If you’ve never owned a home or worked in construction, the terms soffit, fascia and flashing may be new to you. Understanding what they are, why they’re important elements of your roofing system and how to tell if there’s an issue, can keep a small issue from turning into a big water leak or other problem.


Your soffits are part of your roof’s ventilation. They’re easy to spot. Simply stand under your roof’s edge and look up. Usually they’re the same color as the house trim, but they look like corrugated cardboard with holes. Most modern soffits are plastic although metal ones are available.


Fascia or fascia board helps connect the roof to the side of the home. It’s where most gutters are attached. There are many materials. The most common being wood because it’s the cheapest, however it’s also the most prone to rot. Other materials include metal, vinyl and composite. If it fails, you end up with gutters that fall or no longer properly drain, water in your home or even a pest infestation.


Flashing is around all roof protrusions (chimneys, dormers and vents for example). It’s usually metal and requires sealing after installation. Properly installed and sealed flashing will keep rainwater out of your home. Usually the sealant requires replacing long before the roof or flashing itself.

How to Identify an Issue

We recommend that homeowners perform a visual inspection of their roof at least twice a year and after every major storm. Here’s what to look for regarding these three elements:

  • Soffits should be continuous and without cracks or breaks. Make sure that your shrubs don’t block any of the soffit and if you can walk in your attic to see that it’s unblocked there as well, you should.
  • Often, it’s hard to see your fascia, so the best way to check it is to look at your gutters carefully. Make sure they’re still properly affixed to your home and have not changed their slope or angle. If you can see it, make sure that there are no cracks or gaps that could allow water or insects in.
  • Your flashing is easy to see on most of your roof. If you notice an issue in one place, you should have a roofing contractor check all of it. Anytime the sealant looks cracked or broken, it likely needs replacing. Also, flashing that looks bent, likely has a problem.

Cooley Roofing can help with all sorts of roofing issues. Even if your roof doesn’t require replacing, you may need new soffits, fascia, flashing or simply a resealing of your flashing. Call us today at (336) 766-6488 if you think you have an issue with any part of your roofing system and we’ll provide you with a comprehensive quote for repair. You can also fill out our contact form.

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