QUICK TIPS FOR INSTALLING VINYL SIDING
Easy, at-a-glance guide for common installation tasks. Download now to take the knowledge with you on the job.DOWNLOAD NOW
Vinyl siding contracts and expands as the outside temperature changes. To avoid structural or aesthetic problems associated with temperature fluctuation, take the following steps:
For more information, refer to page 16 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
Keep in mind, siding is only as straight and stable as what lies under it. Below are some issues to address before you start installation:
Choose aluminum, galvanized steel, or other corrosion-resistant nails, staples, or screws. Aluminum trim pieces require aluminum or stainless steel fasteners. Remember that as temperatures change, vinyl siding can expand and contract 1/2” (12.7mm) or more over a 12’6″ (3.81m) length.
No matter what fastener you choose, follow the basic fastening steps listed below:
For more information, refer to pages 15 and 16 of the Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
You can use a circular saw, tin snips, utility knife, or a scoring tool to cut vinyl siding. Depending on the tools you use, for a safe, clean, and straight cut:
Wear safety goggles for all cutting and nailing operations and follow safe construction practices.
With a circular saw, install the fine-toothed (plywood) blade backwards on the saw and cut slowly, especially in cold weather. SAFETY WARNING: DO NOT TRY TO CUT MATERIALS OTHER THAN VINYL SIDING WITH A REVERSED DIRECTION SAW BLADE.
When using tin snips to cut siding, avoid closing the blades completely at the end of a stroke.
With a utility knife or scoring tool, score the vinyl face up with medium pressure and snap it in half. It’s not necessary to cut all the way through the vinyl.
For more information, refer to page 17 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
As stated in the installation manual, always install flashing that meets the requirements of ICC AC148, such as aluminum coil stock, around windows, doors, other openings, inside and outside corners, and the intersection of walls and roofing. The most important tip to remember when applying window flashing is that flashing should extend past the nail flanges of the window (or any accessory) to prevent water infiltration. The flashing must be long enough to direct water over the nail flange of the last full course of siding.
With this in mind, you should first apply the flashing on the underside of the window, then to the sides of the window (make sure to overlap the bottom flashing), and finally, to the top of the window.
For more information, refer to page 21 of the Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
Since vinyl siding can expand and contract depending on the outdoor temperature, fitting siding under windows requires careful measuring and planning. To mark the vinyl panel to be cut, follow the steps below:
Hold the panel under the window and mark the width of the window opening on the panel. Add approximately ¼” (6.4mm) to both sides-these marks represent the vertical cuts.
Lock a small piece of scrap siding into the lower panel next to the window. Mark it ¼” (6.4mm) below the sill height. This will serve as a template for the horizontal cuts.
Transfer the horizontal measurement to the panel that will be installed under the window. Measurement may not be the same on both sides of the window.
After you have cut the panel with tin snips or a utility knife, you’re ready to install it under the window. The installation manual outlines the following installation procedure:
For more information, refer to page 25 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
For the most part, follow the same procedures for installing vertical vinyl siding as horizontal siding, with a few noted differences. Below, you’ll find a summary of important steps that apply only to vertical panel installation:
Working from the starter strip to the corners, lock each panel and fasten every 12″ (305mm). Vertical panels are terminated into the J-channel installed at top and the vertical base or J-channel installed at bottom.
For more information, refer to pages 28 – 32 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
Ventilation is an important aspect of soffit installation that should be considered before you begin work. Consult a local building official for the appropriate requirements for your area and use vented soffit or other vented products as necessary.
Inspect and plan your job in advance. Surfaces should be uniform and straight from any viewing angle. For residing applications, nail down any loose panels, boards, or shingles and fur when necessary.
For more information, refer to pages 33 – 36 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.
To remove a panel for any reason, follow the steps below:
Slip a zip lock or unlocking tool behind the bottom lock of the panel above the one to be replaced and unzip it from the lock on the damaged panel.
Gently bend out upper panel. Take the nails out of the damaged panel and remove it.
Lock on the new panel and nail it up.
Use the unlocking tool again to zip the upper panel over the lock on the new panel.
For more information, refer to page 38 of the VSI Vinyl Siding Installation Manual.