Image from Wikipedia
Homeowners value their houses so much that they’ll do what they can to keep these in good condition, hoping these will last for years. Doing so not only preserves the aesthetics of the house but also its structural integrity.
One way of going about this is by planning the maintenance activities as eavestrough cleaning, siding repair, replacement of damaged window screens, deck/patio repair, fixing plumbing for leaks, etc. — so that early actions can be taken before bigger problems arise, which will not only be a hassle but will cost much to repair when the degree of damage has become worse.
You will be able to better plan the repair and maintenance activities if you understand the different components of your house, their uses and the common problems encountered for these. Right now, let’s focus on one topic – about the soffits on your house, what they are, why they are important, how to take care of these, and lots more.
So first, what is a soffit? Let’s get the help of Wikipedia for the official definition: It says that “soffit most often refers to the material forming a ceiling from the top of an exterior house wall to the outer edge of the roof, i.e., bridging the gap between a home’s siding and the roofline, otherwise known as the eaves.” It’s also mentioned in Wikipedia, which may make this a bit clearer: “Examples of soffits include: the exposed undersurface of any exterior overhanging section of a roof eave.”
Now let’s tackle why soffits are important. If the idea of a soffit is still not clear to you, then let’s expound a bit more. Simply put, a soffit is the underside of your house’s eaves. If you check this where you live, you’ll have to go outside your house and check the underside of the overhanging section of your home’s eaves where vents are usually inserted, which allow fresh outside air to flow into the attic. The importance therefore of soffits is the ability to make your house cooler with the air coming in, allowing for better circulation. During colder times, soffits will prevent moisture from forming that may damage the interior of the home. With all this, you may be starting to appreciate the value that soffits bring to your home. So never take them for granted, and they deserve every bit of attention and care for proper house maintenance.
At this point, you may be wondering: “how do we take care of soffits?” Now this is the most interesting part. So let’s dive right in. Now, you need to regularly check every soffit as this plays an extremely important part to the health of your roof. One thing to inspect is the vents in your soffit. Check that these are not blocked in any way. If needed, you’ll have to clear them from obstructions. Then you’ll have to check for rot, making sure it has not started setting into the beams that are made of wood – you definitely don’t want that. Next, check the soffit for damage caused by bad weather conditions – causing dampness and rot as well, which possibly lead to structural issues if they’re left to get worse. Lastly, you may also want to check the aesthetics of your soffit. Though it’s not a functional issue but it can also cause minor structural issues with the peeling of the paint and flaking – so might as well keep an eye out on this as well.
This is important to take note that simple regular cleaning of soffits can prevent many of the above problems. While you may probably just want to just leave these on their own, don’t! You’ll eventually regret that, and it will cost you more in the end. Don’t make the mistake of overlooking the importance of these hard-to-reach parts of your house. Yes, they are high up there but they serve an important purpose. So keep the discipline in doing the hard work like gutter cleaning, fascia panels and soffit boards cleaning – these are maintenance activities a homeowner should not be neglecting. The health of your roof is just as important as any other part of your house. So the next time around, appreciate the value these soffits and fascias provide to your home – and learn to give them love by taking good care of them so they’ll continue to work hard in protecting your home from the elements.