Mistakes are Bound to Happen

A bit of bad news since the last time I posted.  While the siding looked good when we installed it over Easter, we needed to tear it all down and start from scratch.  A storm came through and thoroughly saturated the exterior of the house.  We had planned on staining and sealing the siding after installation, but I had to leave and we were not able to accomplish that task.  My high school shop & construction drawing teacher recommended staining and sealing the siding before putting it up, but we tried rushing things and it bit us in the ass.

What ended up happening is the siding swelled because it was wood and became warped and disfigured to the point that it was coming off the house in some areas despite having screwed it all on.  For obvious reasons it cannot be left like that.

In order to fix it, we needed to remove each board and start again.  We stained and sealed it so that the wood does not absorb water like it did previously and become warped once again.

Some of the mistakes we made were not leaving room for expansion between the planks and not sealing them before the weather took a turn for the worse.  Even if we had left gaps between the pieces, I still believe we would have needed to take it all down and seal it because some pieces are warped so much that they would have popped out anyways.

Luckily, removing the boards was not too difficult of a task.  We simply needed to get a pry bar and get behind the board enough to leverage it off the wall.  The screws pulled out of the wall as we made our way up the board.  In order to remove the screws we had to hit them from the backside if they were in the board enough for them to come to the surface, then take vice grips and unscrew it from the rest of the board.  Those screws that stayed embedded in the house we used the vice grips and again, unscrewed them from the house.

Many of the board were cupping and warping in all different directions, but they are much better than they were when they first came off the house.

In reinstalling the boards we made sure to leave space in between them for expansion and contraction this time, which is something we failed to do the first time we installed the siding.  It is a bit darker because of the stain, but I think it looks much better than before, and hopefully it will fare better in inclement weather in the future.

Here’s an album showing some of the damage and the work that went in to fixing our mistake.

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