What Causes Wood Fascias to Rot?

We installed a new eaves trough system for a Calgary client a couple of months ago. We almost begged him to replace the fascia boards at the same time, while they were exposed. No worries, he said, I’ll tidy them up later. Last week he was back on the phone, ordering a new set of fascias.

We didn’t have the heart to charge him for removing the new eaves troughs and replacing them. We’re great believers in leaving clients happy, because we get referrals. What goes around comes around we say. The customer took the day off to keep us supplied with tea and coffee. When we got to chatting he asked, what caused those fascias to rot?

What We Told the Customer on That Sunny Day

Well we explained, the old fascias were wood. And wood, being organic eventually rots. We can think of five popular reasons, if you could please pardon the expression.

1… Your greatest enemy is water, we continued. It causes the wood to swell and open up cracks, and weak points in the grain. Various things can take root there, including moss and fungi that weaken the fibers. Once rot sets in, it’s the beginning of the end.

2… Ineffective roof design, installation, or maintenance can result in loose, or deformed shingles that drip rainwater and snow melt onto the fascia. This can take years to break through the timber unnoticed, especially if the leak is behind the fascia.

3… Storm damage can tear away at exposed boards, eventually loosening the fastenings and admitting moisture to the heart of the wood. Prolonged exposure to wind and rain work away at the timber until it fails.

4… Badly aligned eaves troughs can allow capillary action to draw rainwater and melt behind the fascias, where the homeowner may be unaware this is happening. It really does make sense to arrange an annual inspection.  A stitch in time does save nine.

5… And finally, a clogged down spout can cause the water to dam up in the eaves trough, and overflow in large volume. A wood fascia was never intended to withstand such abuse. We simply cannot afford to allow this happen.

This information is presented with compliments of Valiant Exteriors, proud installers of quality roofs, fascias, soffits, eaves troughs and down spouts throughout Calgary.

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