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Old 05-08-2014, 04:05 PM   #1
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Looking under siding


I have a 1950s/1960s house that has original wood siding that is covered up by asbestos tile siding (lap siding). Eventually (in a few years) I would like to remove all of the tile siding to expose the old wood siding. From having to fix a couple of pieces of siding that were coming loose near the foundation, I saw that they did put felt paper up. I am wanting to peak under the siding in a few places to see if the wood underneath is in good shape or if I should replace the siding with another siding. The nails holding the siding are not hidden, they are exposed (and loose) so they are fairly easy to remove and put back (done it a few times to loose pieces). Would it be possible to take a small section of siding off, cut the paper to reveal the old wood, then tape the paper back together and put the pieces of siding back up? And maybe use caulk to ensure no leaks happen. Or would I be risking definitely having moisture issues behind the siding? I really want to see the condition of the old wood before I decide to reside or not reside, but not sure how to go about it other than what I have proposed. Any advice is appreciated.

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Old 05-08-2014, 10:11 PM   #2
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Looking under siding


You said the A-word. Just complicated every answer anyone is going to give you.

Unless you are over 60, don't be fiddling around with it. When it comes to removal, depending on where you live, you have a lot of rules to go by. Some of them may be ridiculous but they are there for everyone's safety.

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Old 05-08-2014, 11:40 PM   #3
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Looking under siding


Yeah, I realize that is going to be an issue. To be honest, I don't know for sure that it is asbestos. The disclosure for the house had a question mark next to it like they didn't know and I have not had a piece tested yet, although I do plan on doing that soon. I just assume that it is based on the time period. The only nice thing about this siding is it is small tiles, probably 1.5' x 1' and like I said was "face nailed" with no blind nails that I can tell. A lot of the nails are also loose and slightly popping up so there shouldn't be any breakage and dust stirring up. They are actually pretty easy to remove as it is (I have had to remove a couple to fix one or two).

Regardless if I go with the original wood siding or I re-side, this siding needs to go. It is loose and some are starting to fall off due to improper installation. Plus, it is ugly and we have mismatched pieces with different patterns that were used as replacements. If I have to, I will hire asbestos removal company (don't want to, but will if I have to). Hopefully someone will have a suggestion for my question...
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:07 AM   #4
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Looking under siding


I know the kind you are talking about. It just has two pin-nails holding it doesn't it? Anyways, I don't see why you couldn't carefully remove it, pull the paper to check things, then just patch the area you removed with some new felt and tack it in place. Then re-install the siding. It doesn't have to be sealed, just lapped properly. I wouldn't waste the time trying to salvage 40 yr old felt.
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:07 AM   #5
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Do you have any reason to believe wood is NOT okay?

That sort of siding is very easy to remove w/out cutting, which is what would release the asbestos (if there is any). Get a pry bar and pop the nails and the tiles fall right off.

If you're concerned about the siding containing asbestos, have you considered just siding over the top of it?
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:45 PM   #6
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Looking under siding


Check to see what the rules are for removal in your area are first. Here a home owner can do it them self and I believe toss it in the trash. As a contractor we have to be trained in the removal, double bag it label it, set up a day to take it to the dump, can't be mixed with other trash. All so they can throw it in a hole and drive over it. In fact we are required to hand unload it from the dump truck, yet when you get to the dump they tell you just to dump like normal.

Siding is easier then roof flashings. Remove in whole pieces and box them up (according to state/city rules) The dust is what is bad for you. Wear a respirator if you are worried.
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:39 PM   #7
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Looking under siding


Your proposed method should be fine, as O&B said just be sure to lap everything properly when you put it back together... And don't cut or eat any of the material
One thing to keep in mind though, is that peeking a small sample size may not give you a great indication of the condition of the original siding. Most of it may be fine, but there trouble spots that would throw a wrench in those plans once its all exposed.
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Old 05-10-2014, 12:44 AM   #8
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Thanks everybody for your advice. I figured it would not be a problem but sometimes I don't see a problem with a plan until somebody points it out OR I find it while in the process of the project (usually the case ).

I don't think putting new siding over the existing is an option for two reasons- 99% of the siding is loose and periodically will fall off or be so loose that it hangs at an angle. And the existing siding is even with most of the trim. So if new siding went up over the existing, I would have to buildout every piece of trim.

If I remember the rules for asbestos removal around here, I think I can remove it as a homeowner, but I would have to double bag and label it before disposal. I will have to double check that when I actually start removing it permanently.

Homesealed, the fact that there may be pieces of the wood siding that would need to be replaced is what has kept me from removing the siding thus far. I just can't afford the money or time right now to cut and replace wood siding. At the moment the only area that I have noticed that is rotted and will need to be replaced is the wood siding at the foundation wall (that is primarily where I have to fix the tile siding). Hopefully that is all that will need replacing.

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