Repairing aluminum soffit


Old 08-21-06, 02:37 PM
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Repairing aluminum soffit

I lost some pieces of aluminum soffit to one of our Florida hurricanes and I want to replace what I lost. But, for the life of me, I don't know how to install the replacement pieces. Somehow I have to link the new pieces to the existing ones, and fit them into the two aluminum channels that run next to the house and inside of the fascia. The aluminum soffit doesn't bend well, and even if I could get the replacement pieces into the channels, I can't link them to the existing pieces. Do you have to slide them into the channels from an open end? If so, the existing pieces won't slide along the channnels without damage. The only way I can think of to solve the problem is to remove all the existing soffit on that side of the house and replace the entire soffit at one time. Can anyone help? Thanks
Old 08-21-06, 06:41 PM
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To install the soffit, you need to remove the fascia cover, or at least get it back out of the way so that the bottom edge of the wood fascia is exposed. You will then be able to slide the soffit into place. Soffit has a male side and a female side. I'm guessing you've figured that out already.

If the fascia cover is simply bent out of the way, you might be able to do the following: Slide the soffit toward the j-channel (against the house) by sticking the male side of the soffit into the female side of the (existing installed) soffit. Keep pressure on the back side of the soffit with your hand as you work the male side into the female side.

Alternatively, if the fascia cover has been removed, it often works best to slide the male side of the soffit into the female side from the end (starting near the fascia and sliding the piece back toward the house) keeping the pieces parallel as you push the new piece in toward the j-channel.

All the soffit you install should be nailed or stapled to the bottom front edge of the wood fascia.

The last piece you put up will be a tight fit, as it will need to fit perfectly between 2 existing pieces. So this means that you need to put up the soffit in EXACTLY the same place it was before- if it was installed tight, you have to install it tight. If it was installed loose, you have to install it loose. Usually aluminum soffit pieces are either 12" or 16" wide, so you can measure how much of a gap you have... (such as 96") and make sure that you stay on an even increment of 12 or 16 as you work your way back to the existing soffit. That way you'll be able to make corrections as you go instead of finding out that it's 1/2" too tight to get that last piece to fit.

Once all the soffit is up, you can replace the fascia cover.

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