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

A handyman installing new sections of brick veneer siding on the outside of a house during a siding repair job.

Are you looking for ways to lower your energy bills and improve the look of your home's exterior? Damaged siding causes your house to lose energy efficiency, raising your energy costs considerably. Manassas siding repair can help lower your utility bill and boost your home's curb appeal at the same time.

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 Manassas siding repair or replacement service. You may also be wondering what the heck soffits and fascia boards are, which is understandable!

This guide from the siding repair experts on your local Manassas handyman team 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 fascia boards are crying out for repairs.

What Are the Types of Siding Used in Manassas, VA?

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 choices for new siding in Manassas 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 Manassas 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 signs that you need repairs.

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. The problem is heat transfer. As thermal energy attempts to move from a warmer place to a colder place, it compromises the efforts of your HVAC system to keep your house at the temperature you have set on your thermostat. When a damaged exterior is allowing for increased heat transfer, your HVAC system has to operate for longer and longer periods of time in compensation.

Your heating and cooling costs are probably the biggest expenses on your monthly utility bill—that's the case for most homes, because your air conditioner and furnace need to use a lot of fuel. When your HVAC system's operation time is increased, it makes a significant impact on your bank account via rising energy costs. An energy-efficient, insulated vinyl replacement can drastically lower your utility costs and increase energy efficiency by improving your siding's ability to prevent heat transfer through your walls.

Cracks or Gaps

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

When water leaks inside your walls, it flattens insulation and compromises your building's energy efficiency. The moisture can cause wood rot which will eat away at wooden structural elements and can cause parts of the structure to collapse if left alone to worsen and spread. Gaps and cracks 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. Pest infestations make your house a lot less sanitary and comfortable for you, and destructive species can cause a huge amount of damage in a short time.

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.

Anyone who has had to deal with the time-consuming, stressful hassle of water damage mitigation will tell you it's best to catch the problem as early as possible. If you notice signs that moisture is underneath your cladding, it's important to get Manassas siding repair service as soon as possible. The ruined panels will need to be replaced, and the moisture barrier underneath may need repair or replacement as well.

Rotting Wood

Wood siding isn't as common these days, but it's still a classic option with lots of natural charm. Wood has low thermal conductivity, so it's also a good choice if you want something that's energy efficient. But it can't be considered low maintenance because any wood that is frequently exposed to moisture from rain or snow is vulnerable to the dreaded wood rot. Since this type of decay only happens in timber that has a high moisture content, any wood that is outside needs regular maintenance to avoid rot.

Once rot has begun to spread, there's no way to reverse the damage. The best Manassas siding repair strategy is to stop rot in its tracks by removing and replacing affected boards or shingles early on, then painting or staining them and adding a layer of sealant.

If your rain gutters are overflowing or broken, it significantly increases the chances of moisture damage problems like wood rot on your home's exterior. Your local handyman can help with gutter services to keep them clean and in good shape so they can protect your house. Need additional information? Learn more about why it's important to complete gutter cleaning.

Interior Moisture Damage

Speaking of water damage, have you noticed any signs of it inside your home? Once water finds a pathway into your house, it just keeps relentlessly making its way through anything it encounters, including your interior walls, ceilings and floors. Needless to say, that's a huge problem. All that water had to come from somewhere, and it's possible the source is something like a leaky roof or hidden plumbing leak. But if those aren't the problem, your cladding is a likely suspect. Regardless of what is causing it, a water leak needs to be stopped immediately.

Here are some of the signs of interior moisture damage:

  • Brownish water stains on the wall or ceiling

  • Patches of softened, crumbling drywall on walls or ceilings

  • Loose joint tape or popping nails and screws in drywall

  • Excess condensation on interior window panes

  • Leaking water coming from window frames and door jambs

  • Drafts of cold air coming from walls, electrical outlets or switches

  • Walls feel cold to the touch in one or a few specific areas

These problems will only get worse over time, so it's important to call a Manassas siding repair professional right away if you have signs of interior moisture damage that you suspect are being caused by damaged cladding.

Vinyl is Faded

Vinyl is among the most popular choices for homeowners and builders alike, for good reason. It's durable, low maintenance and water resistant. It also comes in a really wide range of colors and styles, so it's possible to find an option that really shows off your personal sense of taste and complements your property. But vinyl does have a weakness—it's prone to fading, especially parts that are often exposed to direct sunlight. That’s why manufacturers now create modern vinyl siding products with UV inhibitors that block harmful UV rays and keep cladding color-fast for a long time.

When it does eventually fade, it's a sign that it is aging and will start to experience more trouble until it is eventually replaced. It's possible to counter the fading problem with exterior painting services, but if the vinyl is quite old, replacing it right away will be more cost-effective than Manassas siding repair.

Can Manassas Siding Repair or Replacement Increase Property Value?

If you're thinking of putting your house on the real estate market in the near future and looking for ways to raise the value of your property, Manassas siding repair or replacement services are a great option. Our skilled handyman team can improve the protective qualities and energy efficiency of your home's exterior, but we can also get it looking as good as the day it was installed.

Cladding is one of the first things realtors and prospective home buyers will notice when they come to view your house. If it's in great condition, they'll be reassured that the home isn't suffering from major issues with heat transfer and that the rest of the property has been carefully maintained as well. But if it's looking rough with signs of serious problems like cracks, missing pieces and warped panels, it will start alarm bells ringing in their heads before they even get in the door. Manassas siding repair is well worth it to get a return on investment in the selling price.

What Are Soffits and Fascia Boards?

While you know what siding is and all the common repairs in Manassas, 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 and 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 fascia boards 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 require Manassas siding repair for issues caused by 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 roofing, the water spills out and pours down the fascia and across the soffits instead, causing moisture damage. Your qualified Manassas 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?

Manassas siding repair services for 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 should be repaired:

  • 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

A damaged fascia board along the roofline of a home, and the new section installed to repair the damage.

Mr. Handyman is Your Manassas Siding Repair Expert!

If you're in need of Manassas siding repair, siding installation or repairs for your soffits or fascia, 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.

Whether you're in Manassas, VA, or nearby service areas in Northern VA, such as Sudley, County Center and Gainesville, you can count on our trusted handyman team for the highest quality of workmanship, for everything from cladding repair to door installation. Give us a call today to find out more about how we can improve your home with reliable handyman services and make your life easier!