The plan was to scrape off the loose paint and repaint our small, ranch-style house. There’s a lot of loose paint on this old house which meant it would take a lot of scraping. But after I started the scraping, I realized the wide planks of western cedar siding are in worse shape than I first realized. In fact, they’re in worse shape than I second and third realized!
Many of the boards are cracked and split and several of them are badly cupped as well. That’s a shame, too. These boards are a full inch thick and twelve inches wide. Cut and milled back in the middle of the previous century. They would have still been in good shape, if they’d been kept painted. They weren’t, they aren’t, and they’re not going to be.
Some things get beyond reasonable repair and they have to be replaced. Ten years ago, fifteen years ago, a new coat of paint would have kept the wood protected from the sun, moisture and mildew that eventually grew back up underneath the loosening edge.
It will be a lot of work, tearing off the old siding and installing new. A lot of work.
But it will make the house look new and that’s not altogether insignificant. Another thing the new siding will do, and this ultimately is more important; it will keep the exterior sheathing and the frame from rotting. Keep the walls sound and the insides dry, even during the driving storm and the pounding rain.
I’m pretty sure that keeping a life safe and sound is both better and easier than trying to rebuild one.