What Are Fascia and Soffits?
Soffits are the surfaces directly under the eaves while fascia is the horizontal boards that run along the lower edge of the roof. While these components can enhance the aesthetic of your home, they’re far from just decorative. Fascia offers structural support to the gutter system and thereby help keep moisture out of your home. Soffits provide ventilation for the attic and also keep your home protected from unwelcome weather elements. Both soffits and fascia play a role in preventing pests from entering your home.
Lifespan and Maintenance of Soffits and Fascia
Most fascia and soffits are fabricated from plywood, aluminum or vinyl. When you clean out your gutters—you should do this once or twice a year—inspect your eavestroughs, soffits, and fascia. Look for indications of warping, degradation or worn out caulking. Signs of pests—birds, squirrels or wasps—should also be noted and dealt with immediately. Aluminum and vinyl soffits and fascia need little maintenance beyond this inspection. Additionally, if you spot mold or mildew it’s best to remove it. Both aluminum and vinyl can last a couple of decades before needing to be replaced. Wood fascia and soffits, however, usually have a shorter lifespan and require more maintenance. They should be painted or stained every few years.
Signs Repair or Replacement May Be Needed
- Droopy gutters
- Leaky gutters
- Ice Damming
- Frost in the attic
- Interior water damage
- Pest infestation
- Wood deterioration