Soffits may not be as visible or as flashy as other roofing components, but they are nevertheless important roofing components. Here’s what makes them so critical.
What Are Soffits?
A standard sloped roof has an overhang between the top of the exterior wall and the rafter tails. In most architectural styles, this overhang leaves a gap that exposes the attic to dust, leaves and airborne debris. It also provides access to small animals. Soffits are installed to protect these areas and create a more finished look.
Soffits are also part of the attic ventilation system. Exhaust vents at the ridges release hot and moist air, which creates negative pressure within the attic. This pulls fresh and cool air through the soffits. Architectural styles like Craftsman feature roofs with exposed rafter tails and/or tongue-and-groove roof decks. These roof styles typically have exposed roof decks and, therefore, won’t have an attic space that requires ventilation.
Does Your Home Need Soffits?
If your home has an attic, you probably need soffits. They provide the following benefits:
Proper Attic Ventilation
Proper attic ventilation helps prevent problems in the attic caused by trapped heat and moisture, including moisture damage to insulation and structural components. Trapped heat in the attic can also cause ice damming during the winter season, which leads to unplanned roof repair.
Keeping the Attic Clean
As we described above, soffits prevent dirt and debris from entering the attic and help keep it clean. Since soffits are exposed to the same conditions as your roof, gutters and siding, you need to choose soffits made from materials with low-maintenance requirements,like vinyl, fiber cement or aluminum with factory-applied coatings.
Soffits provide a clean look to otherwise exposed parts of the roof. While the color is often chosen to match the siding and/or trim, you can choose a different yet complementary color to add variety to your home’s exterior color palette.
Tri-County Contracting is your leading provider of roofing and other exterior services. Give us a call at (262) 679-6100. You can also fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We serve customers in New Berlin, WI, and the surrounding communities.