To keep your home in the best shape possible, it’s important to learn about the parts of your home and how they function together.
While soffit and fascia may be words you’ve never heard before, they’re two important parts of your home’s roof.
Soffit and fascia are a part of your home’s line of defense against the elements, meaning they help keep you and your home’s structure safe. Here’s what you need to know about where they are, how they function, and how you can keep them in good condition.
WHAT IS SOFFIT
Soffit is the material that covers the underside of your roof overhang. It may be made out of wood, aluminum, fiber cement, vinyl, or any other finishing material, and it’s there for both functional and aesthetic purposes.
Do you have it? You can tell by going outside and looking up at your roof. If your roof doesn’t have an overhang, you don’t have soffits.
Soffit protects rafters, and therefore your home, from the elements. It can be ventilated or solid, and it reduces the chance of mold forming by keeping moisture away from the rafters. Soffit also ensures proper ventilation of the roof and blocks animals from gaining access to your attic.
WHAT IS FASCIA
Fascia board is located along the overhang of your roof and it holds the gutters in place. It essentially creates a barrier between the roof and the outside, so like soffit, it helps keep the roof — and your home — safe from moisture. If water does find its way behind the fascia board, it’s often due to issues such as ice dams or clogged gutters.
Many fascia boards are made out of wood and inevitably decay over time. If you have wooden fascia boards, make sure they are pressure treated to withstand the elements. Other common materials that fascia is made out of include PVC, fiber cement, and aluminum. In the case of aluminum, this material is trimmed and wrapped around the wood underneath to finish and protect. It’s probably the best and most durable solution of all.
Fascia also serves an aesthetic purpose. It helps your home’s curb appeal since it’s the horizontal strip at the end of your rafters that makes your roof look finished.
HOW TO CARE FOR SOFFIT AND FASCIA
Just like other areas of your home, soffit and fascia require some care and attention.
Keeping your gutters clean is key to the well-being of your fascia and soffit. So when you clean and inspect your gutters — which you should do at least once a year — also take a look at how your fascia and soffit are holding up.
Soffit and fascia can be cared for by rinsing them with water, cleaning with a power washer on a low setting (caution – if your soffit is ventilated do not aim the water directly into the vents) then cleaning with a detergent with the spray tip on your power washer. Be sure to dilute if your detergent is concentrated. Spray your soffits and fascia again to rinse. If you don’t have a pressure washer, this process can also be done with a garden hose and sponge.
For vented soffit, use compressed air to clear out any debris. If your soffit or fascia has any mold or mildew growth, clean it gently by using a brush and a combination of water and bleach. Not only will soffit and fascia look better after being cleaned, but they’ll also be more efficient.
Soffit should also be properly sealed to avoid water damage and prevent any pests from getting through to your attic, so check it for any holes or gaps. If your soffit or fascia appears to be rotting, cracking, rusting, or fading in color it’s a sign that the moisture-resistant coating is wearing off — it’s time to get it replaced.
PROTECT YOUR HOME
If you’re getting your siding or roof replaced, that can be a great time to replace your soffit and fascia. Trust professionals to get the job done right. Proper installation will prevent issues down the road.
At Big C Lumber, we carry high-quality aluminum soffit and other roofing products and accessories. Contact us today so we can help you choose the right materials to protect your home and everything in it!