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FAQs: Soffit, Fascia, and Siding Repair in Northern Virginia

If your home has weathered a storm or two, or just suffered a lot of regular wear and tear over time, you may be wondering if your siding, soffits, and fascia boards need repairs or replacement. You may also be wondering what the heck soffits and fascia boards are, which is understandable!

This guide from the team of siding experts at Mr. Handyman of Northern Virginia - Arlington to Haymarket will answer frequently asked questions about these three key areas of your home's exterior, as well as explain the signs that your siding, soffits, and fascias are crying out for care.

What Are Soffits and Fascia Boards?

While you probably know what siding is—the cladding material on the outside of your house—you might not be familiar with the terms "soffit" and "fascia," which are not as commonly used by laypeople.

Sometimes referred to as a roofline, fascia boards are the trim on the edge of your roof eaves that sits parallel to the exterior wall of your building and are usually where rain gutters are attached to the roof. Soffit boards are the panels that sit underneath the part of the roof that overhangs the wall (they're what you see if you stand under the eaves then look straight up) and they are usually ventilated. Common materials are wood, vinyl, aluminum, or composite.

It may seem like they're just there to trim your roof and give it a clean, finished look, but soffits and fascias perform some critical functions to protect your home, including:

  • Venting excess heat and moisture out of your attic

  • Preventing moisture from entering your attic and causing water damage such as wood rot in the rafters

  • Blocking unwelcome pests such as rats, squirrels, wasps, and termites from entering your home through the roof

How Do They Get Damaged?

Fascia and soffits can be damaged by several different factors, such as rough weather and pest infestations, but by far the number-one cause of damage for American houses is overflowing gutters. Your gutters are attached to the fascia, and if they can't carry out their purpose of draining rainwater away from your roof, the water spills out and pours down the fascia and across the soffits instead, causing moisture damage. Mr. Handyman provides gutter services that include cleaning and repair. We can also install gutter guards so they won't fill up as fast in the future.

What Are the Signs of Soffit and Fascia Damage?

Your soffits and fascia should be part of your annual maintenance checklist to make sure your home is in solid condition for another year. Look closely for these signs that they've suffered damage:

  • Gutters are overflowing

  • Gutters are broken or pulling away from the fascia

  • Visible signs of bird, rodent, or insect nests

  • Peeling, chipping, or flaking paint

  • Ventilation issues inside your home such as excess condensation

  • An HVAC system working harder than it used to

  • Visible holes, cracks, or gaps in the soffit or fascia boards

  • Discoloration on the boards

  • Patches of wood rot on wooden boards

What Are the Types of Siding?

You likely already know what type of siding is used on your property, but it's good to know what the siding materials are in case replacement is in your future.

Popular siding options include:

  • Vinyl

  • Wood, natural or engineered

  • Shingle or cedar siding

  • Fiber cement siding

  • Brick veneer siding

  • Natural stone

  • Synthetic stone veneer

  • Stucco

  • Aluminum

How Can You Tell If You Need Siding Repair?

When you're inspecting your exterior cladding for any type of damage or siding defects, walk around the entire house and thoroughly examine it from as many angles as possible, including from a distance and up close, watching for the following symptoms of damage.

Cracks or Gaps

Any holes, cracks, gaps, or missing pieces of siding need to be repaired or replaced right away. They can let water inside of walls, causing extensive damage and costly challenges for homeowners — such as mold, mildew, and wood rot — that not only jeopardize structural stability, but also have a negative effect on your family's health.

They also allow pests such as rats and termites to enter your home, and once they've found a way in, they'll bring dozens of their nasty little friends along with them.

Increased Utility Bill

If your heating and cooling costs have gone up even though your usage hasn't changed, your cladding could be to blame—especially if you notice cool drafts coming from walls, light switches, and electrical sockets. An energy-efficient, insulated vinyl replacement can drastically lower your utility costs.

Bulging and Warping

This is why it's important to look at your cladding from as many angles as possible. Even if there's no visible holes or cracks, there could be warping where the material is bulging outwards or cupping inwards. That's a clear sign that something is wrong, and unfortunately the "something" is usually moisture damage.

Interior Moisture Damage

Speaking of water damage, have you noticed any signs of it inside your home? Damp walls, rotting window and door frames, water stains on the ceiling, and musty smells are all indications that your cladding could be damaged and letting moisture into your house.

Mr. Handyman is Your Northern Virginia Siding Repair Expert!

If you're in need of repairs or replacement for your soffits, fascia, or cladding, you need a handyman who can tackle your siding project along with regular maintenance, all while providing quality service and a legendary customer experience. Mr. Handyman of Northern Virginia - Arlington to Haymarket can handle all that and much more.

Give us a call today at 703-621-4817 or request service online to find out more about how we can improve your home and make your life easier!