Installing Masonite or Cedar Siding

If you are tired of the appearance of your home and want to do something about it, then consider siding. Once you decide to go with siding, you will have several decisions to make such as material. In more than 50% of the time, homeowners go with vinyl siding. This material is available in a wide range of colors, textures, and thickness. In addition, vinyl siding is lightweight but to make it work, it must be installed correctly, which generally means hiring a professional.

Wood and Masonite

Wood is another great material, as is Masonite. For the person with basic carpentry skills, both of these materials can be installed by the homeowner. For installation, tools are generally already owned so all that is needed is buying the material and getting the assistance of a friend or family member. Now, when you work with wood, make sure the material is primed before it is installed.


The specific tools needed for installing cedar or Masonite siding include a table saw, chop saw, jig saw, hammer, chalk line, carpenter's knife, compass, square, measuring tape, and a ladder. The house would need to be trimmed out and then to create a moisture barrier, plastic must be wrapped around the home. Also included in the trim out are the exterior corner, soffits, and base trim.

Drip Flashing

You are also to install drip flashing, which goes above the windows and doors, as well as the top of the base trim. Typically, this material is made from aluminum, being secured to the house sheathing using nails. After the plastic and trim are in place, you need to snap horizontal chalk lines every 3.5 to 4.5 inches around the exterior wall. For this, start with the base and then move to the roof.


Next, clapboards are installed, lining each up with the snapped chalk lines. First, a small spacer board would be installed at the bottom row where the clapboards will be placed. This board should measure one-inch ripped length. When ready to install the clapboards, you want to start at the bottom, again working your way up to the roof. Then, these boards are nailed with stainless steel ring nails, installing them every 16 inches along both top and bottom while going into the stud.

For the siding, you would need to make specific cuts for going around windows, doors, vents, and other obstructions. Just remember to take your time. Too often, becoming hurried ends up with crooked siding, mistakes, and problems. Again, having someone there to help you with the panels will certainly make things go along much smoother. Finally, as you go through the installation process, we recommend you measure and re-measure as you go, which will help keep you on track.