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Vinyl siding instructions and rules for proper siding installation

List of vinyl siding instructions

Here is a small list of vinyl siding instructions. There are ten rules to follow for basic vinyl siding installation. These rules are made by the actual manufacturers of vinyl siding and can be found wherever you buy vinyl siding.

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1. Installed panels must move freely from side to side.

2. When installing a siding panel, push up from the bottom until the lock is fully engaged with the piece below it. Without stretching the panel, reach up and nail it into place.

3. Fasten nails or other fasteners in the center of the nailing slot.

4. Do not force the panels up or down when fastening into position.

5. Do not drive the head of the nail tightly against the siding nail hem. Allow 1/32” (about the thickness of a dime) clearance between the fastener head and the siding panel. Drive nails straight and level to prevent distortion and buckling of the panel.

6. Leave a minimum of ¼” clearance at all openings and stops to allow for normal expansion and contraction. When installing in temperatures below 40 degrees, increase minimum clearance to 3/8”.

7. Do not caulk the panels where they meet the receiver of inside corners, outside corners, or J-trim. Do not caulk the overlap joints.

8. Do not face-nail or staple through siding. Vinyl siding expands and contracts with outside temperature changes. Face-nailing can result in ripples.

9. In residing, furring or removal of uneven original siding may be necessary.

10. In new construction, avoid the use of green lumber as the underlayment. Keep in mind that siding can only be as straight and stable as what lies under it.


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Some of these might seem a little redundant, but they are worth mentioning a few times.

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