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Home Maintenance

Siding Repairs: What to look for and supplies for fixing

Siding Repairs: What to look for and supplies for fixing

How often do you stand back and take a close look at your siding?

If you are regularly cleaning and maintaining your siding, good for you! Siding protects houses from the elements and, when kept in good condition, adds curb appeal and value. Luckily, it’s easy and affordable to repair small holes, cracks and dents in siding yourself.

Now is a good time to get out and make note of your siding’s condition so you’re ready for DIY siding repairs in the spring or summer.

Moisture under the siding increases the risk of rotting wood, infestations of destructive insects, and the cost of replacing siding that is damaged beyond repair.

LeDrew Lumber encourages you to inspect your siding at least once a year; before the repairs get too big or complicated to do yourself.

Be aware of moisture damage

If you find any holes, or warped and separated siding, check for signs of moisture behind the siding, and check the condition of the wood structure. Make sure there is no mould, mildew or rotting wood.

Don’t forget to check around the trim on windows and doors, as well as the fascia and soffits underneath the roof.

The dangers of separating panels

Caulking that becomes brittle or moves away from the panels can expose your home’s walls to insects. It’s best to reapply caulking to a clean and dry surface, but first ensure that the wall underneath is dry.

Swelling boards

Extreme temperature fluctuations and dripping water on your siding can also lead to swollen siding boards. In most cases there will also be water underneath the siding, which can damage your home’s framing. Repair any water damage under the siding before replacing the warped or swollen siding.

Do you have uninvited guests?

If you discover an infestation of carpenter ants, termites or other pests, this could be a sign that your siding or the wooden structure is decaying. Carpenter ants, unlike termites, do not eat wood, but rather chew it to make tunnels to burrow in, leaving a tell-tale trail of sawdust. Carpenter ants are attracted to moisture, so you will need to solve any leaking water issues to keep the ants from returning.

First, get estimates from pest control companies and determine how they will eradicate the infestation.

If you have furry guests such as raccoons, squirrels, mice, bats or birds behind your siding or in your soffits or roof, contact a humane animal removal service to make sure they leave safely and can’t get back in.

You can start to repair the damaged wood structure and walls behind the siding once the infestation is taken care of. Now you are ready to replace the wood framing and panels or insulation before installing new siding or making repairs.

Vinyl Repairs

Repair a small hole or dent in vinyl siding – Fill small holes or dents and then paint it the same colour.

Materials and tools

  • Sandpaper (100 grit)
  • Putty knife
  • Putty or filler for exterior surfaces
  • Rags
  • Paint, exterior in same colour and finish as siding

Instructions

  1. First sand the edges of the hole for a smooth finish
  2. Push the putty or filler into the hole with the putty knife, even out the surface and remove extra putty
  3. For deeper holes, apply putty in thin layers, and allow each layer to dry
  4. Make sure the filler is dry
  5. Sand the putty with 220 grit paper when it is dry
  6. Use a damp cloth to clean the repair surface
  7. Let dry
  8. Paint

Replace a section of vinyl siding

It’s best to replace a more extensively damaged panel.

Materials and tools

  • New siding panel
  • Siding removal tool
  • Power drill
  • Exterior screws
  • Paint, exterior in same colour and finish as siding

Instructions

  • Pry out nails and unscrew screws
  • Carefully remove the damaged siding panel
  • Check the surface covered by the siding to make sure there is no mould or rot
  • Insert the new piece into the groove on the piece above it by tilting up slightly. Use your siding tool to help snap it into place.
  • Make sure the new panel is even with the edge of the panels directly below and above it before screwing it in
  • Install the new piece of siding with a drill and screws
  • Paint the siding to cover up any scuff marks or scratches

Vinyl siding corner repair – To repair dented corners on vinyl siding, you can purchase a handy corner repair kit which will cut down the time it would normally take. 

Aluminum Repairs

Aluminum siding is easy to repair with a patch. If the panel is more extensively damaged, you will need to replace it. To replace damaged corner caps, remove with a pair of pliers, and extract all nails.

Materials and Tools

  • Replacement caps
  • Aluminum nails
  • Pry bar
  • Utility knife
  • Silicone glue
  • Paint

Instructions

  1. Put a new cap inside the bottom edge of the panel
  2. Nail the cap in place
  3. Repeat for all damaged corner caps as needed
  4. Silicone in place the last cap you are replacing after removing the last nail strip
  5. Clapboard Repair (Cedar, pine, oak, or spruce)
  6. Materials
  7. Hammer
  8. Flat pry bar
  9. Crosscut hand saw with fine teeth
  10. Utility knife
  11. Wood filler
  12. Silicone, caulking gun
  13. Instructions
  14. Remove all nails
  15. Secure the old siding with nails hammered on an angle
  16. Pry off any damaged pieces of siding
  17. Cut a new piece of clapboard with a crosscut hand saw
  18. Add paintable silicone to both ends of the new piece of clapboard
  19. Put the new board into the empty space
  20. Fasten with ring-shank nails
  21. Paint in the same colour as the old siding

Shingles Repair

  1. First locate the nails, then split the shingle to make it easier to remove
  2. Gently remove the damaged shingle using a pry bar and hammer
  3. Insert a flat tool up into the space to remove or cut the nails
  4. Remove any stray wood pieces or nails from the space underneath the shingles above
  5. Slide the new shingle into the space ¼” below the other shingles
  6. Tap it gently up then drive into top corners on an angle
  7. Stain or paint as needed to match the other shingles

Fiber Cement Repairs

  1. Repair damaged fiber board siding by filling dents and cracks with patching compound
  2. Use new fiber boards to replace damaged fiber cement boards or wooden clapboards
  3. Remove the damaged siding, carefully prying out nails for the board immediately above
  4. Cut a new piece of fiber siding to fit the space
  5. Secure the new fiber board in place by blind-nailing the bottom piece first
  6. Hammer in the top piece of the fiber cement siding by driving nails through the old siding
  7. Colour match and paint the new siding

Stucco Repair

Use caulking for minor stucco repairs or use a patch and then apply stucco, and paint.

Larger holes in stucco will need a more involved process to repair, with three different coats of stucco, and more time for drying.

If you need more information or have questions, visit LeDrew Lumber. Our team is always ready to help you with what you need. We're here to assist you in any way we can.

Disclaimer: The information and resources in these articles and on this website are available for informational and educational purposes only. The articles provided on this website are created with every reasonable effort to ensure completeness and accuracy. In doing so, the article writers, publishers, and the business that this website represents assume no responsibility for errors, omissions, or opposed interpretation of the articles and under no circumstance will these parties be held liable for any direct, indirect and/or consequential damages of any kind incurred from undertaking tasks outlined in the articles or on this website. In addition, it is suggested that readers check by-laws, zoning laws and building codes of your local area and country.


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