How to Install Hardie Siding

Lacy Enderson

James Hardie is the inventor of Hardie siding. Hardie siding increases the value, beauty and durability of your home. Hardie siding has long-lasting baked on color, and is resistant to weather extremes.

Install Hardie Siding

Hardie fiber cement siding is a non-combustible material and although nothing is guaranteed against fire, your home's exterior is better prepared against fire damage if Hardie siding is installed. Hardie siding is made to last for up to 50 years without rotting, cracking, termite problems or hail damage.


To make installing your Hardie siding easier, use a siding gauge to align each course. Double check your measurements every four or five courses. If two workers are hanging siding together, make sure their gauges are the same.


Never install your James Hardie siding planks in an area where it will be subjected to standing water. Never install your Hardie siding planks with staples. Never place a fastener less than 3/4-inch from the top edge of the plank.

  1. Begin at the lowest point at the side of your house where you will install your Hardie siding.

  2. Apply a 1 1/4-inch starter strip right above the water table trim located at the bottom edge of the house wall. Cut the strip with a circular saw from a Hardie siding plank.

  3. Blind nail your Hardie siding in place using 11 gauge roofing nails and a nail gun. Make sure the nails go through the siding and into the studs along the wall.

  4. Place the second Hardie siding plank above the starter strip with a 1 1/2-inch overlap. The lap hides the nails from each previous course. Shoot the nails into the planks 1 1/8-inches from the top edge.

  5. Continue installing the Hardie siding one row at a time. If you need more than one plank per row, butt the ends of the planks up against each other tight, but not too tight. The joints must connect over a stud.

  6. Place a joint flashing under the joint for weather protection. Allow 3 inches on each side of the joint.

  7. Leave a minumum of 1/8-inch gap around windows and trim in case of expansion. Apply caulking to these gaps.