How important is roof flashing?

How important is roof flashing?

For your DeKalb home's roof, there's almost nothing more important than roof flashing. Underlayment and shingles are also important, of course, but roof flashing plays an all-too-critical role in your roof's health, as well as the health of your home. Without effective flashing, you could end up dealing with significant, costly problems.

A world without flashing

The overlapping shingles of a shingled roof prevent water from leaking through, and the shingles act as a barrier from the elements, too. Without flashing, however, homeowners would be dealing with perpetually leaking roofs, particularly at the edges of the roof where it meets the chimney. Eventually, water that leaked through the roof would wreak havoc inside the home, causing rot to the attic structure, mold problems and damaged ceilings.

The elements pose another problem for construction materials. As the temperature and humidity rise and fall, the materials respond, expanding and contracting — and creating gaps where water can penetrate. In places where the continuously overlapping blanket of shingles ends, there has to be a way to "seal" the joints to prevent water problems. This is where roof flashing comes in.

Flashing to the rescue

Flashing is pieces of metal, copper or stainless steel that connect the underlayment and shingles to the intersection of other components of the roof. The chimney is one very important area that interrupts the flow of the roof's shingles. It is vital to have a remedy to prevent water from infiltrating around the chimney where the roofing ends. Other areas of importance include the roof's hip (or the area where the two sides of the roof meet at the top) and the valley (where the downward slope of the roof sections adjoin). Another area of the roof where flashing comes in handy is around dormers, skylights or vent stacks.

With flashing in place, roofing contractors can make the roof's joints and intersections watertight, preventing moisture from penetrating through the roof, without compromising the natural expanding and contracting that takes place.

If you need help with a new roof installation or you're concerned about the condition of your existing roof's flashing, contact Findlay Roofing today! We're happy to send one of our experts to your DeKalb-area home to inspect your roof and offer recommendations.

Image source: Flickr

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