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Soffit Repair

Table of contents

  1. Types of Soffit Damage
  2. Soffit Repair
  3. Hardie Boys Soffit
  4. Tools Required to Repair Soffit
  5. Conclusion

External soffits can become damaged due to a range of issues. In most cases, extreme weather conditions are the main cause of damage, though animals, bugs, and moisture build-ups are also potential factors. Any bird or squirrel nests inside eaves are also an indication that damage may have happened.

When a soffit is broken, your home no longer benefits from having complete external protection. If the damage is left unprepared, the risk of rotting or mold occurring is increased. Should your soffit suffer from water damage, it is likely to attract bees and hornets. Therefore, it is essential that a damaged soffit is identified and repaired quickly.

While there are filters and covers available to limit the need for soffit or gutter repairs, when the damage is extensive, the soffit will need to be replaced with a new soffit installed.

This blog post covers all you need to know about inspecting your soffit boards and eaves for damage, as well as how you can repair and install a soffit yourself!

Types of Soffit Damage

There are several ways that you tell if your soffit is damaged or rotting and in need to repair. The following are different types of soffit damage that can occur in both external and internal soffit locations.

Cracked and/or Curled Soffit

Cracks can lead to leaking, and they may be a sign of a weak or rotted soffit. A curled soffit may be due to water damage and, therefore, require repairing.

Large Holes

Holes may be due to rotten wood, animals, or bad weather. It is best to begin your soffit repair as soon as you see a large hole to minimize further damage.

Missing Wood

Missing wood will require immediate repair to protect the house and other essential materials within the soffit design.

Termite damage is accelerated by wet or damaged wood

After a bout of bad weather, look over your roof boards, around each rafter tail, and under the soffit boards to look out for any damage caused by termites. Signs to look out for include peeling paint and small dents in any wood or drywall.

Water Intrusion Around Fascia

You should regularly check your gutters, fascia, and soffit to make sure they are in good shape with no leaks. Excess amounts of water will cost a lot more if left untreated and can also produce rot, so regular maintenance is key.

Mold, Fungus, and Algae

These are signs of excess moisture that could be due to poor ventilation or water damage.

Animals Sneaking in the Attic

If you notice signs that animals have been sneaking into your attic, it is highly likely that you have a hole in either your fascia board or your soffit boards.

Hollow Soffit Wood

Any wood that sounds hollow when tapped could be evidence of termites.

Soffit Repair

Given below are step-by-step instructions on how to repair and install a new soffit.

Pry off shingle mold

If there is mold present, use a flat pry bar to gently remove it.

Remove fascia

Next, use the flat pry bar again to remove the fascia. To avoid waste, if your fascia board is still ok and is intact after removal, you can reuse it upon reinstallation.

Inspect eave

Look for any animal or bug nests and safely remove them.

Remove soffit’s damaged rotting wood

Use your hands to remove any damaged or rotting wood. We recommend wearing gloves for health and safety reasons. Be wary of any nesting animals or bugs that may have made a home in your soffit.

Remove rotted rafter

If any of the rafters have rotted, remove the damaged pieces using a reciprocating saw. Use your tape measure to identify the length of the removed rotted rafter and cut out a replacement piece from pressure-treated lumber using the exact measurements.

Attach cleat

If this roof soffit repair is happening on an overhang near a brick chimney, attach a cleat to offer greater support. You can use a nailer to attach this cleat – a 2×4 should do the trick.

Install new rafter

Using the clamps, attach a 1-inch backboard and screw the new rafter tails into place against it. Use the drill to do this. If using a brick chimney, screw the rafter into this too.

Prepare new soffit (seal replacement soffit)

You will want to seal your new replacement soffit using a waxy sealant to further protect your house against weather damage. Make sure to prime the top, bottom, and sides.

You should also look to seal any holes or cracks on the underside of the eave before you attach the new soffit.

Attach new soffit

Use the drill to screw in the soffit to the underside of the eave.

Attach new replacement fascia

Next, attach the new replacement fascia board using the nailer. We recommend using galvanized nails for this process.

Install shingle mold on top of new fascia

Using a tape measure, install the shingle mold across the top of the new fascia board. The tape measure will ensure a uniform and straight attachment.

Hardie Boys Soffit

Hardie Boys produces HB PVC soffit panels with 20% minimal waste! Every sheet is 100% usable with 5 times longer paint retention, reducing the need to repaint as often as required by wood. Our soffits are low maintenance with superior paint adhesion and a straightforward installation process for a speedier repair!

Tools Required to Replace Soffit

You will need the following tools, or a similar alternative, to successfully replace a soffit:

Flat Pry Bar

A flat bar will be needed to pry off any mold and take off the fascia.

Reciprocating Saw

A reciprocating saw will help to remove any rotted rafter tails while maintaining a straight cut line. If you do not have a reciprocating saw, a circular saw will work as a replacement so long as it is handled carefully and a straight line cut can be made.

Nailer

A nailer with galvanized nails is needed to attach the fascia boards.

Drill/Driver

Alongside screws, a drill is required for reinstalling the new soffit into place.

Clamps

Clamps will make the soffit installation a lot easier, especially if you are repairing it by yourself.

Tape Measure

A tape measure will ensure that all attachments are straight for a great, consistent finish.

Conclusion

In summary, many homeowners can carry out soffit repairs effectively and easily so long as the damage is caught quickly. Hardie Boys provides low maintence soffit systems that can be installed with minimal time and effort required. Our soffit systems are available in a range of designs and sizes to suit any house.