Rotted Fascia and Soffit Repair
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Rotted fascias and soffits are a relatively common problem for homeowners. Granted, you probably won’t encounter this problem more than a couple of times in your life (unless you are very unlucky when buying new property), but given how many properties are well over a few decades old, you’re bound to encounter them at some point. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves; what are fascias and soffits?
What are Fascias?
This is essentially a long, straight board that can be found running along the lower edge of your roof, where the roof and your outer walls meet. This board typically supports the lowest row of tiles around your roof, not to mention all the guttering. With a name like “fascia”, this board tends to be unfairly assumed to be something purely cosmetic—something to make the junction between roof and wall look a little neater.
It does serve this purpose, of course, but it is no mere cosmetic addition.
Holding some of the weight of a row of tiles is no small feat in and of itself, but holding the weight of all of your property’s guttering during a heavy downpour requires a lot of strength. And the larger the surface area of the roof, the more weight that guttering will be carrying during a spell of rain.
What are Soffits?
The positioning of the fascia board typically has it stood off from the walls of the house by a little way. Without soffits, you would have a less than appealing view from the ground, straight up into the cavity behind the fascia board. Which is unfortunate because from the ground is typically where you will be looking from.
Soffits bridge that gap between the fascia board and the walls, tidying everything up a little and making it more aesthetically pleasing from the ground. Soffits may be ventilated to allow airflow into the roof cavity, though it is more common to provide that airflow over the top of the fascia board.
What Makes Fascias and Soffits Rot?
The most basic answer to this question is that fascias and soffits are often made out of wood, and wood that is exposed to the elements will always rot eventually, it is just a matter of how much time it takes. That being said, the architectural design of your property and the treatment on the wood should prevent it from rotting prematurely, and ensure you get quite a bit of life out of it.
So why would they rot prematurely? Well the easiest answer is improper installation. Perhaps the wood was not properly treated and painted, or perhaps things were just not installed properly. Regardless of which it is, if water is allowed to come into contact with the raw, unprotected wood, or it is allowed to get to places where it should, such as behind the fascia board, it can cause the fascia and soffits to begin to rot over time.
Incorrectly installed fascias may be the simplest cause of rotting, but what if you’ve had your current fascias for years and never had a problem? It could just be a factor of time, but it could also be a change elsewhere.
Being attached to your fascia and responsible for transporting large quantities of water away from your property, your gutters would be the most likely candidate in this situation. Your gutters could have become damaged from an impact or strong weather, or they could be clogged up, with the clog causing water to spill over the sides rather than disappear down the drain where it’s supposed to go.
While your fascia and soffits are not designed to retain water, and any water that gets in should drain back out, the constant exposure to excessive moisture will still be enough to make your fascia board and soffits begin to rot.
Damage to Fascia or Soffits
If your fascia or soffits have somehow become damaged, perhaps from a falling tree branch or an accident involving a ladder, this can also provide a way for water to get in behind the fascia and start causing rot.
At least in this case you should be able to spot the problem from the ground, since any damage significant enough to allow water through should leave a visible scar, not to mention you could have witnessed the incident that caused the damage in the first place! Call a professional roofer today.
Do All Fascias and Soffits Rot?
Not all fascias and soffits are made of wood, and rot is primarily a wood thing. Some are made using metals like aluminium, while others may use uPVC. In the case of uPVC, rotting and corrosion should never be a problem. At least, not on the timescales of the average length of time people own a home.
In the case of metal options, corrosion is more of a possibility, especially if the fascia has suffered a lot of damage. But again, this would likely not occur particularly quickly.
So Why Use Wood?
If wood is so prone to rotting compared to the alternatives, why use it? Firstly, it is quite inexpensive. Secondly, it looks nice. And finally, it is flexible. Not flexible in the bendy sense, of course, but flexible in that you can easily cut and shape wood to suit the design of your property. This is possible to some degree with uPVC fascias and soffits, but not nearly as much.
Can Rot be Prevented?
To some degree, rot will nearly always find a way through over a long enough period of time. It is simply not realistic to expect to be able to track down every imperfection or problem spot in your soffits and fascia over the life of your property, especially when half of the surface of the wood is hidden.
That being said, you can greatly reduce the opportunity that rot has to take hold by ensuring that your fascia and soffits are properly installed, that they are treated and/or painted thoroughly, and that any damage to them is dealt with quickly and professionally.
Should a Rotted Fascia or Soffit be Replaced?
Of course, the answer is an unequivocal yes. As we have outlined above, the fascia board is actually responsible for a lot of heavy lifting. Rotting significantly weakens the materials that are doing that heavy lifting, and if left alone, it will eventually reach a point where it is no longer strong enough to hold everything up.
The unfortunate thing about this potential situation is that it is unlikely to be a gradual collapse, but a sudden one. You will be able to see the rot before it has got too bad, of course, but any actual breaking will likely occur suddenly when the fascia is under added strain, like during rainfall. That means that, if the rot were to get so bad that the guttering could break away from the house, it would do so suddenly and come down with the weight of all that water on top of it.
Of course, we’re not suggesting that having empty guttering fall on your head is much better, but when you consider how much water your gutter could theoretically hold and how heavy water is, it could be the difference between a trip to the hospital and a trip to the morgue if you happen to be stood underneath it when it goes.
And, of course, rot is unsightly, and no one wants their home to look like it’s falling apart.
What is the Cost of Fascia Repair and Replacement?
As you might expect, the cost of repairing or replacing your fascia and soffits will largely depend on the size of your property and the materials you choose for your new fascia. As a rough guide, new uPVC fascia and soffits on a small semi-detached property will come to around £1,500, with a larger property being around double that amount. If you have an unusually shaped property, or an extremely large one, you can use the guide of £100 per metre of roofline as an indicator for how much you might be looking at. The same price would apply to your soffits, so if you need fascia and soffits, you would be looking at a rough guide price of £200 per metre of roofline.
There are many reasons to choose wooden fascia boards and soffits over the alternatives, not least of which is the initial costs of the materials. Unfortunately that lower price comes with a cost of a different kind, and one that needs to be taken seriously.
You will need to do what you reasonably can to prevent rot from getting a foothold on your fascia, as well as acting quickly if rot does take hold. Rotten fascias are not just unsightly, they are dangerous. And ignoring for a moment the potential risk to yourself and those who visit the property, there is also the possibility that your rotten fascia board and soffits could do more property damage on their way out, such as a falling gutter breaking a window on its way past.
Get a quote from an expert today!
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How to Repair a Rotted Soffit
By Taylor-Made Roofing
Your whole roof will undergo some wear and tear over time, but—between erratic weather and pesky animals—a soffit is usually the first part of the roof to bear damage. When you notice your soffit beginning to mold or rot, it’s important to take care of it as quickly as possible in order to avoid further damage to your home. If your roof has this problem, read below to learn how to repair a rotted soffit in less than ten simple steps.
Before we start, how will you know your soffit is rotting? You may notice that . . .
- The soffit looks cracked and curls under the roof’s eaves,
- Some wood is completely missing from the soffit,
- There is water intrusion in your attic around the fascia,
- Animals have been sneaking into your attic, or
- When you tap on the soffit’s wood, it sounds hollow.
Now, the repair. The good news is that you won’t even need to climb on top of your roof to fix your soffit!
1. Pry off your shingle mold. Simply remove with a flat bar.
2. Remove the fascia. Use your flat bar again here. You can reuse your fascia if it remains in tact while you remove it. If it splinters, cut a new piece of wood (same thickness and measurements as the original fascia) and prime it on both sides. Let it dry while you work.
3. Remove the soffit’s rotting wood. You’ll likely just need to use your hands to pull it off. If you know (or just suspect) that an animal’s nest is the cause behind the rotting, be wary of that when you remove the wood. Cut a new piece of plywood for the new soffit.
4. Take out the rotted rafter (when applicable). You can use a reciprocating saw to do this. Cut out a piece pressure-treated lumber with the original rafter’s measurements.
5. Install the new rafter (when applicable). Clamp the new wood to a 1-inch backboard, and use a screw to install.
6. Prepare the new soffit. Using a waxy sealant, coat both sides and all edges of the new wood. This will help protect it from water damage.
7. Attach the soffit. Install to the underside of the eave using a screw. Look for any places water may seep through, and caulk those areas (and let dry!) before moving on.
8. Attach the fascia. Use galvanized nails.
9. Install the shingle mold along the top of the new fascia.
That’s it—you’re finished! Keep an eye out for rotting soffits before they become a problem. Remember that the two biggest culprits are weather changes and animals’ nests in the space behind the soffit. Of course you can’t help the weather, but you can keep up with regular maintenance and watch for animals nesting.
Repairing a soffit can be tough. Sometimes you just want someone else to do it for you. If you live in southern Missouri, contact the professionals at Taylor-Made Roofing. With over 20 years of experience in residential and commercial roofing, Taylor-Made Roofing is a company that you can trust with all of your roofing and guttering needs. Our family-owned business offers quality services, a reassuring warranty, and free estimates. For more information, please give us a call at 417-326-8778 or contact us online. We look forward to hearing from you!
Filed Under: Soffits
How to fix a hole in a plastic window sill: do-it-yourself repair
Cracks appear under the window from flower vases, the color fades from direct sunlight, the top layer is damaged during cleaning and washing the glass with chemicals. For each of these cases, there is a way to restore the window sill. Consider how to repair a plastic window sill.
Repair of PVC window sills
Window structures are made of plastic. Some models are made of more durable, others are made of thin, fragile. Plastic surfaces are easy to care for, dirt does not clog on smooth surfaces, dust does not accumulate, fungal organisms that provoke mold rarely start on their surface.
Over time, acrylic window sills begin to scratch, stains, chips, cracks appear on them, which completely spoil the look. Due to a couple of scratches, it is impractical to change the entire window structure. Minor repairs can be made to fix deficiencies.
There are ways to repair a plastic window sill with your own hands, without the help of a master.
How to fix a hole in a plastic window sill
Liquid acrylic is a product from a new generation of paints and varnishes. Available in two types – glue and paint. The first is used to eliminate chips and scratches, and the second is used to give a solid color and shine.
Liquid plastic for PVC surfaces is widely used in industry and at home. He will remove scratches from plastic, eliminate flaws, mask small chips. Even deep holes in window sills can be covered with liquid acrylic.
The material is sold ready-made in jars or tubes, from which it is easy to apply directly to the repaired surface. Before applying liquid plastic, it is necessary to clean the structure of all contaminants and wipe the entire surface with finely abrasive sandpaper. This will create a slight roughness, which increases adhesion – the adhesion of the liquid material to the plastic.
Liquid plastic is applied to all scratches and chips in a small amount, carefully spread evenly over the scratch. When the material is completely dry, the surface can be sanded to return to its original appearance and become one smooth and shiny. If the window sill is in a terrible state, it is better to stick a laminated film on top of the plastic, which will give an aesthetic look.
How to repair a plastic window sill: without dismantling
There are 5 ways to repair a plastic window sill with your own hands. The first most common is gluing a laminated film, which will hide flaws and renew the surface. The second way is to cover up with a special putty that fills cracks and eliminates chips.
You can also use glue, special pads, chemicals for bleaching, cleaning PVC surfaces. It is definitely impossible to say what is the best way to renew an old plastic window sill, because the restoration method depends on the intensity of the damage.
If the window sill is too damaged, it is better to remove it, repair it, and then reinstall it. If there are scratches on it, then you can repair the plastic window sill without dismantling it.
Liquid plastic is used for small flaws. If the damage is deep and large in diameter, it is better to use repair patches or overlays. They are made from pure PVC and are highly durable.
Visually, they are similar to the top layer of the window sill, to install them you need to perform the following steps:
- First, the window sill is cleaned of dust, if necessary, coated with a primer.
- Glue, putty, or liquid acrylic should be used to repair all defects. To evenly distribute the liquid material, you can use a rubber spatula.
- Trim cut to fit the entire window sill.
- Degrease the inside of the cover and apply a thin layer of adhesive to it.
- After that, it is placed on the window sill. Gently, evenly on its surface, you need to distribute the load so that the patch is completely dry (you can use 2-3 flowerpots, approximately the same weight). If the glue comes out at the edges, it must be removed immediately before it hardens.
- When the glue dries, don’t forget to put the end caps on the sides (they are sold with a cover plate).
The advantage of this method is its simplicity, accessibility, aesthetics. The overlay can be installed by every owner and even the hostess. There is a wide range of colors and textures on sale. You can choose a window sill in a color that will be in harmony with the style of the room. Although the pad is thin, it eliminates all bumps, scratches, chips, dirt that cannot be cleaned.
Many people don’t know how to patch a hole in a window sill. Especially for this, a highly durable putty with a plastic effect was invented, which can be bought at every hardware store. This mixture is sold in the form of a powder, the instructions for which indicate in what proportions it must be diluted with water in order to restore a plastic window sill.
The peculiarity of this material is that after drying it completely imitates the plastic surface, it becomes just as smooth and hard. When diluted, it acquires such a consistency as cement, putty, gypsum. It is applied in the same way as mastic, with a spatula. To improve adhesion, the window sill must first be degreased with alcohol and treated with a primer.
Immediately after preparation, the composition is applied to the surface, carefully leveled and left for 20-40 minutes to harden. After that, it is processed with sandpaper to smooth out all the roughness and bumps. For a glossy sheen, the surface is polished with a PVC polish from above.
Plastic window sills often have cracks, abrasions, yellow or dark spots. Plastic surfaces are covered with a thin, invisible decorative film that adds shine to the product. It protects it from mechanical damage. All the flaws that appear on the surface first spoil the film, and it can be restored.
To do this, there are a number of chemical cleaners used for plastic, acrylic, plastic surfaces:
- Solvents will remove yellowness, black spots, minor abrasions that are striking due to the fact that dirt has eaten deep into them. The work is carried out with gloves and a face mask so as not to be poisoned by toxins that evaporate the solvent. Immediately you need to open the windows for safety reasons and ventilate the room.
- For more caustic dirt, abrasive cleaners can be used, but it is important to remember that they can damage the top film. This method is suitable for too dirty plastic window sills, which are planned to be covered with film or liquid acrylic on top.
Laminated film (self-adhesive)
Polyvinyl chloride laminated film is one of the most popular options for restoration of window sills, window structures, doors, furniture. It has a sticky side, and does not require special skills for its installation.
It is sufficient to clean the surface and apply the foil carefully so that air bubbles do not form underneath. You can use the film on any surface when there are many minor defects on them. PVC film will get rid of scratches, but will not be able to restore a plastic window sill if a hole is punched in it.
One of the advantages of this material is a wide range of textures and colors. Films are monophonic and printed under a tree marble, a stone, a list, a laminate.
The film should be glued according to the following technology:
- If the plastic window sill is cracked or scratched, it must first be cleaned of dirt, because the film will not stick to dust or abrasive particles.
- After that, putty mixture is applied in a thin layer to eliminate the flaws, and they were not visible under the film.
- When the mastic is dry, rub the surface with fine abrasive paper to remove all irregularities.
- Then cut the foil to the dimensions of the base, leaving a 2-3 cm allowance on each side.
- Start gluing from the edge. The adhesive-based protective coating must be removed carefully and gradually firmly pressing the film to the surface. To immediately remove air bubbles, you can use a silicone spatula or a bank card. It is not necessary to take a knife or a metal spatula for this purpose, because of the risk of damaging the surface of the film.
- If air bubbles still form, they need to be pierced with a needle and the area smoothed over.
- Remove film residue from all sides with a sharp utility knife and a thin metal ruler.
Advice: it is better to glue the film together, because it is difficult and there is a risk of spoiling everything. It is convenient when one person sticks the film, and the second at this time gradually removes the protective coating.
In the end, let’s briefly note what to do if the window sill in the kitchen or in the room has lost its appearance: restore it! Recovery can be done independently in several ways.
How to repair a plastic window sill with your own hands: video
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How to choose a window sill? – Apartment renovation in Moscow on a turnkey basis
External or external window sills must be highly durable and resistant to changing weather conditions.
The outer window sill is an important element of the facade, not only because of the protection of the walls of the building, but also for its aesthetic appearance. Most often, external window sills are made of aluminum, granite, PVC, ceramics, steel or wood.
Installation of external window sills
Not only the choice of the right type of external window sill, but also its professional installation significantly affect the appearance of the facade. In order for window sills to protect the facade from moisture and stains, several rules should be followed when installing them.
Particular attention should be paid to the slope of the outer window sill, which should be at least 5%, which will protect the window sill from rainwater. An equally important issue is to embed the window sill into the wall so that its outer edge protrudes from the wall by at least 5 cm. . Therefore, it is recommended to push the window sill under the frame.
Aluminum window sills
Durable, tough and weatherproof, aluminum exterior window sills come with a hefty price tag. However, their high quality speaks in their favor.
The surface of the powder-coated sheet is available in many colors, making it easy to adapt the window sills to the facade of the building. The use of powder coating also guarantees corrosion resistance and maintenance-free aluminum window sills.
The disadvantages of this solution include a high price and a clearly audible reflection of raindrops.
Granite exterior window sills
Exterior window sills made of granite fascinate with the appearance of natural stone. They are not only an attractive finish for the facade of the building, but also have high frost and fire resistance, as well as low water absorption.
Granite for exterior window sills can be honed, polished, hammered, matte or split, and it can also be of different colors.
However, this strong, durable and very luxurious material will come at a high price, so a conglomerate exterior window sill can be a good alternative. Made from ground natural stone and resins, it perfectly imitates granite, while maintaining its operational parameters. This is a cheaper solution without losing the hardness, strength and stability of the window sill.
PVC window sills
PVC outdoor window sills, made of foam or hard plastic and covered with a layer of laminate, are highly resistant to changing weather conditions. They are easy to handle and keep clean and muffle the sound of falling raindrops.
Plastic window sills are often used to finish PVC windows. Their big advantage is their low price and availability in many designs and colors. Finished veneer products can even imitate wood.
The disadvantage of PVC outdoor window sills compared to other materials is their low strength.
Ceramic window sills
Most often, external ceramic window sills are finished with clinker or porcelain stoneware. This solution provides great opportunities for choosing the shape, length, thickness and color of the window sill. Ceramic window sills, especially those lined with porcelain stoneware, are durable, resistant to changing weather conditions and mechanical damage, and are easy to keep clean. Their disadvantage is their heavy weight, which can cause installation problems.
Steel exterior window sills
Often choose steel exterior window sills, made of galvanized sheet metal and covered with decorative varnish. Their advantage is low price and availability in a wide range of colors and patterns, so they can be a good addition to both PVC and wooden windows.
The disadvantage of steel window sills is their low resistance to scratches and mechanical damage. However, it is worth knowing that a scratched layer of varnish can be restored.
Wooden outer window sills
Wooden exterior window sills are an aesthetic and up-to-date solution. They insulate the windows and facades of modern buildings and blend well with traditional houses finished with wood, brick or other natural materials. Exterior window sills can only be made from the hardest woods, such as oak or exotic woods. Wood must be reliably protected from moisture, mold, fungus and changing weather conditions.