Building a Home – Windows and Siding
The windows and siding were all delivered on the same day. The framers were also the ones who were to put up the siding and install the windows. Several windows had been installed by the time I got there. “New construction” windows have a nailing fin around the exterior face of the window. Workers would first run a heavy bead of caulk around the inside of the window frame. Then they would place the window in the frame and nail the fin from the outside to secure it. Finally, they ran a weather-proofing tape over top of the fin to further seal the window. (Our general contractor would later say that the homes being built nowadays are so airtight that an external air supply is necessary for gas fireplaces to work properly, else they consume all the oxygen in the house). Video of window being installed.
Our siding is made of Hardie fiber cement. It’s extremely durable, weatherproof, paint-ready, and carries a 30 year warranty. To prepare the home for siding, the crew ran chalk lines horizontally so that each piece of siding would be level along each face of the house. Next, they trimmed all the corners and edges with a thick board-like version of the Hardie material. They then installed the Hardie lap siding, starting at the bottom of the walls and working their way up. The whole siding process only took a couple days to complete. Video of siding being hung.
The only thing that had been holding the porch roof up to this point were four 2x4s, so I was happy to see the 1/2″ thick fiberglass pillars being pulled out of their boxes. The pillars come in a standard size and are then cut down to the proper length. (Video of pillar being cut with a skill saw). Before they can go up, however, a strap must be installed to hold the roof down in high winds. They drilled a hole in the concrete in the four locations where the posts were to go, then bolted down the metal straps with long concrete screws. The straps were then threaded up through the pillars, wrapped around the porch header and nailed down. Video of pillars being put in.