Natural Stone Veneer Siding
Planning on purchasing real natural stone veneers? We compiled a list of some of the key considerations you should take into account prior to making a decision, by creating a natural stone veneer siding comparison chart that covers other natural stone alternatives. In addition, the following comparison chart would help you as well to better understand the pros and cons of natural stone panels.
However, since the various characteristics of different stone and rock siding options cannot be conveyed by words or images alone, we have also partnered with leading online stone siding wholesalers, and invite you to choose up to 5 Free Stone Siding Samples of any kind, including natural stone veneer samples. All samples ship free, and would arrive within 1-2 business days straight to your door.
Obtaining free samples would allow you to really hold down the materials and test their quality and other attributes (e.g., durability, scratch-resistance, dimensions, feeling of the texture, color matching, etc.)
straight from the comfort of your own home. To choose and receive your free samples, simply scroll down to the bottom of the following comparison chart and click on the button in the relevant column.
In addition, you can click here to get a free installation cost estimate for your project.
Natural Stone Veneer vs. Cultured Stone vs. Faux Stone - Comparison Chart:
|Thin Natural Stone Veneer Panels||Cultured Stone
(Veneer & Individual)
|Faux Stone Panels|
|Durability||Extreme durability; various ancient castles that were built centuries ago from natural stone and are still standing today can undoubtedly affirm the extreme durability of natural stone.||Very good durability, sturdy and designed to last for decades.||Very good durability, Can stand up to a certain amount of abuse, though not as durable as cultured or natural stone, as it can be scratched easier in case of an impact by a sharp object. It is recommended to get samples and experiment with them in order to compare.|
|What is it made of||Natural stone veneers are derived from real natural stone, such as slate, quartzite, travertine and sandstone, which were gathered from quarries and then processed into thin stone veneers.||Portland cement and aggregates (to gain a heft and feel that would mimic real stone), plus iron oxides (to gain the look of a real stone). Created with molds that mimic the appearance of natural stone.||Composites of a high-density polymer named polyurethane, that allows for high impact resistance, and also offers significant thermal and noise insulation (with an R-value of about 4.5 per inch of thickness).|
|Thickness||3/4″ - 1 1/4″||1″ - 2 1/2″||1 1/4″ - 1 3/4″|
|Areas commonly used||Both Exterior and Interior (Such as Interior accent walls, skirting, and Fireplace surrounds).||Both exterior and interior cladding (including fireplaces and backsplashes)||Both exterior and interior (walls, commercial applications, skirts, window trims, home siding (partial as well), and more. When installed as fireplace veneer, faux stone needs be away from the open flame by at least 12".|
|Dimensions||Panels: 6″ wide x 24″ length (corners available as well).||According to specific product chosen:
5 Sq ft Individual stones;
5″ wide x 20″ length panels;
1″ - 4″ wide x 5″-18″ length panels; (corners available as well).
|According to specific product chosen:
Drystack / Slatestone / Ledgestone panels: 6″-8″ wide x43″-47″ length;
Random rock panels: 13″-15″ wide x46″-48″ length.
(corners available as well).
|Appearance||Natural earthy beauty, with each stone having a unique pattern that reflects how it was formed in the earth. Unlike cultured or faux stone which are not through and through natural, when you chip real stone, it would still retain its natural texture and appearance.||Very similar feel and texture of natural stone, that makes it hard to tell apart.||Thanks to today's technology, Faux siding panels can visually look just like the real thing. It is recommended to get samples of the specific product and see for yourself.|
|Weight||7-12 lbs per square foot;
A Thin stone veneer are relatively heavy, yet lighter than a thick full-bed stone; thin stone veneers are cut to their thin dimensions, in order to make it as lightweight as possible, which allows reduced shipping costs and more installations options.
|About 70% the weight of natural stone, and therefore feels close to genuine stone.||Very lightweight: each panel weighs only a few pounds (about one pound per square foot), making it easy to work with.|
|Cost (material prices)||$4.50 - $10.00 /sq ft;
Relatively high shipping costs, due to the weight of real natural stone.
|$4.00 - $11.00 /sq ft;
Lower shipping costs than natural stone, since cultured stone is lighter.
|$6.00 - $9.00 /sq ft;
Relatively very low shipping costs, as faux material is extremely lightweight. It is also significantly cost effective in the sense of reduced labor costs due to its easy installation.
|Total Cost (with Installaion)|
|Climatic Suitability||Suitable for all kinds of climates.||Suitable for all kinds of climates.||Essentially can be used in all climates, however in the very long run (decades), cultured stone and natural stone would probably be more durable in extreme climate conditions (in external use).|
|Methods of Installation||Mortar.||Mortar; Several manufactured stone products allow for a mortarless installation, with simple drilling.||Drill down or glued (Screws or adhesives).|
|Ease of Installation||The innovative panel system makes natural stone siding installation relatively easy, as the panels are locking in to each other similar to puzzle pieces.||Relatively easy due to panel system and lower weight compared to genuine stone. Individual cultured stones can be found as well.||Easy and allows for a DIY Installation, as opposed to natural stone siding or cultured stone (which require a higher level of craftsmanship) hardly no power tools are required, the panels allow for quick installation and can be easily cut (with any carpentry saw cutting tool), no dealing with messy mortar or masonry skills required.|
|Care and Maintenance||Sealing is required for all natural stones, in order to protect them from moisture and additional elements. In general, it is recommended to avoid acidic cleaners. Follow the specific product instructions.||Very low maintenance, which makes it a popular choice. periodic power washing or hosing down is enough (about two times a year). A water based concrete sealer should be applied only once, right after the installation.||Virtually no maintenance is required; no sealing is required. May be cleaned with a garden hose or with a soft cloth.|
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