You may not notice them on a daily basis, but soffits are essential to protect your home’s exterior. This is the material that covers the underside of your roof’s overhang, sometimes called the eaves or rafters. Soffit boards provide ventilation, keep out pests, and draw heat and moisture away from your home to prevent mold.
There’s no definite timetable for when to replace a soffit, but we’ve outlined some signs to look out for. Replacing a soffit can range from $6–$30 per linear foot but costs an average of $17 per linear foot.* That totals $4,250 for a typical one-story home requiring a job of 250 linear feet.
This guide breaks down what goes into the cost of soffit replacement and provides saving tips.
*Cost figure averaged from multiple sources.
Average Soffit Replacement Cost
Installation costs can vary widely based on the soffit type you choose. We’ll expand on the different types below.
Cost by Soffit Type
We’ve broken down average soffit material prices per linear foot in the table below. Some materials, such as wood, vinyl, and aluminum, require painting to prevent elemental damage or match your home. Painting adds $150–$300 to your material costs on average.
|Soffit Type||Average Cost per Linear Foot||Average Cost for One-story Home|
Aluminum is typically the most expensive soffit material at an average of $8–$20 per linear foot. It’s easy to install because it’s cut and bent easily. It’s also exceptionally durable and water-resistant. However, it can become chalky and fade in color over time. You’ll need to repaint it to maintain its appearance.
Composite soffits are made from a combination of wood and plastic materials. They’re rot-resistant and inexpensive, costing $1–$8 per linear foot. However, they’re difficult to install, increasing labor costs.
Soffits made of plastic, unplasticized polyvinyl chloride (UPVC), or polyvinyl chloride (PVC) cost an average of $3–$7 per linear foot. They don’t require painting, reducing your overall cost. Plastic is also one of the most durable materials to use for soffit replacements. You can customize these soffits with specialized paint.
Vinyl is low-maintenance and rot- and mold-resistant. It’s more durable than wood, but more expensive at an average of $5–$9 per linear foot. Vinyl can also crack in extremely hot or cold temperatures. You can paint vinyl soffits to match your home.
Wood is one of the cheapest soffit materials, costing $1–$3 per linear foot. It’s also one of the easiest to work with and install. However, it’s the most susceptible to the elements. Wood can chip, peel, and splinter over time and needs replacement more frequently. It’s recommended that you paint wood soffits for added protection against water damage and other external factors.
Factors Affecting Soffit Replacement Cost
The cost of a new soffit board is just one factor that affects your total replacement cost. Here are some other aspects you’ll need to consider.
Additional Roofing Repairs
Replacing the soffit may not be the only work your roof requires. If you don’t address other roof issues such as shingle replacement or structural repairs, you’ll likely see more damage soon. Include the cost of additional roof repair work when estimating your soffit replacement cost.
Labor for replacing a soffit board costs around $20 per linear foot for an experienced professional. Some contractors charge an additional fee—usually between 7% and 15% of the total cost—for work that’s difficult to access.
Consider the cost of maintaining your new soffit. Cheaper materials, such as wood or composite require more frequent cleaning and repair. More expensive materials cost more up-front, but you may spend less on them in the long run.
Removal of Old Soffit
Removing an old soffit that’s in good condition is a simple job. Removing a soffit with extensive rot is more labor-intensive and complex.
Professional vs. DIY
Replacing a soffit doesn’t require much skill, but it does require several pieces of equipment. It’s also a physically demanding task.
Professional Soffit Replacement
Having a professional replace your soffit is usually best if it’s within your budget. Labor costs $6–$20 per linear foot, plus additional fees if the soffit is hard to access or has other issues.
A professional will have all the necessary tools to complete the job. They should also fix their work if any issues arise from installation.
DIY Soffit Replacement
Though do-it-yourself (DIY) soffit replacement is low on the difficulty scale, you may find that it isn’t worth it given the tools and time required. We’ve provided a general overview of the steps to complete a DIY replacement for a vinyl soffit below.
Materials for Soffit Replacement
If you’ve decided to replace your soffits yourself, you’ll want to be prepared. Here’s a list of what you’ll need to install soffit boards:
- Box nails
- Circular saw, tin snips, hand saw, or utility knife (to cut soffit)
- Flat pry bar
- Tape measure
Soffit Replacement Steps
For homeowners who aren’t afraid of heights and would like to try soffit replacement on their own, follow these five steps.
- It’s difficult to replace the soffit without first removing the fascia boards. Remove the existing fascia with a pry bar and remove the nails that are holding it in place. Number each piece, so you remember how to reinstall them later.
- Remove the nails from the soffit and remove the old board.
- Cut your new soffit to match the lengths of the removed pieces. Soffit is sold in 12-foot pieces, so you’ll need to measure and cut to size. You can use a putty knife to cut your soffit along the length of the board. A hand saw or tin snips will work For smaller vertical cuts. A circular saw is also an option for cutting soffit boards.
- Secure your new soffit into the channel against your home. This could be an “F” channel or “J” channel, depending on your installation. Interlock the soffit into the channel and listen for a “click” to verify the board is locked in place. You can secure your soffit boards with box nails to ensure a snug fit.
- Reinstall your fascia boards.
The installation process will vary based on the soffit material. You may also need to paint and treat the soffit boards before installation. It’s also possible you’ll encounter unexpected issues, which professionals are better equipped to handle.
Signs You Need To Replace Your Soffit
Problems with your soffit can lead to problems with your roof, attic and other areas of your home. Catching these issues early will save you money and prevent damage to your home. Here are some signs that it’s time to replace your soffit:
- Poor ventilation: When in good shape, your soffit allows your home to breathe. It may be time to replace it if you can’t feel ventilation from your roof’s overhang.
- Pests: Your soffit is designed to keep rodents, large insects and other pests out. It’s time to replace it if you find evidence of pests, such as bite marks or nests.
- Water buildup: A damaged soffit can create cracks and water buildup inside your roof. This is a telltale sign that you need to replace your soffit.
- Wobbly gutters: Your gutters should run straight along your roofline. Bending or twisting could be a sign of soffit damage.
How To Save on Soffit Replacement Cost
While some soffit replacement costs are out of your control, there are some things you can do to save money.
- Choose the right material: High-end materials such as aluminum and vinyl provide longevity and value, but you can choose a less expensive soffit material to cut costs.
- Compare quotes: Compare pricing from multiple contractors. Though you’ll typically have to pay for a quote, most professionals can give you a rough estimate over the phone if you provide basic information, such as the linear feet of your replacement and the material you want to use.
- Remove your own soffit: It’s best to hire a professional to replace your soffit, but you don’t need to pay them to remove the old one. This job requires fewer tools and doesn’t require much skill to do yourself.
- Shop around for materials: Don’t assume that your local home improvement store or an online retailer has the best price. Compare pricing from several retailers before making a purchase.
Soffit replacement costs an average of $10 per linear foot, or $2,500 for a typical one-story home. However, these costs can vary depending on the material, project complexity, and other factors. Shop around for materials and labor to ensure you get the best price.
FAQs About Soffit Replacement Cost
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