If there was ever a job that needed a scaffold tower, this is it!
What Are Soffits and Fascias?
Right, stick your head out the window and gaze toward the heavens. Do you see the box your guttering is attached to going around the bottom of the roof? The soffit is the underside of the box, and the fascias are the boards at the corners of the eaves. Attached to the soffits and fascias is your guttering. Guttering catches rainwater from the roof and takes it down to the ground and drains, so you don’t get soaking wet whenever you walk out of your home.
Scaffold towers make what could be one heck of a job into something far more manageable. Make sure you hire a scaffold tower for a week or so. If you have a two-storey house, you should hire a 5.2-metre tower. With colour-coded braces that click in, wheels and stabilisers, and toe-boards that all magic together within an hour you can be having a face-off with your fascias before you can say ‘Ladders are rubbish’.
Take Care of Your Gutters
Cleaning your guttering regularly from a scaffold tower will give your roof a fighting chance of holding off the rot, your house dry and your walls clear of the evils of water. Once a year get up there and rake away the debris of the year’s seasons. Always rake away from your downpipe, so you don’t block it with more nests and leaves. You can get a specially designed rake that suits your guttering perfectly, which makes your job even simpler.
Why not rig up a pulley system on your scaffold tower to pass down the debris to your second-in-command on the ground… your scaffold tower negates the need for a bucket dangling on the top rung.
Check your guttering carefully for breaks or deformities, lock in place any slipped guttering or brackets, make sure your downpipe joins are all in order. When there is more than a couple of things to fix, it’s better to just replace everything – especially if you have to replace the soffits and fascias: the little champions of the guttering world.
Fascias and Soffits
The fascias’ job is to secure the guttering to make sure that the rainwater drains properly from the roof. Overhanging the walls are the soffits, which should have ventilation holes according to modern building standards. The holes keep the roof aired so the wood isn’t damaged by damp.
Damage can include: water blown or splashed from the gutter rots timber fascias – something you’d be unlikely to see from your earlier peek out of the window. Even if you have recently painted your house there’s a large chance you won’t have painted above the gutters – just below – which opens the fascia up to the risk of rot. DON’T whatever you do just stick a plastic cap on the exposed or rotting fascia; while it may look nicer in the short term, all you’d do is encourage the rot to spread.
Old wooden fascias and soffits, and guttering made of anything but plastic means you are in serious need of a trip to the DIY shop! The most common option for updating roof boundaries is to use white, black or brown UPVC, simply because it is easy to look after: simply a wipe with a cloth and UPVC cleaner.
Of course getting a carpenter to build you new fascias and soffits is also an option, but you’ll have to maintain it carefully and yearly painting to make sure it doesn’t rot. Although some people try to patch-up their failing soffits, fascias and gutters, professionals consider the best approach is really to update it completely, whether you use wood or UPVC.