The tools required to install HardieShingle Siding are a pair of manual, electric or pneumatic fiber cement shears and a pneumatic nail gun or hammer. The siding must be installed over a water-resistant barrier with the proper flashing around all windows, doors and other openings. Instructions are available on HardieInstallation.com.
James Hardie highly recommends that homeowners hire a professional contractor to install HardieShingle Siding. In addition to the basic tools, the installer should use a flush mount attachment on the pneumatic tool to avoid over-driving the nails.
The installer may use a circular saw to cut HardieShingle Siding outside as long as he takes precautions. The siding contains crystalline silica, which has been linked to respiratory disease and certain cancers. Shears must be used when cutting indoors to minimize dust exposure, and all cut ends must be caulked, primed or painted.
James Hardie products must be painted within 90 days if they are unprimed or 180 days if primed. ColorPlus products do not need to be painted, but non-ColorPlus versions of HardieShingle Siding require a field-applied prime coat. James Hardie recommends 100 percent acrylic primers and topcoats, which should be applied according to the manufacturer's instructions. Stain, oil or alkyd base paint and powder coating could damage the siding and should not be used.