Vinyl siding installation instructions

Part of the vinyl siding installation instructions are the placement of the trim and accessories. Exterior vinyl or aluminum siding can make such a difference in your home construction projects. Installation of things like J-channel and other siding accessories is easy and fun to work with.

Before the vinyl panels can be put on, all trim accessories have to be put in place.
That includes flashing, soffit and fascia, J-channel, F-channel, utility trim, starter strip, inside corner posts and outside corner posts.

The best place to start is up on the eaves because the soffit should be finished before the wall panels go on, that way you get a nice even fit between the J-channel that holds the soffit panels and the utility trim that holds the top vinyl panel. Let’s begin with the soffit and fascia installation.

utility trim

In the picture of my roof above we can see the how the different accessories fit together to make a neat appearance. It all fits together tight and creates a good protection barrier from the weather.

The next part of installing vinyl siding is the eaves and soffit. The first thing to do when siding the eaves and soffit is to put up the J-channel or the F-channel on each side of the eave so that the soffit panels just slide in.

vinyl siding eaves

You can see the difference between an open and closed eave as in the drawings above. The open eave needs the F-channel and the enclosed eave will need to have the J-channel attached.


The soffit panels come in different lengths and styles. They also come in vented or unvented varieties depending on the amount of vents you put in your eaves to create air flow and prevent rot.

You can just cut them to fit up into the J-channel or F-channel. You’re probably better off with metal soffit than with vinyl because it is stronger.

It’s very common to use metal soffit with vinyl siding. The fascia is usually made of metal as well and it just fits into place with the bottom fitting over the J-channel and the top will fit up into the utility trim. This means that the top of the fascia needs to have snap-lock lugs punched into it.

These snap-lock lugs should be spaced about 6 inches apart and they should only be about 1/8 inch below the top of the fascia so that they make a good connection with the utility trim.

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