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Soffit & Fascia Glossary & Information

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Soffit & Fascia Glossary

SF glossary section 'A' SF glossary section 'B' SF glossary section 'C' SF glossary section'D' SF glossary section 'E' SF glossary section 'F' SF glossary section 'G' SF glossary section 'H' SF glossary section 'I' SF glossary section 'J' SF glossary section 'K' SF glossary section 'L' SF glossary section 'M' SF glossary section 'N' SF glossary section'O' SF glossary section 'P' SF glossary section 'Q' SF glossary section 'R' SF glossary section 'S' SF glossary section 'T' SF glossary section 'U' SF glossary section 'V' SF glossary section 'W' SF glossary section 'X' SF glossary section 'Y' SF glossary section 'Z'

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A

Apron Flashing: A horizontal flashing installed where the top end of a roof slpe meets a vertical projections, such as a c himne or parapet wall. Usually metal.

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B

Barge: A finishing at the gable end of a roof that is fixed parallel to the roof slope.

Base Flashing: The portion of flashing attached to or resting upon the deck with the purpose of directing the flow of water onto the roof covering. Piles or strips of roof membrane material used to close off and/or seal a roof at the horizontal-to-vertical intersections, covers the edge of the field membrane and extends up the vertical surface.

BMT: Abbreviation for Base Metal Thickness.

Box Gutter:  A gutter not an eave, typically at the base of two opposing roof slopes.

Box Miter: Adjoins two pieces of gutter at a 90° angle inside or outside.

 

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C

Cap Flashing: The portion of the flashing that is attached to a vertical surface to prevent water from migrating behind the base flashing.

Capping: A cover used at the top of a gap for weatherproofing.

Chimney Gutter:  Also known as a gutter Soaker; a small gutter located on the upper side of a chimney stack.  

Counter Flashing: A flashing that is dressed down as a cover only over a separate upstand.

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D

Downpipe, Downspout: A pipe used to transport water from gutters and roof catchments to drains or storage tanks.

Downspout Boot: A decorative extension placed at the end of the downspout

Downspout Clean Out:  Downspout extension that includes a trap for catching debris

Downspout Extension: A section added to the downspout to extend it.

Downspout Strap:  A simple strap designed to attach the downspout to a structure, also known as a leader strap.

Drainage: A system designed to direct water away from the house usually comprised of drainage pipes and gutters.

Drip Edge: A non-corrosive, non-staining material used along the eaves and rakes to allow water run-off to drip clear of underling construction.

Drop: Sometimes called a Pop; a short fitting in a gutter sole where rainwater leaves the gutter.

Drop Outlet: Formed piece that serves as the hole from which the water travels from the horizontal section of the gutter to the downspout.

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E

Eave:  The part of the roof that meet or overhangs the walls of the building.

Eave Gutter: A roof gutter attached at an eaves overhang.

Elbow: A pre-finished fitting that attach to the downspout. One end of the gutter elbow is crimped so that it can fit inside another elbow or downspout, placed at the bottom of the downspout near ground level to direct drainage in a particular direction.

Electrolytic (galvanic) Corrosion: Corrosion that results from the contact of two different metals when an electrolyte like water is present.

End Cap: Flat formed piece that attaches to and closes off the end of a gutter.

Expansion Joint: A joint in a long run of the gutter designed to allow for thermal expansion and contraction.

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F

Fall: The slope of the roof gutter, often expressed in degrees or as a ratio of vertical height to horizontal distance (i.e., 1 in 20)

Fascia: A flat board that runs along the eaves of a roof, typically capping the ends of the roof rafters to give the roof edge a more finished look and to provide a base for attaching gutters.

Fascia Bracket: A gutter bracket that mounts to the fascia board, also called a gutter hanger or hanger

Fixings Screw: A nail or clout used to fasten cladding to a building structure.

Flashing: A material, usually metal, used to waterproof the junction between two intersecting roofs and/or wall surfaces.

Funnel Outlet: An outlet placed on the outside of the gutter, used as a decorative alternative to a regular outlet.

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G

Galvalume: Steel sheeting that is protected against corrosion by aluminum and  zinc coating.

Galvanized Steel: Steel sheeting that is protected against corrosion by a zinc coating applied in a continuous hot-dip process.

Gauge:  Refers to the thickness of the gutter.

Girth: The width of the blank strip from which a profile is rolled, usually for gutters and flashings.

Gutter: A horizontal channel installed at the edge of a roof to carry rainwater and melted snow away from the house.

Gutter Slope:  The angle at which a horizontal section of gutter is tilted in order to force water to flow toward a downspout.

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H

Half Round Gutter: A gutter that has a half rounded shape.

Hanger:  A flat strap that is installed under the roofing material and used to hold up the horizontal section of the gutter.

Hanging Flashing: A side, front or back cover piece that is used to prevent water infiltration between abutting surfaces and other gutter flashings and soakers.

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I

Inside Miter Box: A corner piece of the horizontal section that is deflected inward.

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K

K-Style Gutter: Ogee Gutter.

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L

Leader: A pipe that carries rainwater from the gutters to the ground, sewer or wells.

Leader Head: A decorative box used to collect rainwater and guide it to the downspout.

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M

Mansard: A roof built at two pitches, the steeper pitch commencing at the eaves and the flatter pitch finishing at the ridge.

Mitered Corner: Where two pieces of gutter come together; adjoined by either a box miter or a strip meter.

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N

Nozzle: Also known as a pop; a short fitting in a gutter sole where the rainwater exists the gutter.

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O

Offset: A pipe fitting that directs a downpipe from the gutter, under the eaves soffit and down a wall or the distance from the outlet back to the wall of the structure.

Oil-canning: Variation from flatness of sheet metal, creating undulations along the surface resulting in a poor appearance and possible ponding.

Outlet: A formed piece that serves as the hole from which the water travels from the horizontal section of the gutter to the downspout, also referred to as the tube, drop outlet, funnel.

Outside Miter Box:: A corner piece of the horizontal section that is deflected outward.

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P

Pan: Built-in gutters are often referred to as 'box gutters' or 'pan gutters'. They are considered concealed roof drainage systems because they have low visibility.

Parapet: A wall on the perimeter of a building that projects above the line of eaves.

Penetration: A projection through the roof, like a vent pipe, roof light or chimney.

Pierce-Fastned: A method of fixing cladding by means of a screw or nail w hich pierces the cladding.

Pitch: The angle at which a horizontal section of gutter is tilted in order to force water to flow toward a downspout. Also referred to as the 'gutter slope'.

Ponding: When water pools instead of draining.

Pop: A short fitting in a gutter sole, where rainwater leaves the gutter.

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R

Radius Gutter: A custom gutter formed in rounded sections to accommodate a turret or round area with minimal seaming.

Rainhead: A box shaped receptacle that is sometimes used between a gutter and downpipe to provide an external overflow point.

Rib: A longitudinal upstand in cladding.

Ridge Capping: A formed metal designed to weatherproof the junction at the apex of opposing roof slopes.

Roof Mount: A method of installing the gutter attachment directly to the roof, i.e., a rod with a hidden bracket or a roof bar with a fascia bracket.

Run: A length of horizontal section of gutter.

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S

Saddle Strap, Straps: Flat hangers that are nailed into the house to hold the downspouts in place.

Sarking: A membrane to collect and discharge water clear of the structure so that it does not penetrate a roof or wall cladding.

Shoe: A fitting used in a downpipe to alter the direction of the downpipe by approximately 45 degrees.

Soaker Gutter: A small gutter located on the upper side of a chimney stack.

Soaker Flashing: A side cover piece extended over a roof cover and over-flashed with a hanging flashing. Formed metal designed to weather proof the perimeter of roof protrusions or penetrations. Soaker flashings are usually positioned under rather than over the surrounding metal roof.

Sole: The internal bottom surface of a roof gutter.

Spherical Cap: Radius end cap.

Splashblock: Plastic or concrete surface put under a downspout to direct water away from the house.

Spouting: Another term for gutter.

Spreader: A downpipe-tee or elbow fixed at 90 degrees to the roof slope used to spread storm water over a greater area of the roof.

Strap:  Flat hangers that are nailed into the house to hold the downspouts in place.

Strip Miter: A strip of metal to connect two pieces of gutter at  an angle  usually  90 or 135 degrees, strip miters do not have a loose corner as do box miters.

Sump:  A roof gutter pit used to connect downpipes to internal roof gutters.

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T

Tabbed Miter: Used to join two pieces of gutter at a compound angle or non standard (i.e., 90 or 135 degree)

Thermal Stress: The stress due to expansion and contraction that occurs due to changes in temperature.

Trays:  (Pan) Built in gutters, also called box gutters or pan gutters,  considered concealed roof drainage systems because othe their low visibility.

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V

Valley Boards: A gutter at the bottom intersection of two sloping roofs, also called valley flashing.

Valley Gutter: Timber or profiled metal laid under a valley gutter to support it.

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W

Wedge: Wedges are used behind fascia brackets to accommodate for an angled fascia or rafter tail. Wedges range from 7.5 degrees to 45 degrees.

Welded Seam Downspout: Welded seam copper downspout and elbows have a smooth seamless appearance versus the more  common folded seam.

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Z

Zincalume: Steel sheeting that is protected against corrosion by an aluminum-zinc coating.

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Soffit & Fascia 101

The word Soffit comes from a French word that means 'formed as a ceiling' and from a Latin word that means 'to fix underneath'.  Your soffit protects the under-hang of your home, and your gables as well as acting as a ventilation system that helps keep the moisture and heat from building up in the attic.  It also helps to prevent ice dams, damp attics and mold growth.

Fascia, which means 'band' or 'connector' in Latin, is the vertical edge that connects the gutter system and rafters. It is an additional protective layer of the roof, and protects against possible water damage during harsh weather, by preventing water from seeping into the home. It can also be used to contribute to your home's style.

A large part of keeping your home healthy and functional has to do with proper ventilation.  The amount of ventilation your home requires depends on various factors, like how large your home is, and the climate that envelops your home.

A proper soffit system can help you save energy costs by improving the comfort level inside your home and preventing heat build up in the attic, so that you can keep your air conditioning usage to a minimum. 

Proper Soffit systems also help keep your roof healthier,  extending it's life.

In the winter, you will have less likelihood of mold, mildew, wood rot and poor indoor quality on the inside, and less chance of ice dams or icicles on the outside, that can cause water back up which can then seep into the house causing damage.

An exterior soffit is located on the span beneath the rafter tails, while the fascia is the exposed horizontal band that is visible.  Together they give your home a finished look while protecting it from weather, birds, bats, squirrels and other pests.

Iossi is always glad to inspect your current soffit system and make recommendations based on their knowledge of the area and their experience with products that have worked well.

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Soffit & Fascia Care & Maintenance

While most soffit and fascia systems are relatively low maintenance, you will want to visually check them on occasion.  If you discover mold or mildew, you can use a soft brush or broom with a cleaning solution made from bleach and water to clean it.

You will also want to check for bee, hornet or wasp nest and have them removed.

Please call Iossi if you have questions or concerns. 

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