How to Remove Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding comes in a variety of different colors, and textures. Sometimes accidents happen such grilling too close to the siding and melting it, or hitting it with your car. If you need to replace a panel or two, you will need to expose the nails holding them in place. This means loosening the good panel directly above the one you want to replace. By loosening this panel first, you’ll find the nails hidden underneath.

The top of each piece of vinyl siding is held in place with nails. The bottom sections of the row above lock in place, covering the nails. The best way to remove vinyl siding is with a special vinyl siding removal tool. They are found at most home improvement stores, or online. It makes the job easier than using a screwdriver.

Put on Gloves

Before you can remove the damaged piece of siding, put on a pair of gloves. The edges of siding are sharp and can easily cut your hands.

Examine the length of siding that is directly above the damaged section. You need to unlock the siding that is directly above the one you need to replace.

Unlocking the Panels

Find the seam line where the two sections are joined together. Using your vinyl siding removal tool, insert it at the seam line at either end of the panel. Once the vinyl removing tool is between the seams, pull down on the tool and this will unhook the two sections of siding. Continue to run the tool along the bottom of the seam until the top panel is free.

Removing the Nails

Lift up the top panel of the vinyl siding, exposing the nail heads that hold the damaged panel in place. It might be a good idea for someone to assist you. While one person holds the siding up, you can insert a pry bar under the siding. Put it directly under the siding and the nail heads. Pry the nails out. If you don’t have a pry bar, you can use the claw of your hammer instead. Toss the nails into a container. This eliminates the chances of getting a flat tire, or someone stepping on them. If the nails are still in good condition and unbent, you can use them again.

Once all the nails are removed, take out the damaged section. At the top section where the nails were, grasp the piece of siding and yank it in a downward motion. This will unhook the bottom from the next section of siding.

Continue to remove all the siding pieces that are damaged.

Cutting the New Panel

When you measure and cut your new piece of siding, don’t cut it so it will fit tight. Heat expands the siding and if you cut it so it fits tight, it can bow and fall off. You’ll want it to be slightly shorter, like a quarter to three-eighths inches shorter than the actual space. The right length allows the panel to move slightly from side to side.

Installing the New Panel

Put the new section in place by fitting one end first. To fit the other side in place, pull the siding out slightly; it will form a little hill and make the piece shorter, so you can insert the other side in place.

Lock the two panels together. Double check this to make sure they are locked together by pulling down slightly on the unnailed panel. If it does not fall down, then you’ll know it is securely locked.

Hammer the panel in place. Position the nail in the center of the nail slot. The nails cannot be too loose, or too tight. Hammer the nails in until the heads just touch the siding. The panel should still move from side to side.

When you need to hook the last two pieces together, do not start in the middle. Start at one end and work your way across. Insert your fingers under the bottom flap on the top piece. Pull down and then with your other hand, push it in to lock in place.

Although the task can seem daunting, it can be accomplished. Just take your time and don’t try to force things. After you finish the job, you won’t even know they were replaced.

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