Story at a glance:

  • Beach House Shake offers the appearance of natural cedar shingles without the risk.
  • Beach House Shake maintains its color over time, thanks in part to APV Engineered Coatings.
  • Beach House Shake is fast and easy to install compared to natural cedar.

For many years, abundant and naturally decay-resistant old growth cedar was the preferred material to protect a home’s exterior. Old growth cedar is a dense wood that’s less prone to rot. However, because of forest depletion and an intense drive to save existing old growth cedar, while still providing a sustainable product for the industry, the market turned to new growth cedar.

New growth cedar grows at a much faster rate and is more susceptible to absorbing moisture—leading to rot and decay, discoloration, streaking, and splitting over time.

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Photo courtesy of Derby Building Products

Cedar goes through significant aesthetic changes during its life cycle, and significant effort is required to maintain its desired look. For example, when fresh Eastern White Cedar is first installed, it is a light brown color. As soon as it’s installed and exposed to the elements, especially in coastal conditions, its color will begin to fade to a light gray. And, since sunlight does not hit every part of the exterior with the same intensity, the cedar will fade unevenly—so some shake may remain brown while others fade to gray. In addition, cedar shakes that receive more moisture than others may begin to mold and turn dark gray or black—not an ideal aesthetic for a premium-priced exterior surface.

While there are many treatments that can be done to cedar pre- or post-installation to alter the look—painting, staining, or even bleaching—all of them require reapplication every few years to maintain the look, and they hide the true beauty of natural cedar.

What is Beach House Shake?

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Photo courtesy of Derby Building Products

Today alternative materials are used to mimic the beauty of cedar without the ongoing upkeep.

The best example is Beach House Shake, which offers the look of natural cedar shingles while eliminating concerns about moisture damage or decay, compromised aesthetics, and the need for continual maintenance.

Beach House Shake is engineered in different shades—from fresh-cut to gracefully aged—and maintains its color over time, thanks in part to an OEM-applied coating, KAPGUARD® with Kynar® by APV Engineered Coatings.

The Benefits

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Photo courtesy of Derby Building Products

KAPGUARD with Kynar coatings have been tested and approved to withstand the toughest conditions—from high UV and salt air environments at the coast to lakefront or mountainside homes that face hail. The coating helps the Beach House Shake resist the uneven weathering, discoloration, dirt accumulation, rot, and mildew that are common with cedar shingles.

In addition to aesthetics, installation is a key factor that drives contractors to look for alternative cedar options. Shingles are typically applied one at a time and require a cedar breather to be installed behind them. The process often requires a skilled installer who knows the art of cedar installation. These considerations typically mean the installation process can be painstakingly slow.

Beach House Shake is fast and easy to install. It can be installed with a pneumatic nail gun and requires seven fasteners for every 21 shingles. Natural cedar typically requires two fasteners per shingle. Reducing the number of fasteners is especially helpful in coastal regions where natural cedar is most prevalent and installers must use stainless steel fasteners to avoid corrosion from airborne salt. By reducing the number of fasteners, the project costs are lowered, too.

Cedar can be very expensive when you consider the material, installation, and long-term maintenance costs. Many people don’t consider all of those aspects when purchasing natural cedar. While the goal for many homeowners is to purchase products that are beautiful and low-maintenance, the reality is that with cedar, regular maintenance is required to retain a presentable finish and long-term protection to the home.

Derby Building Products backs the long-term performance of Beach House Shake with a 20-year Beautiful Freedom Limited Warranty (in addition to a 50-year Performance Plus Limited Warranty) to ensure homeowners get a look that will last for years to come—a guarantee that’s simply not available with natural cedar.