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Business Advice4 min

Siding That’s a Cut Above

Siding installers use many different brands of circular saws, but their preferred saw may not be as important as the siding material they are cutting with it. Some builders can sometimes be a bit removed from the importance placed on saw choice and would probably rely on their subcontractors choice, like Brent Taylor. “I don’t have much of an opinion on that because I use subcontracted labor,” says Brent Taylor, owner of O.C. Taylor in Raleigh, North Carolina, who was featured in an episode of Designing Spaces on Lifetime Network renovating a century-old house using LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding.

“For cutting LP® SmartSide® siding, all you need is a circular saw with a blade for OSB or plywood,” says Oscar Trejo, an LP field technician in the Madison, Wisconsin area. Trejo uses a cordless Hitachi circular saw, but he says that there are many other great brands. Most installers prefer cordless saws because there’s seldom electric power on the jobsite.

“Almost any saw will do because LP SmartSide siding cuts and handles just like ordinary wood,” says Gordon Jacobsen from Karp Associates, the Connecticut company overseeing the renovation of the 2019 Idea House by the team at This Old House.

“I can cut five pieces of LP SmartSide siding at once with a Skilsaw, while cutting that much fiber cement would cause breakage,” says JB Homebuilding’s Eduilho DaSilva, Jr., who manages the trim and siding crews on the Idea House.

Cordless circular saws continue to get lighter and more sophisticated every year, but even the most basic models have no trouble cutting engineered wood siding with ease.