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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'll say right up front that I know very, very little about siding installations, or Hardie Plank; I'm a painter and just found this forum. However, my dad's house was resided two years ago using Hardie Plank, prefinished. in one area of the house, the back of a detached garage, some of the finish is flaking off the siding, starting from the bottom edge of the planks.

The area that's flaking off is fairly high off the ground. One piece of the Hardie Plank began flaking during the first winter it was on the house; this winter, the piece directly above it started flaking off as well. There are other boards in that area that show some bubbling along the bottom edge of the product, which looks like it's about to start failing as well. (I can't post photos because I just registered.)

All the other product on the house seems to be fine, including the back wall of the house facing the same direction. All the product was purchased and installed at the same time; unfortunately, the original contractor was a casualty of the economy.

To me, this appears to be a defect in the finish on the siding. I would assume the siding itself is still viable. My dad has about 20 boards leftover from the original installation, stored in a dry basement. Hardie's warranty would offer the price of the affected product times two, which is a miniscule amount at the moment. My questions, if you'd be so kind:

1) Better to remove the affected and questionable pieces and replace with new? Or repaint?

2) Could it have just been a few boards in that particular lot of product that are failing? Or does he have to worry about the entire house having an issue?

3) Has anyone else encountered something similar? The product seems to have a good reputation, and these problems are not in the area of cuts the contractor made or close to the ground, it just seems to be a general finish issue.

4) Any tips on prep/priming for painting if it's better to go that route?

Thanks for any assistance.
 

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Hardie paint issue

Based on my experience, you should immediately contact James Hardie and be prepared to wait a long time for a customer representative to deal with your issue. The prefinished siding should have a 15 year warranty but company response is slow to non-existent. I'm in the middle of an issue with Hardie right now where of 72 prefinished trim boards shipped to the home, only 21 were usable:mad:. Unfortunately Hardie only manufactures the prefinished trim on their schedule so this has put the job seriously behind schedule.

The distributors have diligently searched all over the country for stocks of the particular color (cobblestone) but the James Hardie representative is always in another location. Since 12 of the 21 good trim boards were shipped from North Dakota to Virginia without any problems in a reorder shipment, :thumbup: that means only 9 of 60 boards delivered in two different original batches were any good. The rest showed stress fractures that broke cleanly when picked up. That indicates a probable manufacturing issue and quality control problem which is also likely with your paint issue. Since you don't know if the problem will spread, I suggest getting your issue in front of a factory rep as soon as possible but realize it may be weeks or longer before you can actually see this person whom I'm told does exist.
 

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This has been a recurring problem & what may lead to the factory finish being discontinued. Try contacting a local rep or dealer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm happy to report that we had an excellent experience with Hardie last spring; we sent in the claim form, they sent someone out to look at it a couple weeks later, he agreed it was not due to installation issues but due to a problem with the finish. He also looked at the entire house carefully and noted a few things about the installation that he wasn't 100 percent happy with, so he added those to his report. Once he filed his report, Hardie scheduled a crew to come replace the product in question, the product arrived on the driveway the day before they were scheduled, the repairs were made, jobsite was left spotless, overall a painless process which didn't cost a dime.

He was unable to say why the finish was flaking on that one area of the house, but speculated that the primer may have been at fault, perhaps the sprayer had an issue or the primer ran short and wasn't noticed immediately before the line was stopped. There have been no issues since with the original siding or the replacement pieces.
 

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Scuttlebut has it that the siding was too wet when they finished it. Unconfirmed but it makes sense.
 
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