Importance of Back Priming When Installing Wood Siding

Back priming consists of applying a coat of primer to the reverse side and edges of boards before installing. Back priming helps prevent paint from peeling by reducing the amount of water vapor that passes through the wood.

When back priming, be sure to prime the ends of each piece after it has been cut to fit, since end grain will absorb the most moisture. Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information


  1. Hi. Thanks for the video. I just painted front and sides of my new pine wood siding. I’m new to this so I asked the guy at the paint shop if I needed to prime. He said two coats of the paint should be fine. Now I’m seeing that I should have primed. What will be the repercussions of not priming. Also, I haven’t done the back yet. Should I use primer or use the paint that I currently have?
    The paint is the highest quality exterior paint I could find. Thanks for any help.

  2. I wanted to prime the inside of my t 111 to help keep mold out. I understand from this site that it will also help so outside paint won’t peel. Do i then need to cover the inside primed wood with a final coat of paint or is priming enough.

    • Hi, Linda!
      Priming is enough (and, as Joe said in the video, it’s the most affordable, effective option!)
      Thanks for your question.

  3. I’m having rotten soffitt and fascia replaced on one side of our home. Contractor is insisting the new wood soffitt should absolutely not be painted on the back side or edge, leave raw to breathe. I’m concerned


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