How to repair a house soffit

Written by kat oakley | 13/05/2017

The soffit of a house is important for not only looks, but also ventilation. If the soffit becomes damaged, it should be repaired as soon as possible. Repairing this underside or overhang section will prevent further damage to the roof, gutters and siding.

First find the cause of the damage to the soffit. Several conditions could cause damage to the soffit of a house. If it is made of wood, the soffit could be rotting due to too much moisture, causing fungi to grow and resulting in damage to the wood. The source of the wet wood should be addressed before it is repaired.

Wood soffit is also susceptible to insect damage. Termites are the main causes of insect damage and should be eliminated before repairs are made.

Soffit that is made from vinyl can become cracked in very cold temperatures or from an impact with flying objects. Just replacing the soffit on the house will remedy this issue.

Small animals or birds will borrow into cracks and small holes. Before replacing and repairing the soffit, be sure all the nesting and other materials left behind from the birds or animals is removed completely.

Remove the damaged soffit panel or panels. For vinyl siding, a zip tool is needed to separate the soffit panels. Take the necessary steps to prevent continuing or repeated damage.

For wood soffit, remove the moulding that surrounds the damaged section. Cut the damaged soffit section in a square or rectangular shape. If the soffit is tong and groove style, cut the hole following the wood grooves.

Replace the damaged section with a new piece or pieces. For vinyl, simply pop the new piece back into place and secure it with the zip tool. For wood, add strips on top of the existing, undamaged part to nail the new section to. For tongue and groove soffit, it is important to match the grooves on the new piece with the old. Secure the new piece with screws or nails.

After completing the above steps, if the soffit is vinyl, the project is complete. Wood soffit needs to be painted and sealed. Seal any raw edges with a weather proof caulk following the directions on the caulk for curing time. Then paint or stain to match the existing soffit.


Always use safety glasses when working with cutting tools. If a ladder is used, take necessary precautions to ensure safety.

Tips and warnings

  • Always use safety glasses when working with cutting tools.
  • If a ladder is used, take necessary precautions to ensure safety.

Things you need

  • Jigsaw
  • Zip tool
  • Caulk
  • Paint or stain

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