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Installing Fiber Cement Siding

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  • #758198
    cls1989
    Pro

    The installation instructions say there should be a minimum of 1-1/4” of penetration into the studs. I’m going over the old siding. The old siding and sheathing around probably about 1-3/8” thick. The new fiber cement siding is 5/16” thick. That’s about 1-11/16” of thickness that the nail has to travel through before it reaches the stud. I have a couple of questions about this.

    1. The instructions say 1-1/4” of penetration into the stud. Since I’m going over the old siding and sheathing would that old siding and sheathing be considered part of the structure / framing? In other words, would the nail penetration into the old siding and sheathing be just as good as penetration into the studs? Or do I have to get at least 1-1/4 nail penetration into the studs?

    2. If I have to get at least 1-1/4” nail penetration into the stud than I basically need a 3 inch long nail. I don’t see any 3 inch long roofing nails (pneumatic). The longest pneumatic roofing nails I can find are 1-3/4” if I have to get the 1-1/4” stud penetration what are some other 3 inch long nails I can use? I would assume the head of the nail needs to sit proud of the surface. If it countersinks it won’t do a good job of holding the 5/16” thick fiber cement siding.

    siding-1

    Attachments:
    #758204
    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Moderator
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    Hitachi makes a coil siding nail gun that is the preferred method for installing the James Hardy siding. I know you can get 2 1/2″ and possibly 3″ in their coils. Hardy went away from a roofing mail installation many years ago.

    Is your sheathing that you are going over wood boards, plywood< OSB or a fiber product?

    #758231
    ChadM
    Moderator
    Rogers, Ohio

    Like Kurt said, you should be able to get siding nails in the length you need…

    By the pic you posted, it looks like you will be going over T-111 siding…You say that is over top of sheathing?

    Chad

    A Working Pro since 1993

    Member since 12/07/2013

    #758279
    cls1989
    Pro

    I appreciate the recommendations.

    I see hitachi sells 2-1/2” siding nails on Amazon. I’ll get a box and rent a siding nail gun.

    The sheathing appears to be boards. See photo.

    Yes. The current wood siding is over the sheathing.

    I want to do board and batten for the design. I purchased trim boards to cover the seams between the fiber cement panels. What type of nail should I use for the trim / batten boards? Siding nail? Something else?

    Finally, I can use the 2-1/2” siding nails for the areas that get nailed to the studs. I believe I have to use a shorter nail for the areas that don’t get nailed to stud. Such as the outside perimeter, to avoid hitting a wire or something like that. Am I being too cautious or is this the correct approach?

    #758294
    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Moderator
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    With board sheeting and T – 111, you should get plenty of grip with the 2 1/2″ nail. Even with the 2 1/2″ nail with the T – 111 and board sheeting you will only penetrate into the stud about 1″. Your wires should be further away from the face of the sheeting than that. If your studs are laid out at 16″ O?C, you should be able to lay everything out on studs or framing of some sort.

    They also make a 2″ hardy nail that would penetrate less.

    You can nail your battens with the same nails as the panels.

    #758902
    cls1989
    Pro

    Thank you for all the advice on the nails.

    I do have one other problem I need to solve. How do I ensure the bottom edge on these 4×10 vertical siding sheets is straight / even across the length of the garage? From what I gather I can use some type of starter strip. What appears to be an L-bracket that I level and fasten to the bottom edge of the wall. The new siding just sits on the edge of the starter strip. I cant seem to find any starter strips for 4×10 fiber cement siding. Any recommendations? It would need to be strong enough to hold 100lb sheets of siding.

    see photo for example

    Attachments:
    #758905
    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Moderator
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    Thank you for all the advice on the nails.

    I do have one other problem I need to solve. How do I ensure the bottom edge on these 4×10 vertical siding sheets is straight / even across the length of the garage? From what I gather I can use some type of starter strip. What appears to be an L-bracket that I level and fasten to the bottom edge of the wall. The new siding just sits on the edge of the starter strip. I cant seem to find any starter strips for 4×10 fiber cement siding. Any recommendations? It would need to be strong enough to hold 100lb sheets of siding.

    see photo for example

    A starter track is used more for lap siding, not panels.
    To keep the bottom of the panels straight. I would tapcon a 2 x to the foundation, set the panels on that to install them and then remove the 2x when done. Having the panels sit on a ledge would allow a place to trap moisture and be absorbed into the panel. On lap siding the starter spaces the bottom of the first piece away from the wall to keep all the pieces at the same slant. with Panels, you do not want to kick the bottom out.

    #759175
    cls1989
    Pro

    I’ve started the project. It’s going pretty well. But I had a hard time getting the lower edge even across panels. I was able to flush trim the lower edge of the fiber cement siding to the bottom edge of the old siding using a flush trim bit on my router, but it left a bit of a jagged edge.

    It doesn’t look too bad, but I was thinking I’d like to cover it without some type of trim. Specifically thinking L shaped aluminum trim. Looking for something that’s thin and isn’t too noticeable. Partly why I don’t want to use 3/4” thick boards. Is there any product you guys could recommend for this application?

    #759182
    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Moderator
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    I’ve started the project. It’s going pretty well. But I had a hard time getting the lower edge even across panels. I was able to flush trim the lower edge of the fiber cement siding to the bottom edge of the old siding using a flush trim bit on my router, but it left a bit of a jagged edge.

    It doesn’t look too bad, but I was thinking I’d like to cover it without some type of trim. Specifically thinking L shaped aluminum trim. Looking for something that’s thin and isn’t too noticeable. Partly why I don’t want to use 3/4” thick boards. Is there any product you guys could recommend for this application?

    Anything you put there would trap water or create a ledge for water to sit on and wick into the panels. I would paint the bottoms to seal them well and call it good at this point. If Fiber cement is sitting on a ledge and does not have the ability to breathe, it will wick water and deteroriate.

    #759832
    JohnK
    Pro

    Sorry for not providing you any informations in your case but on the occasion of ongoing conversation i want to ask if you guys would recommend me this company for siding installation buzzhomepros. I’m living in Schaumburg, IL. I’m not really a type of DYI’er so i need to hire someone.

    #759927
    Doobie
    Moderator

    I’ve started the project. It’s going pretty well. But I had a hard time getting the lower edge even across panels. I was able to flush trim the lower edge of the fiber cement siding to the bottom edge of the old siding using a flush trim bit on my router, but it left a bit of a jagged edge.

    It doesn’t look too bad, but I was thinking I’d like to cover it without some type of trim. Specifically thinking L shaped aluminum trim. Looking for something that’s thin and isn’t too noticeable. Partly why I don’t want to use 3/4” thick boards. Is there any product you guys could recommend for this application?

    Anything you put there would trap water or create a ledge for water to sit on and wick into the panels. I would paint the bottoms to seal them well and call it good at this point. If Fiber cement is sitting on a ledge and does not have the ability to breathe, it will wick water and deteroriate.

    This is 100% correct, and while I’m not the pro that Kurt is, I have dealt with JH siding install for installation purposes as an advanced DIYer and have done my homework using it for some accessory structures I’ve built on my property over the last few years and continue to do so in the process of building one now that I’m about to clad in JH Plank Horizontal 5in Reveal Cedar Faced Siding. Vertical siding rules should be no different.

    I’m not sure exactly what you are dealing with, but will offer insight that may allow you to understand better how this type of siding works and what the considerations may be for you.

    Number one rule in their install manual is to keep the ends that may be subject to water infiltration from migrating at least 2 inches away from flat or sloped off areas, no matter the degree of slope-off, and ALWAYS paint your end cuts, even if they will be caulked over.

    And that’s the requirement for my area only. Other areas in North America, JH has different tolerances that may be beyond that 2 inch parameter for my area in the Toronto area they sent me my manual specifically tailored for.

    Basically, like Kurt alluded to, if the boards will be in a water logged situation for any extended period, that is not good.

    If you look at the boards, they have no protective ‘paint’ factory coated on their undersides. That’s the real culprit, never mind those who choose to not have their end cuts unpainted and have issues well above where soaken wet snow may affect them regardless of where they are located even with end cuts painted because of their unpainted undersides in the form of simple rain effect degradation. If the undersides are in a WET situation that lasts for more than a daily event repeatedly, the boards will degrade.

    That last part I was told by one of their reps at JH I spoke to also when I asked whether I could get away with not painting end cuts that were to be caulked over anyways. He mentioned that if you have any water seepage behind the boards where your trim is and it is not painted, it is even worse insofar as how long a board end can easily degrade that has only been caulked over at its unpainted end as it is ‘trapped’ water. The ‘trapped’ water scenarios is what it is all about.

    This made sense to me, and while it’s a PITA and slows you down in the install to paint all those end pieces you are going to caulk over, it is what you need to do.

    Avoiding house wrap all the way to the the edges of where it is laid on is also not an option for this reason. House wrap allows a smooth drainage backage that ply/osb sheathing doesn’t effectively allow alone as it absorbes moisture and depending on how well the JH boards are adhered actually can create blockage of drainage affecting the underside of the boards that are again not factory paint protected whether vertical or horizontal, either can have such issues not having house wrap.

    Hardie, or any decent fiber cement siding is amazing. It lasts practically forever, but it needs to be installed properly to begin with. Yes, it’s a lot more install work than other siding, but it’s definitely more cost effective in the long run if done correctly.

    Sorry for the late reply @cls1989. Hope this helps and i explained it well enough. If not, ask further.

    Good luck!

    #761587

    All fasteners must be able to penetrate at least 1 1/4” (32mm) through nailable material, such as wood sheathing and frame (Fig. 15). In these circumstances, the fastener must be long enough to penetrate the non-nailable material and then 1 1/4” (32mm) through wood framing or other nailable material.


    Jay Carter roofing

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