How to Install Exterior Wood Siding

Generally, it is easy to install the exterior wood siding. People consider this architectural design as one of the best exterior decors for their homes. In fact, people in residential areas or homeowners are often fascinated by the unfinished redwood, cedar, and cypress wood types.

These common wood types are preferred for the natural preservatives in them. The preservatives, therefore, protect them from wood rot and other wood-damaging concerns.  

Interestingly too, many people attest to the fact that wood lap siding is both durable and popular. Hence, we recommend that you pay close attention to learning how to install the exterior wood siding. 

Now, when installing wood siding on your home walls, there are primary steps you need to follow. Also referred to as horizontal siding, wood siding is easier to install when the old siding has been removed and the wall surface is smooth and free of any hard or rough edges.

Equally, you should pay attention to the manufacturer’s instructions when installing wood siding to your windows and doors. This relates mostly to the ideal gap space to leave between the material and the wall.

Read on to find out more.      

Tools Required for Installing Wood Siding

Tools & materials
  • Hammer
  • Crowbar
  • Siding nails
  • Fasteners
  • Circular saw
  • Metal flashings
  • Drip caps

Step 1: Get Your Wood Siding Materials

Before you begin to install wood siding, you need to find out if you have the right insulation or plywood sheathing. Without the best exterior cladding, you cannot successfully install the exterior wood siding.

Before you begin to install wood siding, you need to find out if you have the right insulation or plywood sheathing. Without the best exterior cladding, you cannot successfully install the exterior wood siding.

Ensure that you purchase plywood when you go out to pick up other siding supplies at the lumber yard.

Next, remove the previous cladding because it can stand in the way of the new installation. Use the crowbar or hammer to clear out all old plywood sheathing.

Step 2: Measure the Walls

Getting the width and height of your wall enables you to cut your wood siding correctly and neatly. Besides the fact that you should pay attention to local rules and regulations for building, you should also pay attention to the durability of the wood siding.

Multiply the width and height that you get and you’d have the square footage. The importance of doing your math, at this point, is that you don’t want to purchase the wrong materials. Further, remember to deduct the square footage of doors and windows from the overall square footage for accuracy.   

Step 3: Inspect Your Wall for Water Damage

Water is the worst enemy of wood. Thus, look closely at the surface area behind the previous cladding for all water damage. Remove all damaged plywood and replace it with new sheathing.

In addition, be sure that the insulation to which the plywood is fixed is also new and durable. Bottom line – fix new insulation and plywood as soon as you observe signs of moisture or water damage.

Step 4: Cut Wood Siding

Cutting the wood siding is one of the most delicate steps in the process of installing wood siding. It is important that you cut the siding carefully with a saw and avoid making jagged or rough edges.

Maintain a square shape as you cut so that all the joints align without any unevenness.     

Step 5: Install Exterior Wood Siding

The installation stage begins at the bottom and away from the foundation wall. Be careful to place the wood siding from the base and fit it upward gently.

As you fit the wood into place, nail them into the wood stud using a fastener. Be mindful of the upper and lower boards so that they are also placed correctly with the siding.

If you have any remaining wood at the upper part, don’t forget to trim the piece neatly. In addition, if you prefer to avoid trimming, ensure that your cutting is accurate.


In brief, this post has discussed five vital steps to help you install the exterior wood siding. Are you looking to enhance your home exterior?

Take advantage of this installation guide. It will help you achieve the best layout without any difficulties.

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