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Today we’re going to teach you how to mount speakers to vinyl siding, because there is no such thing as a party without the jams.
Extension cords are tacky and might fall short, or cause a tripping hazard; playing loud music from inside the house doesn’t work at all. Tune into these steps and learn how to safely and properly set up an outdoor entertainment area.
1. Figure out where to put the speakers
To optimize the party sounds during party time, one speaker will ideally go up high (not more than ten feet) on one side of the patio, and the other speaker will sit at the same height on the opposite side.
This will ensure maximum coverage of the patio or party area, but be careful not to separate them by more than twenty feet.
This will cause your guests to only hear one half of the song and that’s just against the party code. There are also structural elements that must also be taken into consideration.
At the very least, there should be some wood under that siding. Be sure of what’s underneath, because this will determine how and where to mount the speakers.
If there is indeed wood, like plywood sheets under the siding, then you will be able to easily drill into it. When drilling right into plywood we recommend using anchor bolts, as they are designed to ensure a sturdy, reliable hold.
Ideally, your speakers will be as close to the audio source as possible, to minimize the amount of wiring needed.
Outdoor speakers will come with a set of installation instructions, but there are things to consider before you purchase them. There may be 2×4 studs that you can drill into.
There’s a handy tool called a Stud Finder available at home improvement stores. Unfortunately, it doesn’t find handsome men, but will certainly find a plank of wood in the wall.
Simply hold it up against the wall, press in the button to activate the sensor, and drag it horizontally until it beeps and indicates a stud. Then release the button and move up a foot or two, and go horizontally again, until you reach where the stud should be.
You will have to drill the speaker bracket into the stud because vinyl siding alone is not strong enough to hold speakers. The wood bracing your home will be strong enough. Trust it.
Mark where the hole(s) will go, and then do the same along the rest of the wall, wherever you want your speakers to go.
If there are no studs in your walls, at least none that are available to drill into, get yourself some anchor bolts.
To drill into siding, go near the top of the siding where it’s most narrow. Siding itself is not strong enough to hold a speaker; try it, and the siding will sag and potentially drop your speaker.
So drill a hole, insert an anchor, and then bolt the mounting bracket into place. It is crucial that your screws are galvanized, so as not to wear down, and are long enough to penetrate the siding and the frame of the house to keep sturdy.
Another option is a mounting block, which is an industry standard for mounting all equipment (like lighting, etc.) to exterior surfaces. No matter what you use to mount the speakers, you will have to seal each hole with silicone to prevent moisture getting in.
Any wiring will ideally be hidden in the wall to maximize aesthetics but also to protect it from the elements. Water and electricity do not mix, as we all know.
We don’t want the wires to rust, either. You will drill a hole behind where the speaker will go, so that the hole is hidden, and feed the wiring through this and out the other side to an electrical outlet.
Any good outdoor speakers will come with some kind of mounting system. You may want to hide them up under the eave (soffit) or under an overhang.
Just remember: all good homes will have a wooden frame with studs that you can drill into. Find the studs, and use long enough screws, and your speakers should be good to go.
Finally, make sure the speakers you purchase really are meant for outdoor use. They will be made of a plastic fiber or coated paper and this will allow them to hold up to rain, etc.
No matter how durable, though, we always recommend bringing those babies in during winter.
A quick tip is to get a separate plastic mount that you attach to the permanent mount (which will go into the siding). Simply remove the speaker on the plastic mount before snowfall.
Here is an additional video on how to install a receptacle into vinyl siding, which we found informative.