The most common types of siding material are attached horizontally, starting at the bottom of the house. Each type of siding has nuances as to how it's attached to the exterior of your house. There are also tools and blades designed specially to cut and install some siding materials. Make sure you use the proper tool for the type of exterior material you choose to cover the outside of your home. Shown on the following pages are the most common ways to install vinyl siding and cedar siding, along with a few tips on working with fiber cement siding.


A. Measure and mark the piece of vinyl siding to fit. Use snips to cut through the flanges. B. Continue to cut through the material, cutting the rest of the J-flange.


A. Measure and cut a corner post, so that there will be a 1/2-in. (13-mm) gap between the top of the post and the eave of the house. B. Measure the length of siding needed. Mark and cut the piece to length. C. Nail the corner post at the top of the post. Check for plumb. Fasten the posts every 12 in (305 mm).

D. Determine the lowest part of the wall that will be sided. Make a chalk line across the house for the first horizontal piece. E. Lay out the top of the strip along the chalk line. Check for level. F. Nail the starter strip to the house every 10 in. (255 mm). G. Miter the ends of a i-channel trim piece to fit two channel widths wider than opening of window. Attach the trim piece under window. (Full-size of above image).

H. Cut the side trim pieces to length, and install them on either side of the window. I. Nail the trim piece in place on top of the window. J. Cut the first piece of siding to length. Install over the starter strip from step F.

K. Nail each siding piece so that it isn't driven all of the way into the house. There should be a gap of about 1/4 in (3 mm). L. Overlay each successive piece of siding to cover the house.


A. When planning to overlap siding, you may want to overlap the material so that the top piece is closest to the house’s front door. B. By overlapping away from the house, the siding appears seamless when looking at the exterior from the front door.



A. Cedar siding offers a few options for treating corners. Mitering is a popular option to create a neat finish. The technique here uses corner boards. They are sized according to the siding’s thickness, but are often 3/4-in. (19-mm) or 1-1/4-in. (32-mm) material. Check that each piece is flush with the house before nailing it in place. B. Continue cutting the corner bead pieces to fit along the corner joint. C. Nail the corner bead in place. Fill any joints with caulk to seal.

D. Cut and attach a furring strip to support the lower edge of the first board. E. Face nail to studs penetrating 1-1/4 in (32 mm) into solid wood. Use one ring shank nail per bearing spaced at maximum 24 in. (610 mm) on center. F. Cut and install each row to length. Use a foam brush to apply sealant. G. Make sure that each course overlaps the previous by about 1 in. (25 mm) to allow for shrinkage. Do not overlap more than 2 in. (50 mm).


A. Drive galvanized siding nails or screws through the top of each length of siding into the studs. You may want to make pilot holes. B. Each row overlaps the row below, (as with cedar siding, above). Create an overlap of at least a 1-1/2 in (38 mm) to cover up the fasteners.


Fiber cement siding can be tougher to cut than wood or vinyl siding. Manufacturers have created special tools and blades to help you cut through the material, making it almost as easy as cutting through wood. You can use a special scoring tool, or a carbide- tipped blade in a circular saw (shown above: FIBER CEMENT BLADE).

Thursday, June 6, 2013 13:39 PST