Dutch Lap vs Clapboard Siding – Which is the Better One?

Want to upgrade your home to combat awful weather and style? But can’t choose a siding material? We understand how confusing that is for you. 

So, you’re asking which one you should go for — dutch lap vs clapboard siding?

Dutch lap sidings are known for more durability and modern look. And need low maintenance. Also, they cost more than clapboard. But, Clapboard sidings are modestly durable and with a traditional design. Also, they are cheaper. And often require maintenance. But costs also depend on their materials.

But that’s not all. Want to know the core differences in detail? Keep on reading.

What is Siding?

If you are new to the topic of house siding, don’t worry. We’ll explain to you what it is in simpler terms.

House siding, better known as wall cladding. It is the installation of protective materials on the exterior side of the wall. It is commonly used for adding curb appeal. Furthermore, it combats adverse weather conditions too.

Comparison Factors

Now that we have an idea about siding, let’s have a look at the comparison between Dutch Lap and Clapboard sidings.

Both of these are popular choices for wall cladding. Not only their designs but various other aspects, give them their own identity.

Enough talking. Let’s dive right in.


Dutch Lap

Comes with overlapping horizontal rows. They have an angular carve that gives a concave face to them. Also, they have a notch at the bottom.

The notch casts shadows, giving it a trendy look.  However, the angular carve has to be installed to get an elegant appearance.

It is a popular choice for enhanced customizations.


Clapboards are a traditional yet popular choice as well. It is also known as lap siding or level siding.

Although its designs are different region-wise, it has a very simple appearance. It is installed horizontally and layered. One side of the clapboard is thin and the other, where the former lies under the latter edge.

It is a popular choice for frame homes. Clapboards made from cedar can give a rustic, premium look to the house.

A lot of people mistake clapboards for traditional siding due to their appearance. In that case, knowing the features of traditional siding may also be useful.

Used Materials

Dutch Lap

Before, Dutch Lap sidings were made from timber, cedar, pine, or wood. They are still available. But, currently, it is being produced with Vinyl, which is more cost-efficient. 

Dutch Lap sidings made from vinyl are lighter, cuttable, and installable.  It is a good choice for newbies. Also, you get a lot of color choices for Dutch lap vinyl sidings!

However, do not confuse Dutch Lap sidings made of vinyl with straight vinyl sidings.


Usually, wood and timber are used to make sidings of clapboards. Red cedar is one of the best choices for clapboard from wood.

Other options include soft and hardwood. Plastic, metal, and fiber cement are also used for clapboard materials. 


Dutch Lap

Dutch Lap sidings are very durable because they last from 20 to 50 years. But they can vary depending on the material.

All of them can combat severe temperatures, pests, and abuse. Also, it protects homes from storms, snow, and rainwater. 

Hence, choose a material that provides enhanced robustness and reliability.


They have moderate durability. It also depends on how much maintenance is done by the homeowner. If maintained well, they last from 14 to 40 years.

If the clapboard siding is made from wood, it would need maintenance from time to time.

For vinyl clapboards, it is durable and doesn’t need high maintenance.


Dutch Lap

Dutch Lap sidings have angled boards. Hence, the installation process has to be done differently. That’s why it may cost more than clapboards. 

Also, wooden Dutch lapse cost more than vinyl Dutch laps. That is, even wooden clapboards would be more expensive than vinyl Dutch laps. 

And, brighter colors also cost more.


Wood is a costly material, vinyl clapboards are a better option. Because, it is easier to install, maintain, and suitable for DIY customizations.

But wooden clapboards are still easier to make as they are plain and straight cut. Hence, there are no complications in manufacturing. 


If the material of your sidings are vinyl, here’s how it’s done-

You require a flat surface to install the siding. Line the walls with ½ inch thick sheets of rigid foam boards. The foam offers insulation and a flat nailing surface.

Nail the foam and siding with galvanized shingle nails.

However, installation for wooden sidings requires extra tools. Hence, higher installation costs.

Benefits of Siding

If you’ve come this far and still have doubts about installing siding, we’ve got you!

Here are some benefits that you can get from protective siding –

  • An improved appearance that you can customize 
  • Increases the efficiency of energy by adding insulation, reducing air leakage, and the reducing energy bill
  • Increases the value of homes by 80% of the project price.
  • Help homes stay mold-free and alert you about any water leakage.

Which to Choose?

So, it seems that the Dutch Lap siding seems like a better choice. 

Its concave and angular structure gives more depth to homes. Also, it prevents water from accumulating.

On average, Dutch lap slidings last almost one decade more than clapboard sidings.

So, the Dutch Lap sidings seem more worth the bucks than clapboard sidings.


What kind of colors would look the best on Dutch lap sidings?

Brighter and lighter colors look best on Dutch lap sidings. Angular installations cast shadows on top of the boards under them, giving the home an edge. But, this effect won’t be visible in darker colors.

Do I need to paint before installing sidings?

Painting or preparation isn’t required before installing siding.

How to tell if my siding needs to be replaced?

Fungus, seams separating, moisture inside the property, warped appearance, swelling, etc. 

Can installing siding affect the home interior?

The siding installation process isn’t very invasive. At most, it may rattle, shake or shift anything hanging on your walls.

Which siding is the cheapest?

Whatever style you go for, choosing vinyl as the material would cost you the lowest. Vinyl comes in all kinds of colors.

Final Verdict

So, we have reached the end of our article. We hope that we could help you choose between Dutch lap sidings and clapboard siding.

At the end of the day, it all comes down to your preferences and needs. Choosing a siding 

will depend on your budget, plans, preference on appearance, etc.

But if you want to go for simplicity, choose clapboard siding. But if you want to go for a more modern appeal with higher durability, choose Dutch lap sidings.

If you have any more queries about Dutch lap vs clapboard siding, leave them in the comments below. 

Feedbacks are highly appreciated!

See you next time.