Soffit is a construction term that refers to the undersurface of an exterior overhanging roof eave, arch, cornice or other building fixture. Most commonly it refers to the material that forms a ceiling from the top of an exterior house wall out to the edge of the roof. It serves to fill the space between the siding and the roof eave.
Soffit, derived from French, means “fixed underneath.” It is used in building elements where a ceiling is needed below or in addition to the actual ceiling. It is usually made of vinyl, aluminum, wood, steel or fiber cement.
Soffit isn’t just an aesthetic element for a roof – it also serves a useful function. Along with covering your roof eaves and beams from being exposed, it protect your
rafters from the weather. This prevents mold from building up in your rafters and keeps you from having to replace beams every spring.
Venting in soffit also helps air circulate through your attic and through your home, keeping the air from becoming stale while also preventing moisture from building up. Soffit comes either comes with vents or as solid pieces.
If you prefer solid, you’ll need to make sure you have vents installed elsewhere that will circulate the air through your home or add a vented soffit panel every few pieces to assure proper air flow. If your eaves were completely sealed, your attic would trap heat in the summer and make your home more expensive to cool. In the winter months, moisture from rain and snow would build up and rot your beams and mold would build in your rafters and sheathing without proper venting.
Soffit allows your home to cycle heat and moisture away from its structure and keeps your roof frame protected from damage. If you have questions or are in the market for soffit replacement or repair, give Precision Windows & Doors a call today at (816) 524-8999 or (913) 649-1199 for a free estimate.