What Are Soffit & Fascia & How Do They Help Protect Your Roof?

Fascia and soffit are not the first things you’d think of when the topic of roofing comes up, but they play a vital role in keeping your roof and home free from damage. We are here to explain what fascia and soffit are and why they’re essential.

What is Fascia?

The fascia is a vertical board that runs along the roof’s lower edge and sits directly underneath the roof’s overhang. These boards cover any open ends of roof rafters and trusses and act as a layer between the edge of the roof and the outdoors. Fascia can be made from wood, vinyl, or aluminum. 

The Purpose of Fascia Boards

Prevent Water Damage

The rafters and trusses are usually made of wood. The fascia forms a protective cover that prevents water from getting into them and leaking into the edges of your roof. If constantly exposed to rainwater or snow melt, these wooden areas will start to rot, causing the roof to sag and threatening its structural integrity.

Provide Solid Backing for Gutter Installation

The fascia also secures the gutter system and keeps it in place. This is no mean feat, especially during heavy rain periods. The boards need to be sturdy enough to support the weight of the water-filled gutters.

If you have wooden fascia, it’s essential to regularly clean your gutters to prevent rainwater from building up and spilling onto the fascia.

Deterrent for Unwanted Pests

Squirrels, bats, rats, sparrows, pigeons, bees, hornets, and raccoons are some of the animals that would love to make a home in your roof. A solid, well-maintained fascia denies them access to your upper space. 

Front-Facing Aesthetic Element

In addition to its functional role, the fascia board also plays an important aesthetic role. With the right materials, color, and height, the fascia creates a smoother, more even appearance for the roof’s edge.

What is Soffit?

Your roof, by necessity, will project beyond the side of your home. This overhang is known as an eave. The soffit is the material installed beneath the roof eave and tucked away under the fascia board. It basically creates an exterior ceiling. Soffits can be manufactured from vinyl, fiber cement, wood, or aluminum, and choosing a suitable material for your local climate is essential.

Why Your Home Needs Soffit

Provide Proper Ventilation

The primary function of soffits is to help ventilate the attic. Vented soffits typically feature tiny holes that allow your roof to “breathe.” Soffit vents draw cool, dry air into the attic to keep your home cooler in the summer. 

By working with roof exhaust vents, soffit vents prevent moisture buildup and help extend the life of your roof. In the winter, proper circulation precludes the formation of damaging ice dams, which can form if your eaves are too warm.

Prevent Water Damage

Like fascia boards, soffits help safeguard the roof’s integrity by protecting rafters from rain and snow. They protect the underside of your rafters from moisture & humidity so that the wooden components of your roof remain dry. This protection helps to safeguard against mold & mildew damage. 

Prevent Pest Infestation

Because the soffit covers the gaps on the underside of your rafters, it works together with your fascia to envelop your roof. Rodents, bats, hornets & other unwanted pests should not be able to access the inside of your house because the openings through the roof are closed to visitors. 

Sometimes the only way that homeowners know that they have a problem with their soffit is because these “visitors” have started causing problems inside their homes. It is best to inspect your home for soffit issues before this occurs! 

Who To Call

After finding out what fascia and soffit are, you might notice that yours need repair or replacement. In such a case, Alan’s Roofing has you covered. We are a reputable and trusted name for roofing services in Central Florida. Contact us today to learn more and get a free quote.