Roofing is a business that, like all every other business in the world, has its own special lingo. Roofing terms can be perplexing to a bystander and if you’ve never gotten a roofing job done before, you probably haven’t even heard the most basic terms. There’s no need to be embarrassed though. We’ve seen many homeowners in our course of work that have no idea what we’re talking about. If you really want to give your roof the proper attention it deserves, we suggest you learn the secret language. Before you hop on into a contract with your roofer, school yourself with some basic terms used in the roofing business. Here in this article we’re outlining some common terms used frequently by roofers around the country.
Keep reading to familiarize yourself with what you’re getting into. Learning these terms will help you and your roofer be on the same page and it will make voicing your concerns and decisions much easier.
This term is probably not that complicated. Asphalt is a popular material that is used to make shingles in many parts of the world. In fact, it’s the most commonly used roofing material in the US alone. Homeowners choose asphalt shingles because they come at a relatively lower price, have a long lifespan, and are easy to fit and install.
Flashing in a roof is using special materials at the transitional points and valleys of your roof to keep them watertight a well as airtight. Roof flashing makes an integral part of any installation process without which your roof will constantly be exposed to leaks. Flashing is typically done around chimneys, sky lights and other intersections on your roof.
Similar to the gutters in your bathroom or your lawn, roof gutters have the purpose of draining water and keeping it from pooling on the top. It makes a water channel through which rain water can pour down. Gutters commonly get clogged if you don’t maintain your roof and this can cause water damage to your roof.
Granules are tiny particles on the surface of the asphalt shingles. They are typically made up of ceramic coated crushed rock. Granules enhance the appearance of the shingles, improve fire resistance of your roof and protect it from the sun. These granules can also be chipped off if your shingles are damaged and they can clog the gutter resulting in water damage.
This is the part of your roof that projects out over the wall edges of your house.
In roofing, truss is a specific piece of material that adds extra support to the rafters.
Ridge is an angle formed at the point where two roof planes (sloping) intersect. This is an external angle.
Valleys in your roof are the dips formed when two downward sloping sections intersect. They typically create a V-shaped area and require flashing to keep them watertight.
Fascia is a layer of boards that is fitted on top of the rafters for an extra boost of protection. Fascia can also be fitted on the walls.
Underneath the layer of shingles is the underlayment which also serves to provide extra protection and strength to your roof.
Vents on the roof are similar to the vents installed inside your home. The purpose of a vent is to ventilate and provide fresh air to your home. This is usually done through the roof deck but any additional outlet of air can also serve as a vent.
The dormer is what is installed on the upper edges of your windows that is part of the projecting slant of the roof. It adds extra protection.