A lot goes into building a house, and even more is required to make that place a home. Once you have moved in and made that space comfortable, you are going to want to keep your home as safe as possible from the elements, pests, and other risks. Knowing the protective measures on the exterior of your house, including the gutters, roofing, and other components like fascia and the purpose of these things is important. If you don’t understand the function, how can you maintain your home?
WHAT IS FASCIA?
Fascia comes from the Latin word meaning a “band or strip of material.” The fascia used in architecture is a bit like the fascia that wraps around your muscles, forming a protective sheath. However, fascia around your house is more or less a horizontal board that covers the exposed trusses or roof rafters at the point where the walls meet the rooftop.
Many homeowners do not realize that fascia even exists on their home, because it is often covered up by gutters.
FASCIA IS NOT SOFFIT.
New homeowners often get confused when they hear their roofing contractor throwing around jargon like “soffit” and “fascia,” and some even end up thinking these roofing elements are the same exact thing. While soffit and fascia are indeed related, they each have their own role to play. Soffits are the exposed siding beneath the overhang of your roof. Soffit is usually made of vinyl or aluminum, but wooden soffit is also available.
Now, you cannot have a safe household without soffit and fascia working together seamlessly. Soffit helps maintain the airflow between the roof and the attic. It is key in hindering mold growth. Soffit also prevents vermin and insects out of your house.
THE PURPOSE OF FASCIA BOARDS
What is so important about this longboard around your house? Think back to the muscle fascia example and how it protects. The fascia is the final row of support for the lowest part of the roof shingles or tiles. Aside from that fascia serves the following purposes:
- Anchors gutters in place;
• Keeps water from leaking into the roof deck and getting into the internal system;
• Enhances curbside appeal by covering the rough ends of the rafters;
• Stops unwanted access to squirrels, birds, and other destructive insects that could get into the attic.
Since gutters are highly important, you should consider fascia to be essential too.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF FASCIA
Fascia are generally constructed of four materials: wood, vinyl (PVC), UPVC and aluminum. Here are some of the features of each of those materials:
- Common choice because of affordability
• Uses spruce, fir, or pine wood
• Not water resistant and often subject to rot and mold
• Must be primed and painted continuously for longevity
- Also known as Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
• Includes plasticizers for additional flexibility
• Used alongside wooden fascia to increase lifespan and add curbside appeal
• Water, insect, and rot resistant
- Can be used alone or as a means to weatherproof wooden fascia
• Can be bent or wrapped around the pieces of wood fascia
• Installation can be expensive
• Extends life of wood elements
UNPLASTICIZED VINYL FASCIA (UPVC)
- Rigid and durable because it does not contain plasticizers
• Enhances curbside appeal
• Requires only minimal maintenance
• Excellent water flow
• Chemical and water resistant
- Made of recycled wood chips, sawdust, plastic, and epoxy resin
• Comes in a variety of colors and looks like wood
• Extremely durable and resistant to water, insects, rot, and other dangers
• Not yet widely used on the market
For many years, wood fascia was the go-to option for homeowners and contractors. However, because of the high maintenance level, its popularity is decreasing. With the introduction of vinyl, composites, and other options, upgrading your home from wood fascia to something else is easier than ever. Vinyl fascia and cladding pairs well together, for example. Whether you decide to use vinyl fascia board or another material, you get benefits like extended lifespan, minimal maintenance, better resistance to damage and inclement weather, and better visual appeal.