Things To Know About DIY Installation Of Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is an excellent choice for your home because it requires very little maintenance. You won't have to deal with peeling paint or damage from insects. To keep the siding in good shape, all you need to do is wash it occasionally to remove dirt and grime. You may think that because the siding is lightweight that you can install it yourself. If you have a lot of experience with DIY projects, it may be possible, but in most cases, it's best to let a professional install vinyl siding. Improper installation can lead to many problems later on. Here are a few things you should know before you attempt to install vinyl siding yourself.

Vinyl Siding Needs To Move

One of the most important things to know about vinyl siding is that it expands and contracts along with outdoor temperature changes. During a hot summer day, the panels expand, and during a cold winter night, the panels contract. When you mount the panels on your house, you have to be careful to allow for this movement to take place. That means you don't want to pound the nails down flat to hold the panels stationary. Also, the panels shouldn't touch a door or window frame, or they may buckle when the panels expand in hot weather.

The Siding Must Be Cut To Size

When you order vinyl siding, you determine how much you need by measuring the width and height of your home as if it has solid walls. You don't account for windows and doors initially. During the installation process, you'll cut the vinyl to fit around windows, doors, and other openings on your house. Vinyl can be cut with a circular saw or utility knife. However, the work must be precise, so the panels are level and can expand properly.

A Contractor May Have More Siding Choices

Another important thing to consider before you install vinyl siding is the type of siding to buy. You'll never need to paint the siding, but you may want to if you want to change your house color some day. If you think you're likely to paint the siding in the future, look for a brand that's suitable for painting. Some manufacturers will void your warranty if you paint their vinyl siding.

If you do paint the vinyl, be careful about going darker with the color. Dark colors absorb more heat, and that means the panels will expand more than usual in the summer. That could lead to problems with buckling. Certain brands of vinyl siding are made with darker colors to start with, and they can withstand heat better than other brands that are available in only light shades. You'll probably have a much wider choice in brands, colors, and qualities of vinyl siding if you buy from a contractor rather than buy off the shelf at a home improvement store.