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Q:How are 4x8 fiber-cement siding panels installed onto a house?
A:In general, the fiber-cement panels are installed vertically with framing provided at all vertical and horizontal edges. The vertical panel edges must be joined over a stud. A water-resistive barrier is required over the house sheathing. The panels are fastened with corrosion-resistant siding nails driven 3/8-in. from the panel edges (and 2 inches away from the corners). The vertical edges can be butted together, covered with battens or caulked. All horizontal joints require Z-flashing. The exposed nail heads should be caulked/sealed, and the factory-primed panels need to be coated with an exterior-grade latex paint.
Q:What is the best way to add color to a concrete project?
A:If you haven’t yet constructed the project, companies such as Quikrete offer Liquid Cement Color, which is a coloring agent that is mixed with water and then added to dry concrete mix. Available in Red, Brown, Buff, Charcoal and Terra Cotta, these concrete pigments will add permanent integral color throughout a concrete project. If the project is already constructed, you can use a Penetrating Concrete Stain, which is opaque in appearance and provides deep, rich matte color highlighted by the natural variations in the concrete surface. Ideal for garage floors, driveways, sidewalks and patios, penetrating stains will not peel and are available in colors such as charcoal, gray, walnut brown, burnt orange. The widest array of color choices will come from painting the project, but painting is not recommended for any areas exposed to foot traffic or regular wear. To paint concrete, you’ll need a masonry sealer, concrete primer (block primer), and elastomeric masonry paint.