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Taking Care of Your Soffits | Kents Direct | UK

How To Take Care Of Your Soffits

There’s plenty going on with your roof that you may not even be aware of. If you’re looking to keep your roof in good condition, you’ll need to know what it’s comprised of and how it works.

This article will help you understand how the soffits in your roof work, and how to take care of them. Read on to find out everything you need to know.

What are soffits?

Go outside and take a look at your roof. See the boards that run along the roofline? That’s the fascia. The board that runs underneath the fascia, parallel to the wall, is called the soffit. This piece of your roof has a very important job to do.

soffit-boards-how-to-look-after-them

Your roof is a prime target for moisture to collect, meaning mould can be a problem if your soffit isn’t in good condition. The soffit stops water and moisture from getting in and causing problems with the exposed timbers. As you can see, it’s vitally important that your soffits are in good condition.

How to check up on your soffits

You need to take a good look at every soffit at regular intervals. That’s because they’re so crucial to the continuing health of your roof. If a soffit is in bad condition, then your roof could be taking damage without you knowing it.

Take a look at the vents in your soffit. These help airflow to the roof, making sure it’s ventilated properly. You want to be sure that they’re not blocked or otherwise obstructed. If they are, clear the blockage if you can, as soon as you can. You’ll want to then check the beams in your attic to ensure rot isn’t starting to set into the wood.

soffit-boards-how-to-look-after-them

Also, check that the soffit hasn’t taken damage in bad weather. If they have, they may not be able to function correctly.

When to replace

If you’ve done extensive work on your roof, you may want to replace your fascias and soffits so they match the rest of the home. If that’s the case, you can pick them up from us. We have a wide range that can complement any home.

You’ll also want to replace if the vents or soffit itself has taken damage. The damage can stop it working properly and even let water into your roof, so you’ll want to replace it as soon as possible.

What to look for in a new soffit

The most important thing to look for in a new soffit is the material used. The best one to use is a PVC soffit, as this material is hard wearing, looks good, and will last you for years to come. You can even buy a soffit engraved to look like wood; if that’s the look you’re going for.

Come to Kents Building Plastics if you’re in the market for a new soffit. Our range is second to none, and our knowledgeable staff can help you out if you need a hand.

UPVC Fascia Boards are important – available from Kents Direct

Fascia Boards And Other Roofline Products You Need On Your Home

UPVC Fascia Boards and soffits are used to keep the house warm and dry - Kents Direct

Your roof doesn’t end with the tiles you place on it. There are actually a few different items that work together to keep your home warm, dry, and free of mildew and other unwanted problems.

If you’re planning work on your roof, you’re going to need to know what makes up your roofline. Here’s a quick guide to what you’ll find.

Fascia boards

fascia capping board

Fascia boards are what run directly below your roofline. It’s a rigid, unmoving board that helps support your roof tiles, and covers exposed roof beams. It also supports all your gutter pipes, as it’s the place where they’re attached.

Fascia boards are the first line of defence against the elements. Working with your guttering, they will direct water away from the timber of your roof, stopping water from getting in and causing mould to grow.

Soffit

hollow soffit irish oak

Take a look at your own roof. See the board that’s running perpendicular underneath the fascia boards, touching the house? That is your soffit.

This board has an important job to do, keeping your roof ventilated properly. Without it, condensation will build up in your roof, leading to mould and mildew starting to grow.

Most soffit boards come with built in ventilation, which you should keep an eye on; keeping them clean and clear of debris means that they can do their job better, for longer.

Bargeboard

concave decorative board

This board is usually found on the gable ends of houses, and offers an ornamental addition to your roofline. It hides any exposed timbers, making your roof look more finished and polished.

They’re also available in a wide array of colours and styles, meaning you can find a bargeboard that will suit both your home and your personal tastes.

Box end

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A box end is quite simply a way of combining together your fascias, soffits and everything else together at the corners.

It covers all the joins, and creates a neat corner to help your roofline products protect your roof, as well as looking good.

The composition of roofline products

Most roofline products these days are made from uPVC. This is because it is a tough, rigid plastic that can keep out even the worst of the elements.

It’s also more difficult for pests to get through, so they can’t set up home in your attic. Anyone who’s ever had pests running around upstairs would appreciate that.

As it’s a tougher material than wood, it means that it will last for much longer without needing to be replaced again. It also means that it won’t need painting regularly, saving you time and money.

Kent Plastic’s roofline products

If you need any of these products, we have plenty in stock here at Kent Plastics. We stock all kinds of colours, shapes and sizes, so you’re sure to find something that will fit in with your home.

Come and talk to us, and we can help you find exactly what you need. You’ll be amazed at how much choice there is!

Info on UPVC Fascia Boards | Kents Direct | UK

Everything You Need To Know About Fascias

Your fascias are something you never think about, until it’s time to replace them. Then, you find yourself in a hardware store wondering what you should know before you part with your cash.

If you’ve never bought them before, here’s everything you need to know about fascia boards.

What a fascia does

The fascia board creates a barrier between the house and the roof, stopping the elements from getting inside. It also provides the space for your drainage to be fitted.

As such, it’s actually a very important part of your home.

There’s a few other boards on your roof that you shouldn’t confuse with the fascia board. The soffit is the board that runs under the fascia, allowing for ventilation to the roof and giving further protection.

It’s also not the bargeboard, which runs along the front of your home and is usually ornamental, hiding exposed roof timbers.

upvc fascia board installation

 

The different colours and styles available

There’s plenty of different styles you can buy, to fit in with the rest of your home. Alternatively, you could buy all of your fascias in a new style and replace the ones you already have.

This would give the building a new lease of life and a fresh new look.

If you want a simpler look, a white fascia board is the way to go. It will match most people’s windows and other house fittings, and won’t date or age your home.

There’s also wood grain fascia boards available. These are a good idea if you have wood grain doors and windows, and want the rest of the fittings to match. It can really tie the front of your home together.

Finally, there’s coloured fascias available. There’s plenty of colours to choose from, and they can be used to add accents to your roofline that match your front door, or other fittings.UPVC Fascia Boards are important - available from Kents Direct

The materials used

Most modern fascias are now made from uPVC. These are plastics that are tough, and can withstand a lot of what the weather can throw at it. Seeing as their job is to keep water and other debris out of your home, it’s often the best tool for the job.

These boards can often be bought in ‘expanded’ or ‘foamed’ uPVC. This means that the plastic is thicker or more rigid than other fascia boards; when rainwater can wash several gallons per second over your roof, that’s something that you may want to investigate for your home.

 

Kent Plastics fascia boards

If you’re in the market for new fascia boards, here at Kent Plastics we have a wide array for you to choose from.

Either browse our range online or come into our store and take a look.

You’ll see that all of our fascias are made from quality uPVC, meaning that they’ll last for years to come. If you have any questions, all you need to do is ask.

Exterior Cladding Visualiser

If you are planning an extension, or new garden building or even have a few dormers that you need to re clad, it can be difficult to decide on the right colour.

cladding visualiser

 

Freefoam have come to the rescue with their Cladding Visualiser. Pick from a small range of houses the one that closely resembles your own, and play around to your hearts content until you find the right combination of colours that your think suit.

You would be surprised how good it looks to  mix lighter and darker shades to create a great looking contrast.

 

Spend some time on the visualiser before placing your Fortex cladding order 

 

Installing your new guttering | Kents Direct | UK

How To Install Your New Guttering

Your current guttering has seen better days, and it’s time to get it replaced. This job seems complicated, but it’s actually really easy to do yourself.

If you need some help, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s how to replace your gutters, step by step.

Before installation

Installing guttering by yourself - tips from Kents Direct

Before you buy your gutters, you need to keep a few things in mind. First of all, there’s several different styles of gutter, so you’ll need to pick which one is best for your home.

Also, you may want to buy a guard to stop debris falling into the gutters once they’re installed.

Finally, think about where that water is being redirected. Is it going into a drain or on the ground?

You can also have it drain directly into a water butt, if you want to save cash on water bills in your garden.

Step one: Fix your first bracket on the fascia board just below the roof line, on the opposite side on where the running outlet will be.

Step two: Fix another bracket at the other end of the fascia board, where the running outlet will be. Position it lower, so there will be a difference of 1 centimeter for each 3.5 meter along the board.

Step three: Now those brackets are in place, tie a length of string between them, and tie it off so it’s taut. Then, use a spirit level to ensure that there’s a slight downhill gradient between them. The bubble should be slightly off centre.

Step four: Now the two end brackets are in place, you can start fixing the rest of the brackets in. Position them every 1m along the length of the gutter run. Position them so the string just touches the inner edge of the bracket, where the guttering will sit.

Step five: Now your brackets are in place, measure the entire length of the gutter run. Then, measure out the right amount of piping to fit in it. If you need two or more pieces, they can be jointed together.

Step six: Cut any lengths of guttering with a hacksaw, if necessary. File the ends so they are smooth, and then clip them into place onto the brackets.

Step seven: At the running outlet, use an offset bend to direct water downwards towards your drains. Cut your downpipe to length, and then fix brackets along the wall to hold it in place. Add a downpipe shoe, if required.

Step eight: Now everything is in place, pour a bucket of water into the high end and check that it all runs back out. Make sure that it all ends up in the drain, and there are no leaks in any of the joins.

And there you have it. It really is much easier than you’d think to fit your own guttering!

If you need supplies, Kents Building Plastics have everything you need to get started. If you have any questions, our friendly staff will be there to give you a helping hand.

How to Clean and Maintain Your Gutters | Kents Direct | UK

How to Clean and Maintain Your Gutters

How to clean and maintain your gutters by Kents Direct

Your gutters are a humble part of your home, but they play an important role.

Without them, water wouldn’t be redirected to where it will do the least damage, and you’d soon be living with a soggy roof and foundation.

It’s important, then, that you take care of them, so they can take care of you. Here’s how to look after your gutters and keep them working.

Remove any debris that’s collected in your gutter

The first thing you’ll have to do is get up on your ladder and inspect your guttering. Many gutters end up inoperable because they’ve become clogged up with debris.

Leaves and other matter have a way of finding themselves in your gutters, especially in the autumn.

Check to see what’s been caught in your gutters. If there’s any debris, remove it by hand. This is usually the best way to get them clean, so invest in a good pair of gloves.

While you’re up there, take a look and see if where the roof meets your gutter is suffering any damage.

If the shingles are warped or cracked, they may need some attention before they start letting water in.

Ensure your downspouts are placed correctly

Now you’re looking at your gutters, look at where the downspouts are redirecting water.

Some are attached to underground drainage systems, so the water is sent directly into the underground drains to be carried away.

If yours simply deposits water on the ground, ensure that it does so at least five feet away from the foundation.

Any closer, and it could cause damage that will cost a lot more in the long run.

Maintain your gutter regularly

Now you have your gutter clean, make sure you keep on top of keeping it clean. Regular maintenance will help you catch problems quickly, and stop them becoming bigger problems.

It’s worth considering having a mesh installed over the gutters, to catch most of the debris before it makes its way into the drains and pipes.

Here at Kents Building Plastics, we offer the amazing Hedgehog Brush gutter guard, which is another great way of keeping leaves out of the gutter.

Replacing your gutters

If you’re in need of new gutters, Kents Building Plastics have a great range for you to choose from. We have round, square, ogee and deep flow gutters. They’re available in lots of different colours, so you can match them to your home.

The best part is that they’re easy to install. Get them up, keep them maintained, and you need never worry about them again.

What Are Soffits

What Are Soffits?

When it comes to roofing, there’s a lot more to the process than just putting the roof tiles on and calling it a day. You also need to finish the roof properly. We often get a strange look when we ask people what size soffit they need, and get the answer “what are soffits?”

Go outside and look up at your roof. That siding you can see around the lip? That’s your soffit. Here’s everything you need to know about soffits and your home.

What are soffits, and what do they do?

Your roof has a trim to it that finishes it and keeps the rafters enclosed. The front ‘lip’ just under the roof is the fascia. Running parallel from the fascia to the exterior wall is the soffit. This part of the roof keeps the roof beams enclosed, away from the elements.

how to fit fascia boards | What are soffitsA photo of a window with information tags | what are soffits

When you looked at yours, you probably saw that your roof has vents in it. This is vital to the maintenance of your home.

This is because your roof needs ventilation in order to stop the build up of moisture. Without it, the roof beams and surrounding woodwork can start to rot. If that happens, it’s an expensive job fixing the roof back up. It also stops mould from building up in your home.

Anyone who’s had to deal with mould knows that it can be a nightmare to remove, so you want to make sure your home is properly ventilated.

When should a soffit be replaced?

It’s worth checking your soffits regularly, in order to check that they’re still working efficiently. That means making sure nothing’s blocking the vents and stopping the airflow to your home.

The soffit is somewhat exposed to the elements, meaning it can take damage from snow, hail or rain.

Be sure to check them for weather damage, as again, this can stop them working properly and cause more problems in your home.

What should you look for in soffits?

The most important thing you want to look for when replacing your soffit is the material used.

There’s several different options available, such as aluminium and wood, but PVC soffits are usually the best for your home. There’s several reasons for this:

– It’s the most affordable option for most homeowners. This is the deciding factor for many people who are choosing new soffits.

– It’s an excellent material for insulating your home.

– You can customise the look of PVC, for example engraving it with wood grain, or having it made in different colours.

– It’s a man made material and so will not rot.

– PVC is completely water resistant, important when you’re keeping water out of the house.

– It’s very easy to clean. Give it a wipe every so often, and it will look as good as new.

If you have any more questions about soffits, or want to look into buying some for your home, get in touch with us at Kents Building Plastics.

We’re the experts when it comes to a soffit, a fascia, or any other plastic you need for your home. Give us a call and find out more.

Our soffits and fascia boards can be found here for more information.

 

How To Choose The Right Fascias For Your Home

Fascia Choices – How To Choose The Right Fascias For Your Home

fascia choices

There’s lots of small jobs that need to be done when you’re renovating your home. You often don’t even discover most of them, or why they’re needed, until you’ve already got started on your project. Fascias are one such thing you’ve discovered that you need to think about. What are they, what do they do, and what should you know before installing them? What are your fascia choices?

This guide has all the details.

What is a fascia, and what does it do?

A fascia is something that doesn’t stand out much on your home, unless you want it to. However, it has a big part to play in keeping your home in good shape.

It sits just under the edge of your roof, and looks like a small lip that runs around the edge. It’s quite unassuming, but this part of your roof is what’s keeping moisture out of your attic.

It does this by covering the wood and stopping rot from setting in. Without it, your roof would be in danger of breaking down due to water damage.

When would you need to install it?

Your home more than likely already has some installed, so if you’re doing work to your roof, you may want to install newer fascias.

You can also change them if you’re changing the look of the outside of the house.

How to pick the right fascias for your home – What are my fascia choices?

PVC Cladding weatherboard fascia choicesroof cladding | kents direct | fascia choices

There’s a few different things to keep in mind as you look for the right fascia. They are:

– Decide on a colour: You’re more likely to find a fascia in white, as that’s the basic colour that most builders use. However, it is possible to pick them up in different colours, too. There is also a range of wood effect grained colours. If you want it to match colours that are already on your home, such as your doors or window frames, it is possible.

– Pick a style: A fascia is considered a trim product, so the style that you pick can have a big effect on the look of your home. Most fascias are fairly basic, so they’ll sit under your roof and look unobtrusive. You can pick more varied styles too, if you want something that adds to the look of the home rather than hides away. It’s really up to you. Want to make a statement and stand out, or need to match up to a more elaborate style, there are a few different shaped boards and mouldings available to do just this.

Do you need more information on fascias? Still having trouble deciding on all the fascia choices? Want to know more about how to choose and fit them to your home? Ask us here at Kents Building Plastics.

We know everything there is to know about fascias, so give us a call or pop into one of our home improvement stores. We’re sure to be able to help you out.

How to fit fascia boards

Want to know how to fit Fascia Boards? Find out here

Professional fitters develop their own techniques for whatever jobs they specialise in, but it is important to follow a few standard safety procedures when carrying out any job.

With fitting fascia boards, one of the most important things to consider is that the property has been inspected for asbestos, as this material was often used in fascia boards and soffits.

If you’re in any doubt, you should contact your local authority for guidance.

Second, this type of work is not easily or safely carried out from a ladder and it is recommended that scaffolds are erected and used.

Not only will it ensure things are safe, but it makes the job a lot easier!

 

Getting started – How to fit fascia boards

Push back the second row of tiles, then lift and stack the first row to allow access to the fascia boards.

Once this has been done, check the condition of the felt along the top of the fascia. If it has dropped back, it could allow moisture to get to the exposed timberwork and this should be addressed.

The next step is to remove the guttering.

When it comes to refitting the guttering, it makes sense at this point to replace it with new; replacing old guttering can often lead to leaks and other problems.

Once the guttering is out of the way put back undamaged felt. Towards the end of the job, a section of damp course material or rigid PVC eaves tray will need to be fitted under the cut edge to allow moisture to run over the fascia and into the gutter.

The fascia boards can now be removed, but be aware that this is a heavy board with many nails sticking out. It needs to be done safely and isn’t a one-person job.

Fitting the hangars and soffit board

Sometimes the timber legs attached to the rafters will need to be knocked out so the soffit wall plate can be loosened.

Whilst this is off, check the rafters for damage and rot and then replace anything as needed. Failing to do this at this stage is a false economy.

There are several different techniques for providing a solid and well aligned set of fixing points for both the fascia and the soffit board.

For example, thick pieces of PVC can be attached to the rafter boards at either end of the run to act as hangars, but some installers use seasoned or treated timber instead.

Whatever material is used, it is important to set up a string line to check that all hangars in the run are in line, otherwise the soffit board won’t fit straight.

Each hangar should be set 10mm above the height of the last brick course, so the soffit board can be positioned between the bricks and the hangars.

Once each rafter has a hangar fitted to it, the soffit board is ready to be attached. Ensure a good fixing with plenty of nails or screws to prevent rattling during winds and always allow an 8-10mm expansion gap between boards.

Finish with soffit joint trim to cover the gaps. Once the soffit is firmly secured to the hangars, the fascia board can be attached.

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Attaching the fascia boards to the soffit

Whilst the protective cover is still on the fascia boards, mark two parallel lines where the plastic nails will be attached to each rafter foot.

This ensures that when the fascia is fitted, the nails will be as uniform as possible to give the best overall appearance. Remove the protective cover and nail into place.

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Finishing up

With the fascia boards now attached to the soffit, the guttering can be refitted.

Ensure the position of the running outlet above the downpipe is correct and attach the end bracket to the fascia boards at the point slightly higher than the outlet. To aid with lining these two pieces up you can post a plumb line through the outlet and get it perfectly lined up with the middle of the drain.

Next, mark out the intermediate gutter bracket positions at no more than 1m intervals, then attach and fit guttering.

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Finally, fit the over-fascia drainage system.

Some installers will use a rigid plastic section underneath the felt that was cut away, which will allow any moisture to drain into the gutter efficiently. With this in place, refit the tiles and admire your work!

youghal-installation-may06-22

Do you need to purchase fascia boards? There is a variety to choose from at Kents Direct.

Different Types of Fascia Boards

Different types of fascia boards

The fascia that runs around the top of a property below the roof, to which the guttering attaches, plays a much more important role than just looking good.

It protects what is a vulnerable area from the elements and without a sturdy fascia board, the weather can wreak havoc causing all kinds of problems.

Not only that but ensuring it is well fitted and maintained can prevent other issues, such as bird nesting and insect infestation.

With the colder months approaching, now is the time to give your fascia a little TLC if it’s looking a little worse for wear.

There are four main different types of fascia boards and choosing the correct type for your property can sometimes be a bit of a minefield for the uninitiated.

This brief read will point you in the right direction and help you to make an educated decision.

different types of fascia boards

 

Capping fascia

If you already have well maintained fascia board in place, capping fascia may be what you need, as they are perfect for attaching to existing wooden boards.

This means that you won’t have to go through the process of removing the old board, saving time and expense.

What’s more, capping fascia is one of the cheapest options so if you have a larger property or lots of area to cover, it could equate to quite the saving.

Capping fascia is ideal for quickly upgrading the appearance of the outside of your property.

Ogee fascia

An alternative to capping fascia is ogee fascia boards. These are much the same as capping fascia in how they are fitted, but it is important to ensure, just as with capping fascia, that the existing wooden fascia is in good condition.

Ogee fascia differs in that it has sculpted edges instead of square and therefore offers a different design element.

Of course, this is a matter of preference but just as with capping fascia, it offers a quick upgrade that can add character to your property.

Rounded fascia

Usually backing board is not necessary in order to fit rounded fascia boards and they can be attached directly to the foot of the rafters.

Often used in new build properties, rounded fascia boards will give a more contemporary look, so if that is your preference, you’d do well to start looking here.

Square fascia

As the name suggests, square fascia has a square edge. Just as with rounded fascia, it doesn’t usually require any backing board to fit, making this an easy option for fitting.

Finally, because this type of fascia is usually the smallest, it is often best suited to properties on the smaller side.

Final thoughts

Of course, much of this all comes down to personal preference, so you’d be well advised to look at all the options before making a decision.

If there’s only one piece of advice you take from reading this though, let it be to make sure that all of your timber, rafters and any fascia that will remain un-replaced is in good condition.

Fitting anything new on top of neglected or perished fascia is a temporary patch up at best and instead of sticking a plaster on the wound, it’s better to fix it up properly.