Expert Advice on Aluminum Cladding Installation

Are you thinking of replacing the aluminum cladding on your home or office? It is not as challenging as it may seem. All you need is a bit of do-it-yourself know-how and the right tools.

Aluminum composite panel installation, or aluminum cladding can be done along with windows replacement as part of your home improvement projects.

Continue reading for tips on how to install aluminum cladding as well as other helpful information.

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What is Aluminum Cladding?

Aluminum cladding has been around since approximately the second World War and is used to cover exteriors of businesses or homes. Modern versions are designed to resemble 

traditional wood, shingles or other varieties of cladding. As well, they are manufactured with coatings that have been prefinished to withstand harsh weather conditions so they will not warp or rot.

One of the benefits of aluminium style cladding is that it has natural insulations properties. These insulation properties can be further enhanced if installed over foam board style insulation.

Aluminium Cladding Installation Guide

Step 1: Crack a line of chalk above the ground (at least 8 inches high). Use a metal starter strip and large headed aluminum nails to fasten a metal starter strip. The nails should go in the center of the slots. Take care to not nail them in completely. This is due to the fact that aluminum needs space as it tends to contract and expand with changing weather conditions. At the corners, nail J-channel posts in which the panels will be fitted. These should be plumb and nailed every 12 inches.

Step 2: Insert the first aluminum cladding panel ingo the starter strip firm. Next, mail it to the wall studs, making sure to go in the top through the slots. Taking care to leave approximately one-eight of an inch it to expand, slide the panel into the corner of the J-channel. Making sure the panels overlap, keeping the front one on top of the next, start at the back. This will give a more sleek and finished look. Keep adding the aluminum panels by sliding the new panel at the bottom into the top of the previous one in the slot, thus locking it firmly in place. Next nail the top part into the slots. Always nail in the center of each slot and remember not to drive the nail in completely. Cut panels with a metal saw or tin snips if needed to stagger the seams throughout. 

Step 3: Next the window and door trim will be affixed to the proper openings. But first you will need to add caulking to the opening as this will ensure that they are watertight as well as air tight to prevent leaks and air drafts. This will help further insulate your home and can have a direct affect on lowering your heating and cooling costs. 

First nail the top trim, followed by the sides and bottom (for windows). Every 12 inches, the trim should be nailed. On the sides, you will do so at the first vertical slot along the top, followed by the center. As you reach each panel, slide the panels into the trim pieces. Use a metal saw or trim snips to trim the panels to properly fit the door or window trim, again leaving around one-eight of an inch for expansion in cold weather conditions. Finally, apply gutter seal adhesive on those panels which are under window sills.

Step 4: At the top of the wall, install F-channel trim. Similar to J-channel trim, F-channel trim is used to secure the wall panels at the top. The panels will fit into the F-channel, thus securing them in place. Make sure to measure and cut them so they fit properly, once again leaving one-eight of an inch to allow for expansion. 

If you need further assistance on installing aluminum style cladding, be sure to contact NorthTech Windows and Doors. Our expert staff can assist you with whatever you need, from installation advice to a quote for energy efficient windows and doors. Call us today to set up a time for a free in home consultation.

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