Installing fiber cement siding is not that different than installing wooden siding. So gather the materials and equipment and get busy.
Materials and tools needed include a dust collecting circular saw, a 71/4″ carbide-tipped blade that is specially designed to cut fiber cement siding, a speed square, nailing gun, air compressor, stainless steel nails and a hammer as well as hearing and eye protection
The first step to installing fiber cement siding is to backprime all the surfaces, ends and edges of wood trim if it is to be used. Backpriming is simply painting the wood before installation and two coats is usually preferred.
Next, 30# felt paper should be cut in small pieces that will be used for flashing. These pieces of felt paper will need to be cut 2 inches wide and 2 inches longer than the fiber cement siding. Slide a piece of this precut felt paper up to 1/4 of an inch from the bottom of the fiber cement piece that is being installed. There should be about an inch of felt paper up under the fiber cement piece that is being installed and the rest of the felt paper that is exposed will be covered when the next piece of siding is installed.
Stainless steel nails are recommended for installing fiber cement siding. The reason for this is that stainless steel nails do not bend as easy and they do not rust.
Read all the manufacturer instructions. They are very important to making the installation process go as the manufacturer recommends. Reading the instructions and being familiar with the process is important even if a contractor is hired to do the job. It never hurts to check on things that are being done to ones home.
Fiber cement siding is a good choice, especially for a change. As tough as fiber cement siding is, it is flexible, but only somewhat and is not brittle.It can be also be nailed and drilled. Installation of this type siding is very similar to installing traditional wood siding, so anyone who has installed wood siding will be capable of installing fiber cement siding.
The layout process for fiber cement siding is the same as for installing wood siding. Use a pencil and mark the stud locations on the foundation and on the soffit, being careful to place the mark where it will not be covered with building paper. After marking the stud locations, install the building paper, grab a chalk line and place it from each stud mark. Now snap the chalk line that will act as a guide for nailing and placing each siding joint.
Now begin installing the fiber cement siding. The first piece is placed on the chalk line. This piece is actually a piece of scrap fiber siding that sits either just above the foundation or just above the water table trim. This first piece made out of scrap siding is necessary because when installing siding each piece will overlap the piece immediately below it.
The next piece of fiber cement siding is installed directly to the first one that has already been installed. Be sure to put the tar paper piece on the butt of the siding before installing the next piece. Nail the piece of siding in place with a nail gun and stainless steel nails, sixteen inches apart. It is good to nail into a stud whenever possible. Now the next piece of fiber cement siding can be installed.
Continue installing the siding as mentioned above. But, notch the siding to fit places such as under windows. Install fiber cement siding up to the frieze board, which is the strip of wood that is directly below the soffit.