Five Issues That Can Damage Roof Eaves

A roof is more than the shingles that cover its surface. The eaves are an important component of the roof. They consist of two main parts. The fascia is the front facing edge of the eaves, while the soffit is the underside of the roof edge. Know the common types of damages so you can spot and repair problems early.

1. Dry Rot

Exposed wood, dry heat, and the UV rays of the sun can cause dry rot. When wood suffers from dry rot, the natural oils dry up and the wood begins to disintegrate. You can minimize the issue by conditioning and resealing the wood every couple of years, particularly in areas with full sun exposure. To solve the problem permanently, consider upgrading to metal or vinyl eaves.

2. Moisture Damage

Moisture damage also leads to rot, but it's different than dry rot. Instead of drying out and shrinking, the wood fibers become hyper saturated and swell. This causes the fibers to burst and the wood weakens. You can easily dent the wood with the tip of a screw driver if moisture rot has set in. Keeping the wood sealed or painted prevents moisture damage, or you can replace the eaves with metal or vinyl.

3. Missing Soffit Vents

There are always small vent openings in the soffits. These take in outside air, which flows through the attic to force hot air out the ridge of the roof. The vents should be screen off so that small animals and insects can't invade your attic. Sometimes, the screens become damaged or missing. If this happens, you need to promptly have them replaced. Otherwise, you may end up with bees in your attic or birds nesting inside your eaves.

4. Woodpecker Issues

Woodpeckers don't just drill into trees. They can also leave holes in your eaves. Woodpeckers and sapsuckers peck at eaves for one of two reasons -- either to feed on pests inside the wood or to perform a drumming behavior to mark territory and attract mates. Both types of pecking damages eaves. The only realistic way to prevent is to swap out wooden eaves for more durable metal.

5. Pest Problems

Wood boring insects like termites can destroy your eaves. Worse, they may move to other parts of the home once they have finished with the eaves. Keeping the wood in good repair and making sure it remains sealed or painted minimizes the chances of pest issues, but upgrading to metal or vinyl is the only way to ensure your eaves remain pest-free.

Contact roofing contractors in your area if your eaves require repair or replacement.