How do I go about replacing siding and restoring the door?

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I’m not super experienced but I’d like to see if I can try and spruce up this old shed. The bottom left of the siding is rotten and needs replacing and the door is in some need of major TLC especially around the bottom. Some of the trim needs to be replaced as well. I’d like any tips or steps I should take or something. Thanks!

q how do i go about replacing siding and restoring the door
  9 answers
  • Cynthia H Cynthia H on Jul 20, 2020

    Hi! The repairs themselves aren't huge, but, I think your biggest problem is it is sitting on the ground, and the moisture from the ground is causing your rot problems. If it is off the ground, I would clear away the grass around it, and anything else around it, maybe putting something else around it. You could slope away from the structure itself to improve drainage.

    If it is sitting on the ground, it needs to be up off the ground with space under it for air to circulate.

    I honestly can't tell from the picture, but, I wouldn't spend a lot of time, effort and money, until the water damage's cause is addressed. Otherwise, you'll continue to have exactly the same problem. Good luck and stay safe!

  • Flipturn Flipturn on Jul 21, 2020

    What are your short term and long term goals for the shed?

    How are you hoping to use it if you could fix it up?


    Before beginning to spend any money on trying to improve the shed, make sure you know the extent of the damage. Often with wood rot, there can be more hidden problems that what originally can be seen.


    Price out the cost of all materials and tools needed to bring it up to a condition that you would be comfortable with.


    It may not be cost effective to try to renovate it.

  • Zard Pocleeb Zard Pocleeb on Jul 21, 2020

    Okay...the wood to the left of the door (and the rest of the shed) is very common and it’s called T1-11. It comes in 4’ x 8’ sheets and it’s not super expensive. A sheet will run you about $35, and It’s readily available at any home center.


    To replace the bad part around the window by first removing the trim, then the bad piece. Now here you have an advantage because you now have a template of what you need (the bad piece). Just lay the bad piece Over the new one and trace. The only part you won’t be able to trace around is the bottom where it’s eaten away. For the height take a measurement from the top where the old piece was, and down to the ground. You can do the cutout around the window with either a circular saw or a jigsaw. Try to be as careful and accurate as possible, but remember that the trim will hide most of it. Next install your T1-11 with nails. Now caulk around the window, then install the trim. Now caulk around the outside, and the inside of the trim. You’re now ready for paint. When you see how easy this part of the job went you might want to put new sheathing on the entire shed.


    As far as the door goes, this will be trickier. From what I’m seeing, it looks like a homemade door. I can think of many

    in-depth fixes requiring special tools that most homeowners don’t have (table saw, router and bits, router table, etc.) What I’m getting at is you only have a couple of options. You can buy a new door, or make one yourself. If you buy one make sure it’s an exterior door. The problem with this door is that it’s on a shed and it probably won’t be a standard size door, so you might be stuck with building your own door. Doors are built in sections and pieces so it can be hard to remove the dead wood without tearing up the whole door. But, here goes. Most doors are either 1-1/4”, or 1-1/2” thick, so measure the thickness. The main part of the door (known as the ‘field’) will be made from 3/4” pressure treated plywood. Again, use the old door as a template to make your marks for cutting the plywood. You’re ready to cut the filler pieces (the raised parts). Now, if the thickness of the old door is 1-1/2” you already have 3/4” thickness from the plywood. This means you’ll need your filler pieces to be 3/8” thick, one for each side (3/8” + 3/8” + 3/4”= 1-1/2”. When you assemble the door make sure to use an exterior wood glue. Personally, I like Titebond brand, but there are many others. When you’re finished assembling everything make sure you caulk every place where the filler pieces meet the plywood. You’re ready to drill holes for the hinges. For this you can use the hinges as a template. Now you can paint, and hang your new door

  • Holly Lengner - Lost Mom Holly Lengner - Lost Mom on Jul 21, 2020

    The siding doesn't look like it's in bad condition. Give it a good cleaning with a power washer, then a fresh coat paint could do wonders.

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Jul 21, 2020

    If you can match it, you can replace only the section that is rotten. It can be cut with a skil saw then pried away. If you can't match it, it would look better to remove the whole piece and replace. As for trim, pry with a crowbar to remove. I would replace it with plastic so it will never rot. If the door isn't rotten, it can be cleaned/sanded/painted with a good exterior paint. You might use enamel paint so that it is extra protection.

  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on Jul 21, 2020

    It looks to me as though the shed has a concrete pad under it and a "real" roof over it. The repairs won't be terribly expensive and storage is so valuable that doing anything from sanding & painting to replacing the bottom area would be worth doing unless you've got the funds to start over with all new.

  • E m E m on Jul 21, 2020

    Easiest way for the siding would be to scrape away rotten wood and then put a wide piece of trim board along the bottom, paint and caulk well. This will last for years.

  • Janice Janice on Jul 24, 2020

    Looks as if you could scrub the damaged areas on both the door and below the window and add a wide trim board across the damaged area of the shed. Also, the door looks sturdy so all could be painted well with Kilz or another stainblocking primer, then paint the entire shed. I'd suggest you plant a few perrenials at the base of the shed so when it rains the dirt won't be as likely to splash up onto the shed. This could turn into a really cute asset to your yard! Have fun with it.

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