The main purpose of a roof is to keep the elements out of your home. Despite the rain, snow, sleet, and wind, you’ll stay warm and dry with a good roof over your head. Most people don’t give their roof a second thought until it fails to do its job. A few drips here and there and it becomes a big problem. A roof is much more complex than a layer or two of shingles nailed together. In fact, most roofs aren’t simply an uninterrupted plane. There are valleys, ridges, holes cut out for vents, skylights, chimneys, and more. These areas are under additional strain in inclement weather and rain because the water channels into these areas and pushes hard on these locations. They become more vulnerable. For this reason, roof flashing for weatherproofing is critical to ensure your roof lasts for years to come.
Why is Roof Flashing Important for Homeowners?
When it comes to flashing repair, counter flashing roof, and metal flashing, it’s all comes down to weatherproofing the joints of your roof. The materials used in flashing are typically metal flashing including aluminum and galvanized steel although zinc and copper are also occasionally used. Beyond metal flashing, other flexible synthetics can be used such as acrylic, butyl rubber and rubberized asphalt. Depending on the circumstance, any of these materials can be placed under the shingle and over the joint. They are bent and cut into shape and secured to the roof with nails or roofing staples. The exact methods of flashing or metal flashing change depending on the joints the roof flashing is attaching.
Roof Flashing Types and Installation Locations
Roof flashing occurs whenever the roof is broken in any given spot with the potential for water to seep in. Most roofs cannot get away with flashing only where two planes of the roof meet. In most cases, they will have multiple gaps due to factors such as the chimney, skylights, and kitchen vents. The most common locations for roof flashing and roof flashing repair differ from location to location.
Two Types of Roof Flashing for the Chimney
The frontand back of the chimney uses continuous flashing. However, on the sides, the step method is used for installation. This means that L-shaped sections of flashing are layered. These pieces are as wide as the length of the shingles. The shingles with angles of flashing form steps by resting against the side of the chimney.
Valley or Ridge
Every roof has a valley or ridge, which makes roof flashing tricky. Whenever these two major plans meet, it needs to be capped. This long line joint is created in locations such as the ridgeline of the roof or a valley from a porch extension. In these cases, they are always on the bottom side of the shingle.
Vents from the kitchen, laundry room, or elsewhere require their own flashing cover. This is typically installed over the vent and the shingles are then cut to fit. The venting pipes are typically circular, which is why they need specific roof flashing.
Skylights and Dormers
Similar to vents, skylights and dormers are large box designs. That means the front is a continuous roof flashing. Similarly, step flashing is used on the sides of dormers while skylights have very intentionally cut roof flashing for the corners. This keeps things extra durable and sealed tight so there are no leaks.
The last line of flashing is where the roof ends and paint begins. A cusp goes around the roof’s perimeter to prevent water from seeping into the overhang.
Roof flashing doesn’t have to be complicated. If you still have questions about roof flashing or want to get started with weatherproofing, flashing repair or replacement, a Fairmarket contractor can help you. They can offer an estimate and help repair your roof professionally and at an affordable rate.