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Rotting Soffits

I have a question about rotting wood soffits. Our house was built in 1968 and is a mid-century modern custom home. It has about 3.5' overhangs on most of the house where the soffits are wood. We want to have vinyl soffits installed and I am curious how this would work. Would they just install the vinyl soffits OVER the wood? I am attaching a link to photos of our house (taken for landscaping purposes, but will suffice for this as well).


A. Spruce
Re: Rotting Soffits

Damage should always be repaired, never covered up. "Dry" rot is a bit of a misnomer, as all rot requires the presence of moisture, typically from a leak, in this case, likely a leaking roof or gutter. Fix the problem, replace the damage, then install your vinyl soffits.

MLB Construction
Re: Rotting Soffits

agreed 100%.......

Re: Rotting Soffits

You could just cover the soffits with vinyl but I think your problems will continue to get worse, you just won't see it any more.

Looking at the photos, it appears that the problem starts with the gutters. The gutters are attached to a fascia board and it looks like this board is rotting, particularly in the corners. I suspect that the gutters overflow at the corners for some reason. You may not have enough downspouts or the gutters aren't big enough or they weren't installed correctly.

Most gutters that I have seen installed, the installer removes the filler strip between the fascia and the roof deck, leaving a gap. On top of that, they don't paint the wood that gets exposed. If water overflows, it can get into the soffit cavity. It also rots the fascia board.

I think you are going to have to remove the gutters. Replace the fascia board and make sure it goes all the way to the roof deck boards. Paint it with three coats of the best house paint you can get before putting the gutters back on. You might want to invest in cellular PVC boards instead of wood.

If you reuse the gutters, make sure that they are the right size and have enough downspouts.

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