Dutch Lap Siding vs. Traditional Siding

a wood home with traditional Dutch lap siding

Here’s How to Compare Dutch Lap vs. Traditional Siding for Your Home

Homeowners interested in siding installation have many excellent options to choose from. Choosing between standard horizontal styles or more visually striking options like board and batten will completely alter the look of your home. And even for those who prefer the more typical horizontal orientation, there are still more decisions when evaluating traditional siding vs. Dutch lap. 

As the Midwest’s leading siding installers, our team at Xtreme Exteriors has seen how each of the many available styles of siding can transform the look of a home. Today, we’re evaluating the most common horizontal styles of siding, Dutch lap and traditional, to help readers decide on which type will be best for their home.

What Is Lap Siding?

Both of these options—Dutch lap and traditional—are different variations of the same general siding style: lap siding. Lap siding is perhaps the most standard style one might think of, as it involves horizontal boards that are layered over one another and form a small overlap (hence the name).

While this was once done using natural wood boards that would overlap one another, wood is no longer commonly used for siding in favor of materials like vinyl and fiber cement. These materials are instead shaped into this lap siding appearance to create the same effect.

Traditional Lap Siding

Traditional lap siding, sometimes also called “clapboard,” is generally the most popular style of siding in the United States. While certain areas of the country may vary, this style of siding creates a very typical appearance.

This style features a horizontal orientation with overlapping boards (or panels shaped into an overlapping appearance). It generally creates simple, clean lines around the entire building.

Traditional lap siding is often chosen due to its versatility. Because it is so ubiquitous, traditional lap siding just looks natural when paired with a wide variety of architectural styles, roofing systems, window styles, and more. 

Dutch Lap Siding

At first glance, Dutch lap siding may look very similar when compared vs. traditional siding. It also features a horizontal orientation with overlapping pieces that protect from moisture intrusion.

However, Dutch lap differs in the way that it is shaped, with notches at the bottom of each plank that the next board will slot into. The top portion then angles inward, accentuating the appearance of the planks by creating different shades of light and shadow.

Historically, these notches were carved into the bottom of wood planks. Since natural wood is generally not used, sections of vinyl siding are shaped to emulate this appearance.

Choosing Between Dutch vs. Traditional Lap Siding

Which siding is best for a given home will largely depend on the preference of the homeowner. As mentioned, traditional lap siding is more common and often seen as more versatile vs. Dutch lap siding. That said, choosing Dutch lap siding is a great way to subtly set your home apart compared to a more striking vertical style like board and batten.

Overall, each of these styles works well with a wide range of homes. We highly recommend trying out various styles using our visualizer tool to see which you like best on your own home!

Xtreme Exteriors: Leading Siding Installers in the Midwest

At Xtreme Exteriors, our team is renowned as the top siding installers in Middle America. Our team works with a wide range of leading manufacturers and styles, including beautiful traditional lap siding options from James Hardie.

Our skilled professionals have decades of siding installation experience, and we’re standing by to transform and renew your home’s curb appeal. Reach out to our team to get started or find an Xtreme Exteriors location near you: 

Nixa, MO | Shawnee, KS | Rogers, AR | Pittsburg, KS | Goodlettsville, TN