Fascia is the trim found typically underneath the roof, and covers the exposed rafter edges. Depending on the design of a house, often it is the fascia that supports the gutter system. Because vinyl and aluminum fascia don’t experience the same issues as wood does, they rarely need replacing unless damaged in such a way that the structure might be compromised. If the fascia on your home is made of wood or composite wood, then regular inspections could prevent costly repairs down the line.
The most likely problem wood fascia experiences is rotting. Water is one of wood’s worst enemies. If the fascia is streaked, this might be an indicator that the gutters are blocked and are overflowing.
Since fascia boards support gutters, another sign that the fascia needs replacing is a gutter system that sags in places.
Because it’s wood, fascia is also prone to cracking or warping.
Regular visual inspections every six months will help to spot any potential or developing problems and prevent them from becoming worse. Usually, however, rotting is already somewhat advanced by the time the more obvious visible signs appear. To check if the fascia has become soft, one of the first indications of trouble, find a place where two fascia boards are joined together. Press the ends on either side of the corner with a screwdriver to see if the fascia is spongy or breaks away. If it does, then the rotting process has already begun and the fascia should be replaced.