What Nails to Use for Fascia Boards?

If you’re wondering what nails to use for fascia boards then you came to the right place. We will help you find the right type, size, and kind of nails as well as other fasteners to secure your fascia board. If this is your first time working with your house’s fascia board then we got you covered too.

Let’s get started with a quick answer to your question:

What Nails Are Best for Fascia Boards?

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There are many types of nails but the best ones to hold a fascia board is exterior-grade nails. These are finishing nails that have a smaller head. This design allows you to countersink the nails to produce a clean finish.

You may also use nails with heads as these are more secure in installing your home’s fascia board. Simply hammer regular nails further and use wood putty or caulk to hide the nail heads.

What are Fascia Boards?

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A fascia board is a piece of wood that’s below the roof line which secures the gutters for efficient water drainage from the roof. The fascia is mostly installed with a soffit or eave and is located between the rafter and the board.

The fascia board is not necessary as it does not have a specific use. But with a fascia board, you can cover ugly rafters and create a neat and compact appearance around your home.

Fascia is a Latin word that means a band or a strip of material. The fascia board wraps around the house to cover any exposed rafters and trusses. Your house’s exterior walls meet your roof with the fascia board on. Most of the time, homeowners don’t realize that their house has a fascia or they should maintain the fascia board as this is mostly covered up.

Fascia boards are not soffit but these terms are related and each one has a specific use. Soffits are exposed siding located under the overhang of the roof. You’ll find soffit in vinyl, aluminum, and also from wood.

Why Use a Fascia Board?

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You may not realize it but fascia boards have a lot of uses. It is the final support for the roof’s lowest portion whether you have a tile roof or shingles. The fascia keeps the gutters in place. Without it, the gutter will move and water will seep through your ceiling and damage your home.

The fascia improves the appearance of your home. It serves as a cover for rafters which often have rough and uneven ends. There are many types of materials you can use as fascia boards. You can choose one that matches your home design and your budget.

The fascia board also helps keep out pests, birds, squirrels, and insects. By covering the rafters with a fascia board, you’re keeping away insects or other animals from staying in your ceiling and destroying your roof and attic. If you live in a rural area, a fascia board can keep snakes, bats, and other dangerous creatures away from your home.

What are the Different Types of Fascia Board Materials?

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Fascia boards are available in many kinds of materials: wood, composite, aluminum, and vinyl. Let’s explore these materials one by one.

Wood

Wooden fascia boards are the most common because they are the most affordable, versatile, and easiest to use. Wood with high moisture resistance is the best type for making fascia boards. And you can paint over wood to improve its water-resistance qualities.

Wooden fascia boards are available in pine, fir, and spruce. These three kinds of wood are easy to use, very durable, and have high water-resistant properties. Also, most carpenters and roofers are familiar with wood fascia boards and are capable of constructing one more than any other material.

There are also some disadvantages of wooden fascia boards. Some woods are not water resistant and thus, you can expect the growth of mold, rotting, and burrowing insects. Wooden boards should be primed or painted regularly to make sure that they will last a long time.

Composite

Fascia boards may be made of composite materials such as recycled sawdust and wood chips bonded with epoxy resin. Although this is not as popular as wooden fascia boards, it is the choice of homeowners because it’s resistant to rotting and mold attacks. Composite boards are also durable and are colorfast.

Composite boards also come in many colors. You can find boards that match the color of your roof and exterior walls. This way, you don’t need to paint your fascia board to match your exterior elements. There are also some disadvantages of using composite fascia boards and one of these is that it’s very expensive. Also, composite boards may not be readily available and thus, you may need to order this from a dedicated supplier.

Aluminum

Another popular material used as fascia boards is aluminum. This is usually the choice when you want to upgrade your wooden fascia board. Aluminum material is very durable and very flexible. You can use it to wrap around wooden boards for improved protection from the elements.

Aluminum boards are a challenge to install. You can also paint over this material but this also comes in many colors. Like vinyl, you don’t need to maintain aluminum boards and you can guarantee that this will last a long time. You will need to hire a roofer to install an aluminum fascia board and this could be costly depending on the size of the board and the complexity of the task.

Vinyl

Vinyl fascia boards can be in polyvinyl chloride PVC or unplasticized vinyl fascia or UPVC. In vinyl fascia boards, you can purchase these ready to use from specialty hardware stores and dealers. These come with plasticizers to improve flexibility. You can use these together with wooden fascia to improve the lifespan of wooden fascia boards.

Many homeowners use vinyl fascia boards to improve curbside appeal. Vinyl fascia is also resistant to insects, water, and rot. You can guarantee that these boards will last a long time.

When it comes to UPVC, these are rigid and very durable. These don’t come with plasticizers. Just like PVC, these boards don’t need extra maintenance and will resist water, mold, insects, and rotting. UPVC is also resistant to different kinds of chemicals and water.

What Are The Best Fastening Hardware Used for Fascia Boards?

The right fastening hardware such as nails will depend on the type of fascia board material you’re working with. For wooden fascia boards, finishing nails with no heads is the best choice. These nails are capable of “hiding” in the wood grain.

Aluminum Fascia

For aluminum fascia, you need nails that are at least ¾ inch. You must first drill holes in the aluminum before installing the nails. Take note that the holes must be slightly bigger compared to the nail shank.

You must not drive nails too much into the aluminum. You need to leave at least 1/32 inches allowance for temperature changes. Experts recommend only aluminum nails. The distance between the nails must be at least 18 to 24 inches apart. Allow at least 4 inches of distance from the drip edge to prevent nails from damaging due to corrosion.

Hardie Trim

Hardie Trim Batten Boards is a decorative trim that’s used in non-load applications. These are about 19 mm thick and 64 mm wide in 12 feet lengths. To install Hardie Trim boards on a wood frame, use a 6d siding nail, a nail that’s resistant to corrosion.

These boards need 2 inches, 16 gauge corrosion-resistant finishing nails when installing fascia to double sub-fascia material. The distance between nails should not be closer to ¼ inches from the edge of the board. These must not be closer than one inch from the end of the board. If you’re using a pneumatic nailer, drive the nails flush on the surface of the Hardie Trim.

How to Replace Fascia Boards?

At some point, you will need to replace your fascia board. This is very common in wooden boards as wood is susceptible to rotting corrosion, and insect attacks. When these issues happen, you need to remove not just the affected section but allow at least a few feet distance from the damaged area.

To replace the damaged part, you need 4d galvanized casing nails to install the new part. Remove the damaged fascia board and cut the damaged wood away. Use a miter saw to remove the damaged part from the good part creating a rafter connection.

Use 2-inch galvanized deck screws to re-install the remaining good part of the board. Take the new board and miter this with the old. Finally, secure these to the rafters using a nail-lock joint attached with 4d nails. Some roofers prefer to use screws than nails when they are replacing fascia boards. Screws will prevent jarring the frame through hammering.

Different Nail Grades and Nail Heads to Install Fascia Boards

The best type of nails for installing fascia is exterior-grade nails. Use nails with smaller heads as these can be easily hidden through the wood grain. Some roofers and contractors prefer to use nails with tiny heads. These are very secure but may be seen from the surface of the wood. If this happens, use wood putty or caulk to cover the nail heads before painting or applying stains.

How to Maintain Fascia Boards?

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Just like any section of your home, you need to make sure that your fascia board is well-maintained and in good shape. A well-maintained fascia board will keep your home looking updated and improve curb appeal. We have here top tips to maintain your fascia boards.

Choose PVC fascia boards instead of wood

Wood may be versatile but not as durable as PVC fascia boards. We recommend PVC boards as these don’t require regular maintenance and will only need wiping to remove dust and dirt. PVC fascia boards are also durable and can withstand years of use. 

Also, PVC boards are available in many colors and so, you don’t need to paint over the surface. You can readily use boards that match the color of your roof or exterior walls.

Ensure the fascia board installation covers everything

Fascia board installation is a part of roofing services but most roofers have different takes as to the extent of this service. Be sure that when you hire a roofer for fascia board installation, replacement, or maintenance, it should cover everything. Roofing or contractor services must be clearly indicated in your service contract.

Remove the old fascia board before installing a new one

You can’t just install a new fascia board over an old one. This is not a good practice as you are merely covering the damaged part. If the old fascia board is damaged due to moisture, molds, and insect attacks, you need to remove these right away and install a new one.

It would be best to inspect your fascia board thoroughly and regularly for any signs of damage, decay, or insect attacks. This is important especially if you have a wooden board.

Always use a ladder for safety

A good and sturdy ladder is your best friend when maintaining your fascia board. A ladder will help you reach your board to inspect it and to make any repairs. There are many types of ladders. Use one that can clearly and safely reach your fascia board and your roof as you need to inspect the fascia together with your roof.

Regularly inspect your fascia board for signs of wear

Inspection of your fascia boards must be done regularly. Do this twice or thrice a year and also after storms, hurricanes, snow, and high winds. If you can’t inspect your board, have a professional do this for you. The inspection goes hand-in-hand with maintenance so it’s best to invest in this as well.

Beware of angled boards

Angled boards or bowing boards could be a sign of early wearing of your fascia boards. Board with these shapes could be ready to crumble due to molds and insect damage. Also, there could be debris or water lodged at the part of the roof where the dame is obvious.

As soon as you see your fascia board angled or bowing, climb up and inspect the board. Check the roof and the gutters for any debris or water. And as much as possible, replace the angled or bowing part right away. If you have wood fascia boards, upgrade to aluminum or PVC boards.

Monitor water flow on your roof area near the fascia board

Water is the most common culprit for bowing and angling fascia boards. For this reason, you must always monitor water flow near the area. Inspect the roof and gutters. Make sure that these are free from debris, leaves, twigs, and insect nests. Also, decaying wooden boards may crumble and leave remnants of the wood in the gutters. These can obstruct water flow and lead to problems with your fascia boards.

It would be best to clean the gutters and the roof and check the health of your fascia boards before and after a storm. Make sure rainwater is flowing so you won’t have to deal with any issues after the storm.

Use epoxy for early signs of deterioration

Sometimes, you don’t need to change the entire fascia board at all. This is true especially when there’s very little damage or signs of deterioration. A small crack or a chipped particle on your wooden fascia board should not be a worry. Use epoxy to glue the part shut. This will help keep the fascia board sturdy and you won’t have to spend money on a new board and for a contractor right away. It would be best to monitor the area regularly for worsening issues.

When to Change Your Fascia Board?

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Usually, fascia boards will last a long time without having to change them. However, there are some types of damage that may signal that you need to change your fascia board right away. Here are some of them:

Moisture damage

Unsealed fascia boards or those installed without trims may become damaged due to severe moisture exposure. The most common culprits are leaking roofs and snow accumulation. These conditions will lead to moisture accumulating inside the boards and damage will soon follow.

Also clogged roofs and obstructed gutters may also expose the fascia boards to moisture. If you don’t replace the fascia, the wood will eventually rot and give out. Your gutters can become damaged or water can move into the home.

Fungus, mold, and algae damage

Wood fascia boards that are constantly affected by water and moisture are susceptible to mold and fungus as well as algae attacks. If your wood fascia board has a light color, you’ll instantly see mold and fungus development. These appear as black dots or marks on the wood.

Although these may not be too worrisome at first, this mold or fungus can cause severe health risks. And these could be very dangerous too as the wood is very compromised and can fall to anyone or anything below it. Thus, you must replace your fascia boards at once at the first sign of mold, fungus, or algae attacks.

Cracks

If you find cracks on the fascia board, you may need to replace the board right away. Cracks are often due to changing environmental temperatures and also because of water damage. Also, aging fascia boards may crack due to natural aging. Cracking fascia boards must be changed right away.

Bowing

As we mentioned before, any signs of bowing or angling must be addressed right away. Bowing indicates structural damage not just in the fascia board itself but also within the ceiling or the roof. If you find bowing, consult a contractor at once.

Holes

Holes in the fascia could be due to many problems. There could be small animals gnawing or eating through the fascia or there could be insects burrowing holes in. If you spot holes in the wood, check for any creatures inside the wood. You may need to call a contractor or a roofer to help you find the problem.

Peeling layers

Don’t ignore peeling paint on fascia boards. Peeling paint is usually due to moisture and temperature changes which makes the paint film move and become loose. Cracked paint may also become exposed on different edges and fall off after some time.

If you don’t do anything, the affected area can become wider and continue to peel off.  Replace fascia boards with peeling paint at once. Inspect adjacent boards for any signs of wear or damage as well.

Can a Regular Roofer Replace Fascia Boards?

Roofers may offer different services and one of these is fascia board replacement. It may be best to ask a roofer or a roofing contractor beforehand if they provide this special service or you may need to hire a separate contractor to deal with the damage.

Replacing fascia boards is not a DIY project. You should never attempt to do this task even if you have all the tools and materials. You must be a licensed roofer or contractor and must be trained to handle fascia board installation, maintenance, and replacement.

And when hiring a roofer or a contractor, always indicate that you need fascia board replacement. This will prevent any hidden charges or costs. Usually, a site inspection is the first thing that a roofer or contractor will do to assess the damage. Once they’re done assessing the damage, they can give you an estimate of the job at hand.

Final Words

The right nails for fascia boards are headless nails that can be driven deep into the wood. But with the different materials used to make fascia boards like aluminum, PVC, and UPVC, there are other and better fastening materials to use.

Learning all the important things about fascia woods, their uses, available materials, and care can help you maintain your fascia boards and make these last for a long time. Also, well-maintained fascia boards will improve the overall appearance and appeal of your home. 

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