Step 1: Weatherproof the walls

weatherproofing the walls
Photo: David Carmack
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Slip 12-inch-wide splines of felt behind the corner boards and the side casings next to doors and windows. If there is no housewrap or trim on the house.

Locate studs by tapping across the wall with a hammer.

Snap vertical chalk lines at each stud location, typically every 16 or 24 inches.

Bend flashing over the water table so it extends 1 inch up the wall. Secure the top edge of the flashing at the studs with 4d nails. Overlap the ends of the flashing 3 inches, and seal joints with a paintable synthetic-rubber sealant.

Staple 12-inch builder's felt above the water table so it covers the flashing.

Staple two 2-inch-wide strips over each stud line. This creates a breathing space and provides an escape route for condensation.

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    Tools List

    • speed square
      Speed Square,
      for marking story pole and swing stick
    • chalk line
      Chalk line.
      for premarking courses and for finding and marking plumb lines at stud locations
    • utility knife
      Utility knife,
      for notching clapboard and cutting felt, flashing, and waterproofing membrane
    • tacker hammer
      Hammer tacker and staples,
      for attaching builder's felt to sheathing alternative: staple gun
    • 16-foot tape measure
      Tape measure
    • caulk gun
      Caulk gun with paintable, synthetic-rubber sealant,
      for sealing ends of clapboard at casings, frieze, and corner boards
    • ladder
      Ladder or scaffolding,
      for reaching high spots
    • miter saw
      Miter saw,
      for cutting clapboards to length
    • hammer
      Hammer
    • table saw
      Table saw,
      for ripping down the starter strip

    Shopping List

    1. PRIMED RED-CEDAR CLAPBOARD

    2. BUILDER'S FELT: 15-POUND, 12-INCH-WIDE ROLL

    for protecting sheathing at water table, corner boards, and around window and door casings



    3. BUILDER'S FELT: 2-INCH-WIDE ROLL

    for covering the wall at stud locations



    4. METAL FLASHING

    for covering the top edge of the water table and window casings



    5. WATERPROOF MEMBRANE

    for protecting the tops of windows and doors



    6. 4D AND 7D STAINLESS STEEL RING-SHANK NAILS

    for attaching clapboard and flashing