5 Reasons for Removing Old Siding Before Replacement

When they replace siding, a common question that homeowners face is whether they should leave the existing siding up. Do you have to remove old siding before installing new? Is there a logical reason for removing old siding before replacement?

The short answer is that removing old siding is almost always a better idea. Some homeowners may also worry they need to remove the siding themselves before the siding replacement installation, but with Weather Tight, that’s not the case. Should you choose to have the old siding removed, our trained technicians will quickly and safely strip it from the house, so you don’t need to worry about it at all.

Why would removing old siding be such an essential step of siding replacement? Here are five reasons for starting fresh.

Considering siding replacement? Here's why you should always remove old siding before replacement siding is installed

1. To Check for Wood Rot

The biggest reason for removing old siding is to find out what’s going on or lurking underneath. Wood rot, mold, and moisture damage aren’t uncommon, especially if the siding is old or wasn’t correctly installed in the first place.

If you have wood shaker-style siding or if someone painted over old aluminum siding, then you may also see that the paint is peeling or that the siding has become damaged over time. It makes sense to strip the old siding off the house so you can start fresh with a clean surface. By removing old siding, you can address wood rot and other concerns before they get out of hand.

2. To Avoid Pests

Another “surprise” that can lurk beneath your siding? Pests. When removing old siding, we often find nests of bees, squirrels, and other creatures that have taken up residence beneath the siding of a house. When we strip the old siding from a home, we’re able to make sure there aren’t any unwanted stowaways.

At times, bugs, birds, and rodents can damage the home’s walls and chew through pieces of the exterior finish. Carpenter ants and termites can eat away at the wood. We can check for these unfortunate surprises when we remove the old siding and make sure we mitigate the problem before putting up the new exterior finish.

3. To Protect from Future Water Damage

Another reason for removing old siding is that you’ll protect your home from future water damage. When new siding is layered on top of old, the fit isn’t usually seamless. It’s common to see pockets between the old and new siding or see the layers stand away from the house’s exterior, creating an unsightly space.

The spots around windows and doors become gaps where moisture can seep inside. Rain, snow, and even humidity can build up in the spaces and cause problems. When old siding isn’t properly removed, it can become a real issue for future damage, deterioration, and decay around windows, doors, and the foundation of your house.

4. Removing Old Siding Provides a Cleaner Look and Feel

Another reason for removing old siding is that it simply looks better. Layering the new siding over old often causes an incongruent look. The beautiful new vinyl siding often doesn’t match the exact size and shape of previous wood or aluminum finishes.

When you remove the old siding, you don’t need to worry about those loose pieces and gaps. With proper tucking around windows and doors, your home will have a nice, new finish that looks cohesive and put together. If you’re investing in new siding, it’s worth the effort to get it right.

5. To Enhance Your Home with Tyvek Protection

Believe it or not, your home “breathes.” The air is constantly moving around because of the activity that happens inside your home (showers, cooking, breathing, heating, and cooling). The outside air can creep into your home, and the inside air and humidity need to get out. Proper ventilation is crucial.

When we install new siding, we use a Tyvek house wrap underneath. After removing old siding, we add the wrap all around the exterior of your home. The unique material of Tyvek allows air out but won’t let air get in. This keeps your house weather-tight and protected for many years to come.

To learn more about the siding removal process, don’t miss this video from Tod & Todd. They’ll show you how siding removal works and why it’s so important.


If you’d like to know more about siding replacement, please contact one of our friendly representatives for a no-obligation quote. We’ll help you learn the benefits of replacing siding and how it can affordably increase the value and comfort of your home and enhance your curb appeal.