Is Allura USA’s fiber cement siding defective? The complaint for this class action alleges that it cracks, breaks, splits, warps, pulls away from the home, and allows water to enter.
The Nationwide Class for this action is all persons in the US who own structures on which the defendants’ fiber cement siding is or was installed. The Minnesota Subclass is all persons and entities who own structures within Minnesota on which defendants’ fiber siding is or was installed, during the fullest period allowed by law.
The defedants in this case include Allura USA, LLC, Plycem USA, LLC, Plycem USA, Inc., Elementia USA, Inc., and Elementia SAB de CV. (The first four are subsidiaries of the last, which is a Mexican company.)
The complaint claims that the defendants market the siding as durable and lasting for fifty years. However, it contends that the siding begins to fail only a few short years after it is installed.
Why is the siding failing so quickly? The complaint alleges that the makers use excessive amounts of fly ash instead of grain and silica. It says that, while small amounts of fly ash may be all right, excessive amounts make the siding too brittle for exterior use. Siding is exposed to weather cycles of hot and cold, it says, and expands and contracts if there is excess moisture in it. If the material is too brittle, this will cause cracking and breaking. Because of this, the complaint says, a siding advertised to last fifty years begins to fall apart within five years.
However, the complaint says that the siding’s makers insist that the problem is not the siding itself but installation errors.
Plaintiff Jacob W. Juvland says he bought his Chisago City, Minnesota home in part because of superior-quality building materials. At the time, the home buyer’s inspection report said only that a few pieces of siding were cracked and that the siding in general was “satisfactory.” Two years later, however, in 2018, Juvland noticed widespread cracking in the siding boards on all sides of the home and saw that the siding had begun to warp and pull away from the walls.
Juvland contacted the builder, who provided the receipt for the siding, and Juvland filed a claim with Allura. However, Allura claimed that the problem was improper installation. Juvland did further research and learned that many other homeowners had had similar problems with the siding.
The complaint alleges unfair and deceptive trade practices, unlawful trade practices, negligence, breach of warranties, fraudulent misrepresentation, and fraudulent concealment.