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Installing vinyl soffit over wood

The main purpose of the roof of any house is to protect the interior from precipitation. But the protection cannot be complete if the eaves are left open.

In the past, different materials were used to hem the eaves, but today there are special soffits.
Today, soffits are an essential element for creating the structural integrity of the house. In addition, soffits allow the roof to perform its direct duties in full.

The article will talk about what is soffit siding, what types exist, where the described material is used, how to install it.

What is soffit siding?

Soffits are PVC panels or metal strips, on the surface of which there are holes for ventilation. They are used to covering horizontal or vertical surfaces turned to the bottom.

The most common area of application – cladding, the bottom of the gable overhangs, formed after the installation of the roof. In this case, siding simultaneously performs several functions: it closes the frame of the bottom of the eaves, protects it from weather precipitation and wind, as well as the penetration into the underlay area of birds and insects, provides ventilation inside the roof. Without it, condensation will accumulate on the inner surface of the roof. It can penetrate in the form of evaporation into all layers of insulation and soundproofing and reduce the service life of the roof.

Perforated siding is available in a universal palette. Externally, the modules look like slats, divided into several equal parts. On the surface of each is perforated – small holes, on the sides there are locks for mounting. It is thanks to them in the space under the eaves is a good circulation of air. Without it, the accumulation of moisture leads to the formation of fungi and mold, as well as rotting processes.

Types of soffit

Today, perforated “soffit” siding is available in several types:

  1. Panels with full perforation. They are used to decorate the roof overhangs in order to provide ventilation inside.
  2. Panels with partial perforation. They have holes for ventilation only in the central part of the panel. The scope of use of this material is identical to the first type.
  3. Panels without perforations. They have no holes, such material is now used mainly for cladding gable overhangs.

Sometimes three types of soffit siding are used in the assembly of the roof. This solution becomes justified in certain structural features of the roof.

According to the number of slats, soffits are divided into single, double, and triple. They differ from each other by the width of the panel.

Classification of material

There are several criteria that can be taken as a basis for the systematization of the described products.

According to the material of manufacture, it is divided into two types. Some manufacturers use PVC as raw material, while others use thin sheets of copper, steel, or aluminum, covered with a protective polymer film. It, too, may have a different composition. A protective layer can be used, plastisol, polyester, or pural. Different coatings determine the different durability of the product. But, in general, metal products last longer than plastic siding. The advantages of buying a metal soffit are obvious: You can buy a different color siding, it is possible to use soffits under the tree. They do not fear ultraviolet light, do not burn out in the sun, so this type of finish is considered, today, the highest quality and modern.

Advantages of choosing soffit siding for roof eaves

To list the positive aspects of the described material can be a long time. Experts recommend choosing it because of soffits:

  • fire-resistant, they do not support combustion, they are not afraid of corrosion and rotting;
  • resistant to temperature fluctuations (operating range lies within the range of -58 °F to 176 °F);
  • are not food for rodents;
  • help hide the roof frame from prying eyes.

If you choose to hem the roof overhangs described material, its design will get a finished appearance. Today, soffits are used to trim the ceilings of outdoor summer verandas, balconies, and summer pavilions. They found their application in the construction of new buildings and in the reconstruction of old buildings. The design of slats is created in such a way that you can in the shortest possible time to perform the necessary type of work, without attracting professional craftsmen. Both PVC panels and strips made of metal are not afraid of mechanical stress. They do not need to be treated with additional protective layers before installation and then, during the operation of the house.

In the case of contamination of the siding, the surface can be washed with water and detergents. One element has a small weight, so the lining of the eaves does not form a load on the load-bearing elements of the building. Significant disadvantages of soffits do not have.

What to use for installing vinyl panels

Mobile Home Skirting Vinyl Underpinning Vented Panel

Mobile Home Skirting Vinyl Underpinning Vented Panel
  • Panel Thickness: .037″
  • Weatherproof and never needs painting.
  • Easy to install with basic tools.

 4,7 Rating

View on Amazon

Norske Tools Siding Cutter

Norske Tools Siding Cutter
  • Sturdy, high-quality steel and aluminum construction.
  • Adjustable from 0˚ to 45˚.
  • Includes 13” high-speed steel blade.

 4,6 Rating

View on Amazon

Metabo/Hitachi HPT Finish Stapler

MetaboHitachi HPT Finish Stapler
  • Accepts 18-gauge narrow crown staples.
  • Holds up to 130 staples.
  • 360° adjustable exhaust.

 4,7 Rating

View on Amazon

Features of soffit installation

In order to mount the siding, it is necessary to use component parts. For vinyl siding, you will need to purchase an additional H-shaped profile, L-shaped profile, Ms-shaped bevel, and finish strip. The metal siding package differs only in one detail. Instead of using the finished profile is the usual chamfer.

The soffit installation process is performed in three stages. The first is the installation of purlins. To do this, wooden bars with a section of 4 or 6 cm are used. First, two parallel bars are attached: one on the side of the outer wall, the other on the edge of the plumb line. These two laths are not recommended by specialists to fasten to each other with cross pieces.

On the second of the slats on both sides are attached starter strips. The distance between them is measured. From the figure obtained, subtract 6 mm, you get the length of one element of the soffit. It is entered into the grooves of the attached strips, set perpendicular to the rails, and fastened to them with screws. Press them loosely, otherwise, the temperature fluctuations will provoke deformation of the soffit. Slats are fastened to each other with a lock.

The third step is to join the soffit. To do this, use an H-shaped profile.

The main rules for the installation of vinyl siding

  • Vinyl siding is not nailed down but suspended. This is one of the design features of plastic panels. They should be free to move relative to each other so that the fastening nails end only at the end. Between the head of the nail and the mounting flange should always be a gap of 1.0-1.5 mm.
  • When installing vinyl siding, you must take into account the temperature of the ambient air and make heat passes adapted for this temperature. At high temperatures (up to 86 °F and above), the panels are already in an elongated state, so the thermal gaps can be kept small (5.0-6.0 mm).
  • Conversely, at low temperatures (near CPC and below), the gaps need to be made larger (up to 10.0-12.0 mm) as the panels elongate as the temperature rises.
  • When connecting the panels along the overlap, place the transitions next to each other and avoid the formation of a staircase pattern that catches your eye.
  • When installing, try to maintain the straightness of the panels. The firm interlocking of the locks of the panels ensures the straightness of the rows. Straight lines are especially important on walls where windows, doors, or other parts are installed at the same height.
  • Avoid many J-profiles in prominent skin areas. Most J-profiles can be replaced with wide window frames and doors or special inserts, such as for inside corners.
  • Plan unit locations for reliable drainage and always install drainage skirts.
  • Always align the trim with the top edge of the windows. Calculate the height of the starting strip profile setting so that the cladding panels are flush with the tops of most windows.

How To Install Soffit and Fascia Trim – Video

Max Welder

Max Welder

Hi! I'm Max Welder ( I always wanted to work with my own hands, repair something, do things. Now I combine my knowledge with computers and my own knowledge in the field of mechanics in order to understand which tools I like the most. I hope to convey some knowledge and experience.

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