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How to Install Vinyl Siding

For several decades, vinyl siding has been on the rise and has been the premier choice for many homeowners. While our experts can get the job done quickly, some prefer to install their siding on their own. Here, we share how to install vinyl siding if you want to do it yourself:

Preparing the Area

Before you install vinyl siding, inspect the exterior of your home to make sure it’s ready for your project.

  1. Replace any rotten boards you find and secure any loose boards or wood trim.
  2. Scrape away any old caulking around your windows and doors so that your new siding will sit flush against the walls.
  3. Remove any moldings, downspouts, or lighting fixtures that may get in the way of your new vinyl siding installation.

Corner Posts

Before you can install vinyl siding on the sides of your home, you’ll need to make sure the inner and outer corners are taken care of.

  1. Use your tape measure to measure your corner post and add ½-inch to allot for a gap between the top of the post and the eave of the house.
  2. Then, make a straight cut on your corner post by cutting through the flanges with your snips.
  3. Place the post against your house and starting at the top, use your hammer and nails to secure it. Place a nail at the top of the upper slot on each side, then check to make sure it fits well and is straight.
  4. After making sure it’s straight, drive a nail into the middle of each slot every eight to 12 inches.

Window & Door Trim

After you’ve installed your corner post, you’ll want to install vinyl siding trim around your windows and doors.

  1. Use your measuring tape to measure the width of your window/door, then measure the width of your J-channel (usually it’ll be about an inch).
  2. Next, cut two pieces of channel that measure the width of your window/door plus the width of your channel (for example: if you window is 35″ wide and your channel is an inch wide, cut the piece to 36″).
  3. Repeat this step for your vertical pieces as well.
  4. After that, use your snips to cut a tab in each piece along the extra inch of channel. This lets you bend the piece around the window/door and fit it into the next piece.
  5. Choose one side of the window/door to start and insert your J-channel piece so that it sits flush.
  6. Once it’s fitted well, nail it in every third slot.
  7. Next, you can fit your next piece into the secured piece and repeat until all four pieces (or three if you’re doing a door) are secure.


After you complete all of your prep work, it’s time to start installing your vinyl siding.

  1. Use your chalk reel to make a chalk line where the lowest part of your wall is.
  2. Place your vinyl siding starter strip along the line and check to make sure it’s level.
  3. When it is, nail down in your starter strip every ten inches.
  4. Then, measure your first piece of siding to your desired length and place over your starter strip. (Vinyl siding expands and contracts when temperatures fluctuate, so make sure to leave ¼” between the end of the siding and the end of your wall.)
  5. Once your first piece of siding is in place, nail it down every eight to 12 inches, leaving about 1/8″ between each nail and the wall.
  6. After that, overlay your next piece of siding so that the top piece is closest to your home’s front door. (This will make the siding look more seamless when looking at it from the front.)
  7. Continue layering and nailing down your siding until your entire wall is sided.

*Photo courtesy of

Tools & Materials

  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Snips
  • Hammer
  • Chalk Reel
  • Nails
  • Siding

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