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Repair Your Aluminum Siding Damage with a Replacement Piece
Written by Peter Malik   
Friday, 17 September 2010 20:18

Unless you live in the middle of a desert, your aluminum-sided house is not immune to damage. (Even if you live in a desert your home would not be immune to rolling cacti and sandstorms.) Storms knock poles and gutters down, trees fall over, and rolling objects roll on a course to collision. As durable as aluminum siding is, there may be a time when a piece of siding has to be replaced. A strong arm, a good knife and some roofing cement can help you do the job.

Look at the damage and your cutting skills and ask yourself if it will be easier to replace a whole piece, or to cut off just the damaged area. Replacing the whole piece will leave a seamless finish compared to replacing a part of a whole piece of siding.

If you decide to replace a whole piece, start with cutting the damaged piece of siding lengthwise, horizontally, removing the bottom and leaving the top. The top part will be used to glue the replacement on. If your aluminum siding is the type that simulates a double row of siding, start your slicing about one inch over the center line. If you want to cut out just the section that is damaged, start with vertical cuts, approximately 12 inches from the outer side edges of the piece of siding. Then slice horizontally between cuts.

After you cut the damaged siding, you're going to cut your new piece of siding. First, make sure that the new replacement piece of siding extends three inches beyond the ends of the damaged siding. If you're cutting out a smaller section, make sure the new piece extends six inches. Take that piece of siding and cut off the upper edge that has slots in it.

Now it's time for the sticky part. Get some roofing cement or adhesive caulking compound and spread a good gooey amount over the piece of cut siding that is still on the house, and spread it on the ends of the siding panel that is on the house next to the spot where the replacement piece will be put on. Take your new siding piece, with the slots cut off, align it and press it on to the cement or caulk. Make sure the new replacement siding has the top cut edge snug behind the lower edge of the overlapping siding that hangs over it. The lower edge of the new piece of aluminum siding should be over the top edge of the piece below it. Press down on the siding to get the adhesive to spread and stick. The cement will be enough to secure the new siding, but you can tighten things up by adding some blind rivets – which work just like screws.

Aluminum siding is thin enough to allow repairs to appear inconspicuous. Replacing a piece of aluminum siding is often easier than trying to bust out some dents and grooves. If you can cut through thin metal, it's a job you can do yourself. Whether it's a rolling cactus or a hailing rain storm that threatens your siding, you'll be able to keep your house standing tall and looking damage-free with a quick replacement piece that's ready to take on another falling tree.