How to choose decorative panels for exterior wall decoration at home

The construction market offers a wide range of materials for finishing the exterior walls of the house. Decorative panels combine moderate cost, high quality noise and heat insulation and a presentable appearance. With the help of the available material, the exterior is designed in accordance with various stylistic concepts, but without the use of natural stone or brick, which are several times more expensive. Decorative panels trim as private houses, and office buildings, high-rise buildings. With their help, the building will acquire a solid, respectable look and a special comfort. Any type of decorative panels for exterior walls of the house imitates the texture of the surface of a certain material. There are a lot of color variations: from traditional natural shades to bright, catchy tones. Decorative panels are made of metal, clinker, fiber cement, porcelain. Let's talk about the types of decor for decoration, the features of each type and areas of application.

Advantages and disadvantages of finishing the facade panels

Decorative panels are used not only as decoration for external walls. They perfectly protect the house from cold or street noise. Depending on the type of material from which the panels are made, their technical characteristics also vary. Most types have several advantages:

  1. Reliability and durability. Mechanical damage to the coating is not terrible.
  2. High-quality sound insulation. The option is ideal for homes with "cardboard" walls.
  3. Thermal insulation. The panels, despite their decorative effect, efficiently save particles of heat, which becomes a salvation for buildings in which heating systems cannot cope with loads.
  4. Relatively light weight compared to natural stone or brick for decoration.
  5. The composition of the materials includes special coloring pigments that do not fade under sunlight. Also, the panels have a wide range of textures and colors, which are extremely rare among natural materials.
  6. Decorative material is completely unattractive for insect pests, fungus and mold.
  7. Long service life. Of course, decorative panels cannot compare with natural materials, but manufacturers constantly try new technologies that allow increasing the duration of their operation.
  8. Relatively low price. Decorative panels are suitable for budget repairs, when you want to spend a little, but get a beautiful result.
  9. Easy to care. Wall panels for the facade, as a rule, do not require painting, puttying or priming. They are simply attached to the surface and the material is ready for use.

Decorative panels simply mount. Moreover, it is possible to work with the material at any time of the year, except for severe winter frosts. Before installation, the surface should be relieved only from strongly protruding defects.

Types of panels on the material and imitation

Decorative panels are made from various (mostly artificial) materials. Composites occupy a special niche in the market. These materials are based on mixtures of organic and inorganic components. As a result of the application of various technologies and experiments with compositions, manufacturers periodically present new products with improved characteristics. The search for the perfect material that perfectly protects the house from frost and heat, keeps heat, will weigh little and respectable looks, continues to this day. Consider the most popular types of wall panels for decorating the facades of houses, their technical characteristics, advantages, disadvantages and spheres of application.

Facade siding

Front siding - a fairly common material that is very popular among the owners of private houses. Initially, wooden boards were used, which began to be laid using a special overlap technology. Previously used another technique - "seam in the seam." When the boards are overlapped, there are no seams-gaps between them, which prevents rainwater and precipitation from falling under the panels, thereby protecting both them and the walls of the house. The wood did not last long, since two centuries ago there were no special formulations for processing. Polyvinyl chloride, better known as plastic, replaced the tree. PVC siding has established itself as a long-lived material. On average, its service life reaches 50 years. PVC panels do not need to be systematically treated with antifungal compounds. If the surface is dirty, it is easy to clean it with plain water from a hose. However, plastic panels have disadvantages:

  • They can melt under sunshine on particularly hot days. This is not about the usual summer temperature, but about the rare cases when even asphalt coating softens from stuffiness.
  • PVC is sensitive enough to mechanical damage. If a cobblestone is thrown into the front of the house, a hole with fractured edges is formed on the panels.

After the PVC panels appeared metal siding. The material is durable, durable, but may be susceptible to corrosion if the manufacturers did not process it properly. Plastic siding has the richest range of colors and the widest range of textures. Most often, its surface imitates expensive natural materials. Wooden panels look aesthetically and neatly, despite the "poor" brown range of colors. Metal is usually painted in one tone without patterns. Although the advantages of the latter type of siding are obvious, wood and plastic panels do not leave the market, as well as they have their own buyers. Material is trimmed mainly facades of private houses and the outer walls of offices, which are located in high-rise buildings.

Ground siding

Most at the mention of the word "siding" immediately represent long "boards". This is really the most common type. And in fact there is another type of siding - basement. The panels have impressive dimensions (rectangular fragments) and are made only from metal or special polymer compositions. Neither polyvinyl chloride nor wood is used for the manufacture of this decorative material. As it becomes clear from the name, initially it was used only for finishing basements. The lower part of the building is exposed to more aggressive environmental influences, therefore, it needs to be protected more reliably. Due to the high strength, high-quality sound insulation and beautiful appearance, this type of siding began to finish the entire facade completely, and not just its base. However, the cost of one sheet is much higher than that of ordinary panels.


Although the range of colors and textures in basement siding is quite diverse, the most popular option is imitation of brick and stone. Neat panels cover the most unsightly walls and give the house a neat and beautiful look.

Fiber cement panels

Fiber cement panels are made from a mixture of sand and cement with the addition of special microparticles (cellulose, fiberglass, mineral additives). The latter component is responsible for regulating the level of humidity in a range that is optimal at certain temperatures (adapts to environmental conditions). Also, micro-granules act as a reinforcing agent. Its content in the material does not exceed 10%. The surface of fiber cement panels is coated with a special protective compound. The material is heat and frost resistant (withstands more than 100 cycles), durable, fireproof, characterized by low cost and excellent sound insulation qualities. Fiber cement panels are produced in the form of large slabs. The surface can be textured (with imitation of stone or brick) or smooth. Material is used for full and partial wall cladding of private houses and low office buildings. Additional staining is often required.

Fiber cement boards were the first to use the Japanese. In the Land of the Rising Sun, more than 1000 variants of textures and material colors are produced. Sometimes fiber cement panels are called Japanese, paying tribute to the discoveries.

Wood-polymer composite

Wood-polymer composite or facade WPC is produced in the form of wide boards, which, like siding, mounted overlap. The material is made from crushed to the fibers of wood chips and polymers (usually polyvinyl chloride). The percentage of components may vary greatly depending on the conditions in which the panels will be used. Wood is mixed with the polymer component and pressed. The result is a durable, textured material that does not contribute to the development of mold and mildew, due to the nonorganic composition. WPC has a low thermal conductivity, frost resistance. It is fireproof, does not absorb moisture, is easily mounted, provides high-quality sound insulation and is not afraid of contact with chemical reagents. Use WPC panels for exterior decoration of the walls of cottages, office and public buildings. Due to a wide range of colors and textures, the material is used to design exteriors in various styles: from modern high tech to light Provence.

Since the main component of the WPC is wood, the material is classified as environmentally friendly, the coating does not emit any harmful substances during operation.

Porcelain stoneware

Ceramic granite is produced by pressing and subsequent firing of the slip. It is a mixture of feldspar, water, quartz sand and white-burning clay. Initially, porcelain stoneware was used exclusively for finishing floors that were subjected to increased loads. Gradually, the material began to be considered as a variant of decorative cladding. After that, his appearance has undergone dramatic changes. The line of colors was expanded, as coloring oxides were added to the slip. They are evenly distributed in the semi-molten mixture during roasting. Coloring oxides give different shades to the finished porcelain stoneware. However, to reduce the cost of decorative panels, pigments began to be added directly to the surface of the tiles, soaking only the top layer.


The material is classified by thickness, size and scope. They produce ceramic granite in the form of tiles (from 5x5 cm to 120x360 cm). Large panels, if necessary, subjected to waterjet cutting. The thicker the plate, the higher its cost. For finishing thresholds and steps use a special type of porcelain stoneware with a rough anti-slip texture. The material is used for cladding the walls of cottages, private homes and state-owned buildings of several floors. Cold-resistant porcelain stoneware (withstands more than 25 cycles), heavy-duty, does not support combustion. Pigments on the surface of the material do not fade with time, maintaining a respectable appearance. The material badly passes heat and is not afraid of moisture, provides a high noise isolation.

Clinker panels

The clinker is produced from shale polymer clay and additives by firing at high temperatures. The material is available in three forms:

  1. Paving stone Used for decorating tracks.
  2. Tile. It is used for interior and exterior walls.
  3. Brick. Used for cladding buildings outside.

The material received its original name due to the specific sound ("blade"), which is made by the bricks in the collision. According to the technology, clinker is burned to full baking. In addition to chamotte clay, it contains feldspar and minerals. The clinker is refractory, frost-resistant and very durable. The material has a rich assortment of colors (from red to light gray) and a rough surface texture, which is typical for a simple brick. Clinker is used for wall cladding of private houses, office buildings and low-rise cottages. By weight, the material is classified as heavy. The clinker is located in the middle of the price range of decorative panels.

Metal plates

Metal plates are made of galvanized steel or aluminum, a layer of which is coated with polyvinyl chloride. The basis of the panels on the back side is treated with anti-corrosion compounds. Metal plates are available in the form of "boards" (siding) or "bricks". On the front side of the polymer layer protects the surface from moisture. Metal plates are painted in soothing colors and bright shades. The texture of the material imitates the surface of a stone, brick or wood. The latter option is particularly popular, since natural wood for facade finishing on the outside is impractical. Metal plates easily pass heat, so the building should not be insulated with this material. Paneling private houses and high-rise buildings. When facing it is recommended to use an additional layer of insulation.

Sandwich panels

Sandwich panels are available in the form of rectangular plates. The material is multi-layered. On the "cut" you can see the layers of insulation, vapor barrier, metal and plastic. Sandwich panels have a long service life, reliably retain heat inside the house and prevent the ingress of moisture. This option is ideal for those buildings whose walls are too thin and are not designed for the harsh domestic climate. Sandwich panels are available in various colors: from acidic shades to soothing colors. With a strong decrease in temperature (less than 20 degrees), the seams between the panels are frozen. Unfortunately, the material is quite fragile: it is easily damaged both during installation and during use. Sandwich panels are used primarily for cladding private homes.

Neat front panels of light shades, imitating smooth plaster with dark joints between them, are ideal for the German style fakhtverk. The design will help to create a cute "toy" exterior of the house, which is located on the alpine slopes.

Translucent Panels

Translucent panels consist of two sheets of tempered glass, between which an aluminum frame is installed. Glass blocks transmit light, which allows them to be used as a successful symbiosis of windows and walls. The material is quite expensive. Manufacturers offer a wide range of translucent panels, which are used not only for finishing private houses, but also for facing skyscrapers and ordinary high-rises. In the latter two cases, the material makes it easier to integrate modern buildings into the architecture of the city and make them lighter and more “airy”. Translucent panels can be painted in various shades that allow you to combine exterior details with the color scheme of the landscape area. In the budget options for the decoration of the walls of arbors, greenhouses, winter gardens or greenhouses use multi-layered sheets of polycarbonate and glass (they also belong to this category).

Such material is unsuitable for facing the house. They produce cassette, sectional, building-bolt, modular and mixed translucent panels. Structures are classified into types, based on the features of fastening methods. Panels do not pass moisture, possess average heat conductivity. For the finishing of houses a layer of special insulation is used, which is built into the structure. Translucent panels are durable, withstand mechanical impact, have a relatively small weight.


Aluminum composite panels are a multi-layer construction in which a layer of minerals or plastic is enclosed between aluminum sheets. Several layers of color coating are applied on the front side of the material, and a protective film and varnish are fixed on top. Some models of panels have a light glossy shine. Aluminum composite "boards" with a high degree of rigidity weigh little. Material produced in the form of beams, the length of which may vary. Aluminum composite is used to finish the facades of private houses, state-owned buildings and in the reconstruction of old buildings. In the latter case, low weight reduces the load on dilapidated walls. The panels do not belong to thermal insulation materials, but they are also non-combustible. Aluminum composite is characterized by excellent sound absorption.

Installation Features

For different types of decorative panels use different technologies of installation. Although the algorithm of actions for all remains the same:

  • First of all, carry out measurements. If necessary, the panels are trimmed and adjusted to the parameters of the surface to be decorated.
  • Then the wall is prepared. Cleared of old finish. Even out if there are serious defects.
  • Next, set the frame. For example, a similar design is required when installing siding.
  • If the finishing material does not provide high thermal insulation, then the facade is insulated before mounting the panels. The material is placed inside the frame.
  • After that, proceed directly to fixing the panels.

Прикреплять материал к стене можно с помощью саморезов или дюбелей (для бетонных стен), на строительный клей, который наносится зубчатым шпателем. К примеру, для металлического сайдинга потребуются шурупы. Их шляпки надежно маскируются в скрытых швах. Самыми простыми в монтаже считаются легкие панели из пенополистирола (пенопласта), которые просто сажают на строительный клей. However, the material will not last long. Frame construction is made independently of metal (less wood) or purchased in a ready-made form.


With the improvement of the house competent finishing of the facade can extend the life of the building and make your stay as comfortable as possible. Facing material should combine a beautiful appearance that is in harmony with the design of the landscape, and high technical characteristics. Panels can imitate the surface of wood, stone, brick, plaster. For example, this is a great option for those who want to decorate the walls of the house with rare material with an unusual texture, but cannot afford such luxury. If you turn to products manufactured by bona fide manufacturers, the coating will last more than one year.

Watch the video: Living Room Makeover with Wood Accent Wall (April 2020).

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