What is Roof Flashing?

roof flashing

So, what is roof flashing?

What are those strips of metal on a roof? That is called roof flashing. Is roof flashing necessary? Yes, absolutely, roof flashing is especially important!  These thin strips metal material, typically galvanized steel, are installed by the roofing contractor in critical areas.

Without roof flashing where the roof and walls meet, or around chimney, skylight, or vents, water would begin slowly dripping down into those crevices. Once water gets into your home from the roof, it keeps trickling its way down inside the walls. Then you have mildew, mold, and a host of other problems starting.

Does flashing go over or under shingles?

Headwall flashing should expand up behind the exterior wall and down over the roofing material. Roof flashing should be installed sot that it overlaps the roof-covering material, with the exception of asphalt shingle roofs. For reasons of aesthetic, the part of the headwall roof flashing that extends over asphalt shingles is frequently covered with a row of asphalt shingle tabs. Examples of where roof flashing is installed:

  • The roof plane meets a vertical surface like a dormers or walls.
  • Roof flashing is installed around roof features, like chimneys, vents, skylights.

Should flashing be caulked?

During your monthly walk around your home, inspecting the house for issues, you notice some roof flashing is sticking up or missing.  Instead of calling a professional roofing contractor for something so minor, can you get up and put it back in place with caulk?

Some roof flashings are built into items. These areas, you can do a temporary fix yourself of have a roofing contractor do it if roof tops aren’t your thing. However, this is only a temporary repair, and any roofing contractor that knows How to install roof flashing will not tell you that is good enough.

One place that you should never try to caulk yourself of have a contractor tell you that is sufficient is the  space above the window  between the flashing and the siding. This isn’t roof flashing but is just as important in keeping you home dry from water seeping into the walls. This flashing is referred to as drip cap, drip flashing, or head flashing. And provides a drain for water that would otherwise find its way behind the wall. The theory is pretty much if there is a way for water to get into something, it will find it and you will have major problems soon.

Do you need roof flashing

Roof flashing an unrecognized, unsung hero of rooftops! It works in conjunction with roofing felt and keeps water out from under the shingles. Flashing comes in a variety of metals, all thin strips, mostly galvanized steel. Some homes will upgrade to copper or stainless steel.

Imagine a world without roof flashing if you will.  One good rainy season and water will eventually begin leaking through the roof, then all havoc follows inside your home. The attic will be the first to rot from mildew and mold, then the ceilings below will be damaged, and all the roofing materials are damaged. This includes the roof decking and underlayment.

Is roof flashing required by code?

There may be a housing district in a city or town somewhere that doesn’t require roof flashing, but in most cities or town, even states, will require roof flashing.  If not the entity where your home is built, the insurance company that you have your homeowner’s insurance will require roof flashing.

Most homeowner’s insurance companies will have an adjustor come inspect the house before issued the policy. If the adjustor finds damaged or missing flashing, they will state this on their inspection and it will have to be repaired or replaced before your homeowner’s insurance is effective.

What is the best roof flashing?

We’ve chatted a bit about roof flashing and where it is needed, and why  We have only hinted at the types of metal though, so here we offer information on the three types of metal roof flashing:

  • Aluminum: This is a  hearty and versatile material that is appropriate for various locations where flashing is needed. Such as the roof valleys, where the roof meets a wall, about the chimney,  and more. It is available in pre-shape, sheets, or rolls, and customized if needed. Aluminum roof flashing is moderately priced and around corners and conformed to angles.
  • Copper: A higher-priced product that is an exceptionally durable roof flashing option. A resilient in all situations in the valleys, about the chimneys, at the wall intersections, and more. Copper can be fabricated to meet the needs for custom shapes and is available in an option of lead-coating, great for marine areas.
  • Stainless Steel: An extremely resilient roof flashing material, ideal for harshest environments. Considered a premium product that is on the higher end of pricing, comes in a 18 gauge and 24 gauge.

Why get roof flashing replaced?

Some kinds of roof flashing, like, step flashing, are not always reusable because detaching them from the roof shingles usually bends or dents the roof flashing. Most roofing contractors will replace all new flashing when installing a new roof or making repairs.  If they don’t list that is the estimate, inquire and insist they do. There is the chance that the roofing material manufacturer won’t honor their warranty and it could negate your homeowner’s insurance policy too. Need help with roof flashing in , LA? Call 877-406-7663 today.

roof with hidden flashing

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