I have a detached garage built in the 1960's that is clad in tongue and groove siding with no sheathing. The wood is still in good shape but the surface is very worn, presumably from overly aggressive use of power tools during past paint jobs but I can't say for certain. I'm trying to figure out if the siding is worth salvaging. Below are some pictures to give a sense for the kind of damage I'm talking about. Options I'm considering including sanding, heat gun, chemical stripper, wood filler and/or new siding. What do you recommend? Given the age of the garage, I also have to consider the potential presence of lead paint.

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  • 1
    Much of the offense is from incomplete scraping. Some looks like water/sun damage from leaving peeled off paint for too long before repainting. Start with a lead test.
    – Ecnerwal
    Nov 16, 2023 at 14:07
  • You could probably salvage it as a DIY project but it would require a tremendous amount of sanding that you wouldn't want to do if lead is present. Get it tested.
    – JACK
    Nov 16, 2023 at 14:14
  • This looks like "shiplap" siding to me, not t&g.
    – isherwood
    Nov 16, 2023 at 14:54
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    Your question seems to be a poll asking for opinions on whether to restore or replace. Please revise to ask something specific and objective in accordance with the help center.
    – isherwood
    Nov 16, 2023 at 14:55

1 Answer 1


New siding over the old avoids most of the issues with (potential) lead paint and is less cleanup than paint removal anyway. Might add a layer of housewrap as well, and "graduate" the old siding to being sheathing.

None of that really looks like "overly aggressive power tool damage" - much of it is "underly aggressive paint scraping" and some of it (the cracking) looks like weather damage from paint peeling off and bare wood being left exposed to the weather for a long time before it got painted again.

  • New siding, good idea.
    – JACK
    Nov 16, 2023 at 14:16

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