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I did my house when I lived in FL. After 15 years of paying for "20 year" paint every 3 years applied by professionals, I decided to do it myself. (Siding was the R B & B ply) For sanding, I used a craftsman 6" disk sander and 24 grit disks (went through 4 boxes and it took me about 3 weeks, interrupted by that thing called a job). Took it down to bare wood where the sun had ate the paint up and all places where it was peeling. (which was about all the walls from about 2' below the eaves). Found out that the main problem was that one of the first paint jobs had oil based primer/paint. As moisture entered the wood, it would lift off the oil based stuff as it could not "breath" out the moisture. Reprimed with latex based primer and used two coats of Lowe's Signature series paint. Five years later, when I sold the house, I did pressure wash it and applied one more coat of paint, which I would not have done had I not been selling it as the paint was still in good shape, altho starting to chalk some.
Bottom line, remove all loose stuff, knock off all the chalked finish on the tight paint, and use latex primer/paint when refinishing. If this paint job is oil based, and not too many years old, consider getting the majority of the paint off.