Expert advice on how to repair and replace wood siding, including how to fix holes, repairing warped wood, and replacing wood siding shingles and boards.
Wood siding comes in many forms, including several types of boards, shingles, and sheets. If you have woodworking skills, you can tackle small repairs by duplicating the way the siding is installed. Special tools such as shingle-nail pullers may be needed for certain jobs.
Replacing a board or two can be a manageable project.
Large repairs generally require more equipment and more hands, and the work becomes more difficult the higher up the wall you go. If the work extends beyond replacing a board or a shingle or two, or you’re not used to handling a power circular saw or similar carpentry tools, you may want to hire a handyperson, carpenter, or local siding contractor to accomplish the job.
As you repair damage, identify what caused the damage, and correct the problem promptly. For example, if your wood siding was damaged by leaky gutters or poor drainage from the downspouts, correct those problems before more damage develops. Keep an eye out for dry rot and termite damage. Both are found on exterior as well as interior wood and can cause serious structural damage to your house. Dry rot is crumbling wood caused by a fungus. Termites bore tunnels through wood; you’ll sometimes see their wings or the castings they push out. Call pest control professionals if you find termite damage.
If paint problems are confined to a small area, you can touch them up. If they are more extensive, you may need to repaint the entire wall or house. Before painting, solve the cause of the problems that caused them. For more information, please see Exterior Painting.
Wood Board Siding Repairs
Siding is most vulnerable to water infiltration at vertical joints, such as where doors and windows intersect, or where siding boards butt against one another. A good way to keep water from seeping between boards is to apply caulking compound. It’s available in colors to match natural or painted finishes.
Choose a quality caulk that will maintain its elasticity over a range of temperatures. Cut the tube’s tip at a slight angle, and push it into the joint as you apply the caulk.