NAHB Research Center
If you've ever admired an old, unpainted barn that has survived 100 years or more of weather, it's easy to wonder why you should use a finish on your home. However, the cracks, fissures, and air spaces that give weathered barn siding its character wouldn't be acceptable on most houses. While you can't completely arrest or reverse the weathering of exterior wood, you can slow the process dramatically by using the right type of finish. Appearance, durability, cost, surface type, ease of application, and maintenance should all be considered when selecting an exterior finish.