Install, maintain vinyl sliding in your home fast, safely like a Pro
Ready to embark on a new challenge in updating your home? Tackled the inside, laid new flooring or replaced that crummy front walkway and ready for a more ambitious project? This is the ultimate guide on how to install vinyl siding. Vinyl is a less expensive and durable alternative to other types of siding, and, as a bonus, it is the easiest to install.
Step 1: Remove Old Siding
If you are looking to replace all the siding or just a damaged section, we recommend you beginning at the end of a piece or a loose spot, although, it is possible to begin at any location. Occasionally, you can carefully pull out nails as siding is not firmly installed, but in the majority if instance, you will need a zip tool. Slide the flat bar behind a nail head to gently remove the nail. Eventually, siding becomes brittle and can break if removed improperly, therefore, we recommend removing nails so that the siding is no longer attached to the home.
Step 2: Waterproofing
Occasionally, water leaks behind siding. Inspect the building paper behind the siding for any holes or cracks as this type of damage can be repaired easily with housewrap tape and prevents mold and rot. If you are replacing siding near windows or doors, you may need to replace the flashing. This is best done during installing as flashing underneath the window will direct any potential water away from the window and to the outside where it can drip harmlessly away. Ensure that all pieces are installed from the bottom up, with the top of each piece overlapping the bottom safeguarding. This safeguards against water intrusion. This watertight barrier is the key challenge, and it may be beneficial to consult with local siding companies before embarking on this project.
Step 3: Install the J-Channel
Because of the large volume of water gushing around a window, a J-channel must be installed to divert the water safely. Again, start at the bottom and work up to ensure that each piece is overlapped by the piece above it. Cut J-channels two inches longer than the window. On each end, cut a notch one inch deep before installing underneath the window with nails every eight to ten inches. Leave space so that the siding can move back and forth slightly to allow for any expansion. Cut a 45 degree angle on the side J-channels before installation for a clean appearance. For the top J-channel, you will also cut the piece two inches longer than the window. At either end, cut a 1-inch notch and bend the metal to fit into the side J-channels which will force any water to run into the J-channel rather than behind it. Nail into place.
Step 4: Install Siding
We have a trick to install long pieces of siding, place one end into the trim and then push the siding firmly until it bows leaving room to install the piece at the opposite end. Then simply slid the piece up and maneuver the butt into the locking edge of the piece below. When cutting siding around a window or door, leave a 1/4 inch gap for expansion. You will need to measure from the locking tab to the siding below in order to notch siding for the bottom of the window. Cut the nailing hem with shears and then score deeply with a utility knife. Now, you can bend the siding to snap out the notch. And then you can install the siding underneath the window. Double check that the siding is overlapped by the window undersill trims so that water cannot run off underneath the siding. You may also need to notch the siding above the window. Using the zip tool, pull the last piece of siding over the lock and push into place. At this step, it is important to use your hand to pound the siding into place to prevent any damage.
This is a moderately difficult home project and will likely take all day to complete. As a result, many homeowners to choose to outsource this job. Regardless, it is a project any handy homeowner can take on. Whether you choose the DIY approach or hire someone, at the end of the day, you can sit back and enjoy the new look of your home.