Roofing – What You Need to Know

The roof is an important part of a house. It protects against rain, snow, sunlight, extreme temperatures, and wind.


It also provides insulation that helps to keep the house warm in winter and cool in summer. Depending on the construction materials and installation, roofs can have varying lifespans. A person who specializes in roof construction is called a roofer. Visit to learn more.

Roofing shingles are the roof covering of choice for homeowners across the country. Shingles are a type of flat, rectangular element that are laid in courses, overlapping each other and held up by the roof rafters. They are available in a variety of styles, materials and colours to match the look of any home.

A shingle is an essential part of the overall structural integrity of your roof, as it seals out rain and other weather elements from the inside of the house. They also serve as an aesthetic showpiece, making the finished roof appear neat and tidy, as well as visually appealing to those who gaze upon it from below.

There are three main types of shingles: traditional asphalt shingles, organic shingles and fiberglass shingles. All have their own benefits and drawbacks, and some may be better for certain kinds of roofs than others.

Traditional asphalt shingles are the most common, and are usually composed of two layers bonded together with a layer of granules on top. The granules protect against the sun’s UV rays, which help to prevent the shingles from becoming brittle or faded over time.

In recent decades, shingle technology has improved significantly. For example, granules can be treated with copper, which helps to prevent algae growth and the discoloration it causes on the shingles. Many shingles today are also water resistant to prevent leaks, and some can even be treated against mold and mildew.

Another improvement in shingles is the use of advanced adhesives to reduce the risk of wind damage. The use of this technology allows the shingles to remain attached more securely to the roof, even in high winds.

A higher-end roofing option is the architectural shingle, which is similar to the traditional 3-tab shingle but contains a number of differences. First, the shingles are thicker and more rugged, giving them a more dramatic appearance than a regular roof. They are also made to mimic the look of shake, slate or tile roofs while offering improved performance and impact resistance.

Felt shingles are among the most popular and versatile shingles in use. They’re cheap, offer good roof load resistance and are easy to fit. They’re ideal for use on garden sheds and garages, but can also be used to cover more substantial homes. They’re not as long-lasting as other shingles, and they do not provide the same visual appeal as metal or cedar, but they are still capable of giving your home a great deal of character.

Metal Roofs

Metal roofing is used on commercial and industrial structures. But it can also be a great choice for a residential roof. It offers a wide range of styles and colors, and it can be installed in a variety of ways. Metal roofs are durable and long-lasting, and they can add to a home’s resale value.

The most common type of metal roof is the standing seam style. This is typically made of 24 or 26 gauge steel with a Kynar 500 paint finish, which protects the material from corrosion. Many roofers offer a variety of paint finishes, giving you the option to choose your color and style preferences.

Other types of metal roofing include corrugated and shingle-style panels. Both of these types can be constructed with either exposed or concealed fasteners. Exposed fasteners are visible on the roof and create a more industrial look, while concealed fasteners are hidden by the panels and create a clean, finished appearance.

Another popular type of metal roof is galvalume. This is an aluminum-zinc alloy that provides a combination of durability and aesthetics. It is also resistant to rust and corrosion, and it is an energy efficient option that can reduce your cooling costs.

In addition to choosing a color and style, you should consider the cost of the metal roof and its installation. Metal roofs generally cost more than shingles, but they have a longer lifespan and are highly durable. Plus, they can often be installed over existing shingles.

If you want to install a metal roof, it’s important to work with a certified and experienced roofer. They can help you choose the best metal roof for your home and ensure that it’s properly installed.

It’s a common myth that metal roofs are noisy during rain or hailstorms. But the truth is that they aren’t any noisier than other types of roofs. Plus, a metal roof doesn’t sit directly over your living space; there is a whole roof deck between the two. If you are concerned about noise, adding more insulation may be a good solution.


Roof underlayment, which is installed on the wood boards that make up a roof’s skeleton (also known as the roof deck) before the shingles are placed on it, offers a secondary line of defense against the elements. It safeguards against leaks and other damage that can be caused by water, snow, hail, wind, and other weather conditions. Without underlayment, rainwater might seep beneath the shingles, leading to problems like mold, mildew, and rot. Underlayment also enhances a roof’s fire resistance and improves its overall durability.

Underlayment is available in a variety of materials, each offering slightly different properties and price points. Felt paper underlayment is the most economical option, and it’s usually soaked in asphalt to help it resist moisture. Felt paper typically comes in two weights: 15 pounds per square foot and 30 pounds. The 30 pound felt will provide a higher level of protection, but you should talk to your roofer about which type is best for your home.

Other types of underlayment include synthetics and rubberized asphalt. Synthetic underlayment is lightweight, strong, and waterproof. Rubberized asphalt underlayment is more expensive, but it’s also more durable than felt. Both offer a better level of protection than traditional felt, but the choice you make will depend on your budget and local climate conditions.

The type of underlayment you choose should also be compatible with the roofing material you plan to use. For example, an asphalt shingle roof requires moisture-resistant underlayment to guard against leaks.

Depending on your home’s location, building codes will also dictate which type of underlayment you should use. For instance, many places require underlayment that complies with local fire rating standards.

You should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying underlayment. The underlayment should be free of creases and bubbles, and it must be firmly adhered to the roof sheathing. Most roofers fasten the underlayment with staples or nails, although in high-wind areas and with synthetic underlayment, it’s common to use nails that come with plastic caps.


Flashing is sheet metal that reinforces the joints of a roof system to prevent leakage. It is typically installed around penetrations, which are points where a roof meets something other than the roof deck. Examples include chimneys, skylights, vent pipes, dormer windows, and wall openings. It also is used in roof valleys and ridge edges to protect these areas from rainwater. Flashing is custom fabricated to fit each job by using a tool called a brake, which clamps an aluminum sheet and bends it into whatever shape or profile is required. The resulting flashing is then lapped under the roofing materials above it.

A professional roofing specialist will choose the right type of flashing to install. This is primarily based on the roof material, but other factors, such as pipe diameter and penetration width, will also be considered. It is important to avoid the use of tar or other petroleum products on rubber flashing components, as these will degrade the material over time, leading to leaks and other problems.

Proper flashing installation will allow a roof to remain watertight and able to stand up to harsh weather conditions. It is critical that flashings are correctly matched to a particular roof, and that they be properly maintained and replaced when needed.

Flashings can be categorized as either exposed or embedded, with the former being the more common type of flashing. Both are fabricated from durable materials, such as metal and rubber, which have excellent resistance to harsh weather conditions. The difference is that exposed flashings are partially visible and can be inspected for damage or wear.

There are several types of flashing, including base flashing, counter-flashing, step flashing, and valley flashing. Base flashing is a piece of metal that sits where the roof plane and a vertical protrusion, such as a chimney or dormer window, meet. More flashing is then layered over the base flashing to protect the vulnerable crease between the two surfaces. Counter-flashing is a similar type of flashing that gets installed over the top of step flashing, and it serves to redirect rainwater away from the vulnerable ridge line.

Roof Maintenance – How to Spot Potential Problems

The roof provides the first layer of protection from weather events and debris that can damage the structure below. Routine maintenance and inspections are the best way to spot potential problems before they become serious.

Roof Maintenance

Check interior signs of water damage such as mold, mildew, water stains, and peeling paint. Also inspect stairs, crossovers, and platforms for structural soundness and surface deterioration that could cause an unsafe working environment. Visit Website to learn more.

Debris can be very damaging to the roof, so removing it on a regular basis is essential. If left unattended, debris can block drains, encourage the growth of moss and algae, and allow elements to penetrate the surface and damage or rot the shingles. It can also cause water to accumulate on the roof, resulting in leaks and other structural damage to the home.

Debris removal is a job best done by a professional who is trained in the proper techniques and safety precautions. If you’re comfortable working on the roof yourself, start by picking a sunny day that isn’t windy. Windy conditions can create a risk of falling debris, and rainy weather can make the roof slippery, increasing your chances of slipping or getting hurt.

Begin by clearing the large piles of debris that have collected on your roof. This may be as simple as using a broom for light debris like pine needles or dry leaves. A leaf blower is preferred for more substantial amounts of debris, as it can remove the debris without damaging the roof shingles themselves. However, be sure that you’re not blowing the debris into the chimney, skylights, or other vulnerable areas of the roof, as this could cause additional damage.

While removing debris, keep an eye out for small branches and twigs that have fallen off the trees. These should be trimmed to minimize the amount of debris that ends up on your roof, and you can also take preventive measures by installing bird deterrents to discourage pests from nesting on your property.

You should also clear out the gutters and drainage systems. Debris can clog the drains and cause water to pool on the roof, which can erode the surface or cause leaks, and it can even redirect rainwater into other parts of the building, creating more extensive (and costly) problems. A roofer can help you remove debris from the gutters and drainage system and clean it thoroughly to protect your home’s foundation and landscaping. They can also check for signs of a damaged roof and repair any areas that need attention.

Check for Signs of Damage

The first step in roof maintenance after a storm is to check for signs of damage. This is important because if a roof is not in good condition, it can leak and create expensive problems. Look around your yard for shingles that have been blown off the roof, as well as debris that has been left behind from the storm. You should also check for dents in the roof surface, as these can lead to moisture and structural problems.

Next, walk through the house and inspect the ceilings and walls for signs of water damage. This can include discoloration, sagging, or a musty smell that is caused by trapped moisture. Moisture can cause mold, mildew, and other serious problems that require immediate attention. If you notice any of these issues, call a professional to inspect and repair the roof.

Another sign of roof damage is the appearance of water stains on the ceiling or walls. These are often in the shape of a U or V, and they are an indication that moisture is leaking through the roof into the house. If left unchecked, this can lead to expensive and extensive water damage that may require major repairs or replacements.

You should also inspect the soffits, fascias, gutters, and flashing for signs of damage. These are vital sections of the roof that help to keep water away from the home, and they are often vulnerable to damage during storms. If they become damaged, they can clog and overflow, which will damage the underlying structure and lead to leaks.

It is a good idea to check for signs of damage in the attic as well. This is where most of the moisture will accumulate, and if it goes undetected for too long, it can lead to costly damage to insulation, walls, and wood. Inspect for cracks, openings, deterioration, and crazing in the sealant. This can allow moisture to infiltrate the attic, leading to rot and mold, or even collapse the structure.

Finally, it is a good idea to inspect the chimney and vents for signs of damage. This includes a buildup of a soot-like substance known as creosote, which can be harmful to the chimney and the structure of the roof.

Clean the Gutters

Gutter cleaning may seem like a nuisance, but it can prevent serious roof damage and save you money in the long run. When rainwater is unable to flow freely from your roof, it can cause problems such as rotted fascia boards, window and wall damage, mould and damp in the house, as well as water seepage through internal walls. Gutter cleaning ensures that debris is removed from the gutter and downpipe system, and that it is able to drain effectively.

Most experts agree that spring and fall are the best times to clean your gutters, but it is a good idea to inspect them at least once every couple of months. A good way to tell if it is time for a cleaning is to look at the gutters during a rainstorm – if they are full of leaves and debris, then you will need to clear them out.

A simple garden hose can be used to flush out the debris in your gutters, and this should be done regularly. However, it is important to work from one corner of the gutter section to the middle, and not push the gunk further down into your downspouts. It is also a good idea to check your downspouts for clogs, cracks and wear and tear and make any repairs if needed.

If you do decide to take on the job of climbing up on a ladder and clearing out your gutters, it is a good idea to wear comfortable clothing and safety glasses. It is also a good idea to have a spotter on the ground who can help you to stabilize your ladder and hand you tools as necessary. It is also a good idea to use a telescoping ladder with adjustable stabilizing arms, or a Louisville Ladder Stabilizer, to reduce the risk of slipping off and falling.

Another option is to hire a professional gutter cleaning service to complete the task. This can save you the hassle of climbing a ladder and avoids the need to buy or rent equipment. In addition, a professional can also inspect the condition of your gutters and downpipes to ensure they are in good working order.

Schedule an Inspection

A well-functioning roof protects your entire home, and the sooner any problems are detected, the easier it is to fix them. Whether you are experiencing a leaky roof or water stains on the ceiling, you need to take action quickly before the problem escalates. A professional inspection is a great way to get a comprehensive look at the condition of your roof, and it can help you determine the best course of action for repair or replacement.

A qualified roofing inspector will evaluate the overall condition of your roof, looking at everything from the exterior surface to the interior attic space. They will check for any obvious signs of damage and will also look for things like a sagging roof, uneven roof planes, and the condition of the gutter system, fascia, and soffits. Inspectors will also examine the ventilation to make sure there are no issues with moisture or temperature control.

The best time to have a roof inspection is early fall before the rainy season begins. This will allow the inspector to address any issues that might arise and prevent them from becoming more serious in the winter. After a severe storm is another good time to schedule an inspection, as this will allow the inspector to identify any damage that might be caused by hail or wind.

Buying or Selling a Home

When you are considering selling your home, having an inspection done before the sale will ensure that there are no surprises regarding the condition of the roof and will give you an advantage in the marketplace. Likewise, if you are buying a new home or building an addition, a pre-construction inspection is a must.

Most home inspectors aren’t experts in roofing, so if they notice an issue with the roof they will usually recommend that you contact a professional roofer. In the long run, getting regular roof inspections can save you money on repairs and time in addressing potential issues that could turn into major problems down the road. Just think of it as an oil change for your roof.