood lacks the natural oils found in cedar, making it more susceptible to decay, rot, and insect infestations.

Pine siding also requires more regular maintenance to keep it in good condition. To ensure its longevity, pine siding needs to be treated and sealed regularly, especially in areas with high humidity or frequent temperature fluctuations.

While pine siding can provide an affordable alternative to other siding materials, homeowners should be prepared for the additional time and effort required for proper upkeep.

You may already be starting to see why many homeowners and builders prefer to work with cedar over pine. But, to provide more context and help you make the most informed decision possible, let’s compare and contrast cedar vs pine siding side by side below.

Cedar vs Pine Siding: Which is Better?

Let’s make one thing clear - both pine and cedar siding have their place. Either can serve you well aesthetically and functionally. It’s just a matter of choosing which makes more sense based on your budget, style preferences, location, and a few other factors.

But by the time we finish comparing cedar vs pine siding below, you’ll have complete clarity as to which is right for you. Let’s start with the appearance side of things.


Cedar siding is well-known for its rich, reddish-brown hue and attractive straight grain. It has a warm, natural appearance that many homeowners find appealing. The wood itself can be left untreated to age gracefully, developing a silver-gray patina over time, or it can be stained in a variety of colors to suit your home's style.

Pine siding also has a natural beauty, with a lighter, yellowish color and a more pronounced grain pattern. However, pine is more prone to knots and imperfections, which can affect the overall look of the siding. While some may appreciate the rustic charm of knotty pine, others might prefer the more uniform appearance of cedar.

If you’re building a rugged log cabin, maybe pine is fine. But for most homes, cedar wins easily from an appearance standpoint.

Durability & Longevity

Cedar is a naturally durable wood, resistant to rot, decay, and insect damage. This is one of its biggest advantages over other types of lumber.

Its natural oils and tannins make it highly resistant to moisture and harsh weather conditions, giving it a longer lifespan compared to other woods.

But, just how durable is western red cedar siding? Perhaps more importantly, how long does cedar siding last? We have related resources on both these topics, but just know this: cedar siding can last for decades if properly maintained.

We’ll talk maintenance below, but how does pine stack up compared to cedar from a durability and longevity standpoint?

Because pine lacks the natural resistance of cedar, it's more susceptible to rot, insects, and weather damage. As such, it has a reduced lifespan. Pine siding requires more frequent maintenance and treatment to achieve a similar level of durability as cedar, too, as we’ll discuss below.

The key takeaway here is that it’s not just pine that falls short in this regard, but frankly, any other type of lumber!

Maintenance Needs

While cedar siding is naturally resistant to many common threats, it still requires regular maintenance to keep its appearance and performance at its best. Cleaning, staining, or sealing every few years will help protect the wood and extend its lifespan.

This begs the question…is cedar siding hard to maintain? Not necessarily, especially in considering the maintenance needs of pine siding.

Pine siding requires more frequent and intensive maintenance to protect it from rot, insects, and weather damage. It needs regular sealing or staining, and homeowners must be vigilant for signs of wear or damage.

While both sidings will require routine maintenance, you’ll discover that cedar's natural resistance means it requires less frequent attention compared to pine.

You can learn more about how to care for cedar siding in our blog. We have tips on how to clean cedar siding, including guides on pressure washing cedar siding, treating cedar siding, and how to prep cedar siding for paint. But for now, let’s look at the cost side of things…


The cedar siding cost tends to be more expensive upfront due to its superior qualities and natural resistance. However, its longer lifespan and lower maintenance needs can make it a more cost-effective choice over time. Look at it through this lens and it’s the clear winner.

Pine siding is generally more affordable initially but may end up costing more in the long run due to higher maintenance needs and a shorter lifespan.


Cedar siding isn't just a pretty face; it also provides excellent insulation and sound-dampening qualities. So, is cedar siding a good insulator? Absolutely.

The natural properties of cedar wood make it an effective insulator, helping to keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Additionally, cedar's dense grain structure acts as a natural sound barrier, reducing noise from the outside world and creating a quieter, more peaceful living space.

Pine siding also offers insulation and sound-dampening properties, but not to the same extent as cedar. While pine siding can still help regulate your home's temperature and reduce outside noise, it doesn't perform as well as cedar in these areas.

Environmental Considerations

Cedar trees grow more slowly, and harvesting them can have a greater impact on the environment. However, cedar's longer lifespan and natural resistance reduce the need for chemical treatments, making it a more eco-friendly choice over time.

Pine trees grow faster, making them a more renewable resource for siding. But, pine siding requires more frequent treatment with chemicals to protect it from damage, which can have a negative environmental impact. In the end, this is sort of a wash.

So, Which Should You Use: Cedar vs Pine Siding?

By now the answer should be clear as to which is best for most individuals, but as with all things, there is no one size fits all answer in the cedar vs pine siding debate.

The decision between cedar and pine siding ultimately comes down to your personal needs, budget, and style preferences. Taking these factors into account, you should be able to make a decision that aligns with your specific needs and preferences.

Regardless of whether you opt for cedar or pine, ensure you source high-quality materials to achieve the best results.

Whether you’re building from scratch or looking to replace cedar siding, there’s one name you can trust as you look for a provider of quality cedar products: it’s in our name, after all!

Trust Quality Cedar Products For the Best Selection of Cedar Siding in North America!

When it comes to choosing the best western red cedar siding, look no further than Quality Cedar Products. Our commitment to excellence is evident in our top-notch cedar siding, which we still sort and grade by hand ourselves.

This ensures you get the quality material you deserve - and we stand behind that statement with a satisfaction guarantee which extends over the course of your project. If you’re less than satisfied just let us know and we’ll make it right.

We're renowned for our high-quality products, impeccable service, and a wide range of options that cater to all your cedar siding needs. Choose Quality Cedar Products, and you're choosing a trusted partner that values both quality and sustainability.

We also have all your other lumber needs covered, including cedar deck boards, cedar fencing (including sound barrier fencing), cedar soffit, and more. At this point, though, it’s time to bring this conversation on cedar vs pine siding to a close.

Final Thoughts on Cedar vs Pine Siding

Cedar and pine both have their merits as siding options, but cedar stands out for its exceptional durability, natural beauty, and resistance to harsh weather conditions and insects.

While pine may be a more budget-friendly choice initially, cedar's long-term benefits make it a cost-effective and value-adding option. The rich, varied appearance of cedar siding can enhance your home's curb appeal and make a lasting impression.

We encourage you to consider your local climate, desired aesthetics, budget, and environmental values when making your choice. If cedar siding aligns with your needs, Quality Cedar Products is your go-to source for the finest cedar siding in North America.

So, reach out today to learn more or request a quote and discover firsthand why we’re the premier choice for western red cedar lumber!

G&B Wholesale Lumber Incorporated does not assume any liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information provided in this blog post. The reader is solely responsible for any actions taken based on the information presented. Any reliance on the information is at the reader's own risk.

G&B Wholesale Lumber Incorporated is not responsible for any loss, injury, or damage that may occur as a result of following the suggestions, tips, or recommendations provided in this blog post. Building projects involve inherent risks, and it is essential to exercise caution, obtain proper permits, and engage qualified professionals to ensure safety and compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. The inclusion of external links, references, or recommendations in this blog post does not constitute endorsement or guarantee the quality, reliability, or suitability of the linked sources. The reader should independently verify the information and assess its relevance to their specific circumstances. The author reserves the right to modify, update, or remove the content of this blog post at any time without prior notice. It is recommended to check for the most recent updates or consult with professionals to ensure the information is current and applicable. By reading this blog post, the reader acknowledges and accepts the above disclaimer and agrees to use the information provided responsibly and at their own discretion.

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