Vinyl Siding Replacement Vinyl Siding Replacement

Vinyl siding replacement is not a frequent requirement simply because vinyl siding lasts a very long time. Only when it begins to split, crack or fade to a point where it is no longer attractive does it have to be replaced. In the former case, if individual panels show signs of age, you may be able to replace only those panels that are damaged. If, however, you feel it is time to replace all of the siding, the job will require a considerable amount of time. 

Tools You Will Need

When it’s time to replace the vinyl siding on your home, you need a few tools, only one of which is specially designed for vinyl siding. To remove the siding you will need a zip tool to separate the top panel from the one you are removing. To cut the new siding to size, you can either use a backsaw or specialty tin snips. A utility knife works to remove small pieces. To remove old nails you can use a pry bar, wonder bar or hammer claw. Finally, for hanging the new siding, the job requires a hammer, the right size nails, a carpenter’s square and a chalk line. 

Removing Panels

Whether you are replacing a damaged patch of vinyl siding or pulling it all off and replacing it in its entirety, there is a special way to separate each panel from the one below it. Using the zip tool which is a flat, metallic pry tool with a partially looped end, you will unlock the panel from the one above it. Slip the looped end underneath the bottom lip of the top panel. Once inserted, slide it across the entire panel you are removing. This will disengage that panel from the one above it. As you lift the upper panel out of the way, you will see the nails that fasten the lower panel. They can now be removed. 

Partial Replacement

If you are only replacing a part of a panel that has cracked or been somehow damaged, rather than remove the entire panel you can cut the damaged section out and perform a partial replacement. If it is near the edge of the panel, measure from the edge to the other side of the damage. Otherwise, measure and mark on either end of the damage. Use a square to make straight lines and the chalk line to mark it. A pencil will work as well. Holding the square to the line, run the utility knife down it to make the cut. Once the damaged section has been isolated, remove the piece in the manner explained above. 

Hang the New Piece

When the damaged panel has been removed, cut a new piece 2 to 3 inches wider than the damaged piece you cut out. Once you have centered it over the exposed area, lock the replacement piece to the panel below it. There are slots provided on the top of the piece to set nails. Use galvanized nails of the correct size. It is important not to set the nails too tightly so the vinyl has room to move around a bit and expand and contract. 

Full replacement of vinyl siding involves the same process, although you remove all of the panels. They can be installed in full lengths where applicable. That may be a job for a contractor, though, especially if the work requires scaffolding or an extensive area. Small replacement jobs are easily accomplished with the right tools, without having to call in a professional. 

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