I'm doing some work on the inside of an exterior wall. It's covered in nails from the siding on the outside. I know you're not supposed to flatten these kinds of nails when used in roofing. Is it safe / recommended to hammer these nails sideways so as to ease the installation of certain kinds of insulation?

  • 4
    You'll regret it if you ever need to pull those nails out... Nov 27, 2018 at 23:59
  • 1
    And you risk pushing them proud of the outside surface.
    – bib
    Nov 28, 2018 at 0:24
  • Why would a person need to do so? Is there no insulation or inner surface to your walls?
    – isherwood
    Nov 28, 2018 at 14:09

1 Answer 1


Both comments above by Harper and bib are good reasons to start, but the biggest issue I see with bending over the nails is what the nails will do as they are being bent. The shank of the nails are substantial enough as when being bent over, the nail will shift to the side before it bends. The wood that the nail is in is typically not strong enough to keep the nail perpendicular as it was originally driven, especially if it is 1/2" plywood. This increases the chance of the large head on the exterior side to crack what it is driven through or crack the material over it, if that is the case. If it is wood siding, it could crack that, if it is cement board siding, it will do bad there too, especially if it is a nail on a corner.

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