What Are Soffits And Fascias?

When you think about a roof on a house, you might just picture tiles, guttering and perhaps a skylight. But there are other smaller elements that often get overlooked, yet without them, the finished product wouldn’t look as nice and, more importantly, wouldn’t be structurally secure. 

Two roofing elements that you might not have heard of are soffits and fascias, so we’ll explain more about them and show you how they add the finishing touch to your roof. 

What are soffits and fascias? 

Put simply, soffits and fascias give your roofline an attractive, clean-edged finish. This diagram shows you where they are located. 

What is a soffit? 

‘Soffit’ is a French word which means the visible underside of an arch, balcony, beam, cornice, roof,  staircase, vault or any other architectural element. As mentioned in the definition, they aren’t just found under a roof. 

Soffits can be made from a variety of materials, including uPVC, wood, steel and cement. However, we would always recommend uPVC due to its durability, as it won’t rot, warp or need repainting. uPVC is water resistant so it’s ideal for high moisture areas like the UK. And of course, it’s much easier to clean than wood. 

What does a soffit do? 

Soffits have a triple purpose in life – making the roof more aesthetically pleasing, protecting rafters from the elements and allowing air to circulate around the house. Without a soffit, the rafters could rot which can lead to mould in your home, which can be detrimental to your health and be quite expensive to remove. Vents in soffits help air to circulate whilst preventing moisture from getting in and leading to issues with condensation and damp. 

What is a fascia?

A fascia, or fascia board is a long, straight board running along the lower edge of a roof. 

Fascias were traditionally made from primed and painted wood, but although maintenance will prolong their durability, they eventually need to be replaced. A great alternative is uPVC, which is extremely durable, weather-resistant, easy to clean and available in a variety of colours and designs. 

What does a fascia do?

You’ll find a fascia fixed directly to the lower ends of the roof trusses (a structural framework of timber), working hard to support the lower edge of the bottom row of roof tiles or other roofing material. Fascias also carry out a vital role in supporting the guttering – a much-needed job in a heavy downpour! 

Similarly to soffits, fascias improve the look of your roof and also protect the inside of your home from weathering damage.

Why choose our soffits and fascias?

Our PVC soffits are available in a choice of standard utility boards, vented Eurosoffit boards or lightweight hollow soffit boards. They are manufactured in a variety of widths and are fully compatible with our fascia systems and give an exact colour match. Our soffit board colourways include white, grey, Irish oak, golden oak and rosewood, but we do have additional colours available. 

There are two styles of our low-maintenance uPVC fascias in various widths. At 18mm thick, they are sturdy enough to attach directly to your rafters (keeping costs down) and no painting is required. Our fascias complement our range of soffits and also all other brands. 

Don’t worry if this is all a little technical – please just get in touch and we will be happy to help! Since 1978, we have supplied and fitted quality windows, doors, conservatories, soffits and fascias and our 10-year guarantee on all products that we manufacture and install gives you complete peace of mind. 

How do I tell if my soffits and fascias need replacing?

As mentioned, uPVC is the ideal choice for soffits and fascias. However, if you have wooden versions, these are signs that they might need replacing: 

  • Soft patches in wood and signs of rot and holes
  • Cracked and flaking paint
  • Evidence of animals and rodents
  • Asbestos used in existing fascia and soffits
  • Water in the roof void – this means something is leaking
  • Condensation (always a concern) 
  • Lack of ventilation

The next step towards replacing or choosing soffits and fascias

We hope you’ve found this guide to soffits and fascias useful. Please get in touch to speak to our team if you have any questions or would like a no-obligation quote for your project. 

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