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How to Replace Siding on a House

No matter what kind of home siding material you have installed, there’s always the possibility of damage.  Even the strongest material may eventually crack, warp, or break down.  If part of your home’s siding has been damaged, it should be replaced as soon as possible.  Siding is the protective skin of any home; if damaged, water, insects, or other pests can access your home’s internal framing and insulation.  Don’t risk taking structural damage to your home; replace damaged siding promptly!

If only a small part of your home siding has been damaged, you may not need to do a full-home replacement.  Because siding is laid in sections, you can replace just the damaged section; you may even be able to do these repairs yourself.  Depending on the siding material you have installed, there will be different steps to the repair.

How to Replace Vinyl Siding on a House

Vinyl siding is one of the most commonly used siding materials in the housing market today, and while its cheap, waterproof plastic makes it an easy choice for many, it is prone to cracking over time or developing holes from branches or baseballs.  Luckily, it is one of the easier types of siding to replace on your house.

In order to do this repair, you will need a matching piece of vinyl siding to replace the damaged one.  If you do not have any extra siding boards, consider taking the damaged board to your local hardware store or siding retailer and ask for a match.  If they’re unable to find a proper match, you can have a paint store mix a can of outdoor paint that will match your original siding color.  Be sure to get a replacement piece with at least an inch of extra space on either end; vinyl siding is intended to interlock with adjacent boards.

Once you have the replacement boards, you’ll need a few tools.  You’ll need a zip siding tool, galvanized steel nails (1″), and a claw hammer.

To replace the siding, follow these steps:

  1. Begin by detaching the damaged board from the rest of the siding; starting on one end, push the zip tool up underneath the bottom until you feel it hook the bottom lip of the board.  Then pull the tool down and out (towards yourself) to unhook the siding.  Pull the zip tool along the bottom edge until it is fully unzipped from the lower board.  Do the same with the bottom of the board above.
  2. Once the damaged board is fully unzipped, the nails should be exposed.  You’ll need to hold the undamaged boards out of the way with one arm and use the back of your hammer (the claw) to pull out the nails.
  3. With the damaged board removed, you can now install the replacement.  Start by sliding one end behind the edge of a neighboring board.  Snap the bottom lip to the nailing strip of the board below it.  Be sure the board overlaps with the edges of the neighboring boards on each side.
  4. Once the new board is in place, you can nail it down.  Be sure NOT to hammer the nails all the way in, you want there to be some space between the nail head and the wall.  Vinyl expands and contracts in different temperatures; if nailed flush to the wall, the siding will crack when the temperature changes.
  5. After the board is nailed into place, use your zip tool to pull down on the bottom lip of the panel above it, then press down on the upper board with your hand to snap it into place.  Repeat along the entire bottom length to ensure it is fully snapped in.

How to Install Wood House Siding Replacement

Another commonly used siding material is wood; however, wood is highly susceptible to rot and insect damage over time.  If one of your wood panels has gone bad, replacing it is relatively simple.  Wood siding doesn’t overlap the way vinyl does, so measuring the right size piece is crucial.  Be sure to measure multiple times to get a tight fit.

To replace siding, you’ll need a replacement piece (measured to fit), a hammer, a flat bar, 8D galvanized nails, and a utility knife.

Here’s how to replace bad wooden siding:

  1.  Use your utility knife to cut any caulk or paint holding the piece in place.  Use the claw of your hammer to pull out any nails.  Using your flat bar, slip the bar up underneath and pull the damaged piece of siding away from the wall.  You can then pull down to remove the board.
  2. Carefully slide in the new panel, letting the bottom of the panel above overlap with the top of the new panel.
  3. Use your 8D nails to hammer it into place, or use a nail gun if you have one.  You’ll want to drive the nail through the bottom of the overlapping panel.

How To Replace Fiber Cement Siding

Fiber cement siding is generally one of the most durable types of siding; on occasion, it can sustain water damage.  If you need to replace new house siding for your fiber cement home, you’ll need to know how to install fresh pieces.

To properly replace the fiber cement siding on a house, you’ll need a replacement panel, a pry bar, a hammer, 8D galvanized nails, and a utility knife.

Here is the process for installing a new fiber cement siding replacement:

  1. Use your utility knife to cut any caulk and nails that are in your way, and use your pry bar to pull the upper board away from the damaged one.  Then pull the damaged board down and off.
  2. Slip the new panel up underneath the bottom lip of the panel above it, then blind nail it down.
  3. Caulk the edges.

Need Help?

If you find that your siding replacement project is too difficult for you, feel free to reach out to us at TrueBlue Roofing and Siding for help.  We respect a good DIY, but sometimes you’ll need the services of a professional.  If you need help with your home exteriors, fill out our contact form.

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