Home Improvement

The Different Parts of a Roof and Their Functions

There’s more to roofs than the top covering that you see outside your home. It consists of materials necessary to support it on the walls and protect your home against sunlight, rain, snow, wind, extreme temperature, and other elements.

In this article, we are breaking down the different parts of a roof and their functions.

What Makes Up a Roof?

There’s just as many different parts of a roof as there are different types of roofs—gable, fat, hip, shed, mansard, etc. But, for the most part, a typical roof will consist of the following:

Attic – this is the space found directly under your roof, often used to store seasonal items such as travel luggage, holiday décor, and hobby gear. Unless converted into a room, the attic is otherwise a room that is rarely used and therefore will require proper ventilation.

Decking – also called sheathing, this is often made from ½-inch plywood. It is used to reinforce the roofing structure. It closes gaps and provides a fully sealed shelter. It also functions as a nail bed for the shingles.

Eaves – these are the lowest point or edges of a roof, usually overhanging the exterior walls of your home. They consist of fascia, soffits, and drip edges. It’s where the gutter is connected to the roof. You would see these in mansard-type roofing, gambrel, gable, and others.

Fascia – these are all the boards that run along the eaves. It is attached to the ends of the rafters and sits underneath the eaves, connecting the rafters and trusses. You would see them from the ground and in case of damage, you would easily see it.

Flashing – this is the sealant that connects the joints of your roof to keep it from leaking. It can be made of galvanised steel, aluminium, or plastic, making them either rigid or flexible. You would find it at the base of the chimney, in valleys, walls, roof vents, and plumbing vents.

Gutter – also called a rain gutter or eavestrough, a gutter is the plastic or metal trough that channels the water away from the edge of your roof. It is connected to a downspout, which drains the water down and away from your property. It also serves an essential role in rainwater harvesting.

Ridge – this is the horizontal line that forms where two roof planes meet. This is the peak of your roof.

Saddle – a structure found behind the higher side of a chimney or other similar projections from the roof. This helps divert rainwater off and into the drainage.

Shingles – shingles sit above the underlayment and are nailed onto your roof. In many cases, roofs feature asphalt shingles, which are extremely durable against many kinds of weather. They come in a wide range of colours, too! Other options for shingles include wood, slate, and clay.

Soffits – when the eaves extend past your exterior wall, it will have an underside which is called a soffit. Often, soffits have built-in vent openings to provide ventilation for the attic space. They can also be perforated or paired with ridge vents for adequate ventilation.

Underlayment – this is installed under a roof deck, before the shingles. It serves as a water-resistant layer for your roofing system.

Many other components make up a roof, but this should be enough to give you some basic information on how roofs work and how you can maintain them. Learning about the anatomy of your roof can also help you make an informed decision when it’s time to restore or replace it. To preserve the quality of your roofing system, request for Sydney gutter cleaning and roof repairs Baulkham Hills from licensed specialists. Only then can you ensure that you’re getting the job done right and you’re paying for excellent workmanship.

Make sure that you get in touch with your trusted roofing contractor to discuss your needs.