Roof flashing is an important part of your roof. The right flashing will protect your home and keep your roof safe from water damage and leaks. There are many types of roof flashing. You may choose to incorporate each of these types in your roof or a combination of these types to adequately protect your home from water damage and leaks. At Elevated Roofing, we can help you understand the types of roof flashing that are available and how it may protect your home from damage.
Types of Roof Flashing for Your Home
Common types of roof flashing include:
- Continuous flashing
- Drip edges
- Valley flashing
- Vent pipe flashing
- Step flashing
- Base flashing
- Cap flashing
- Counter flashing
- Chimney flashing
- Saddle flashing
- Skylight flashing
- Kick-out flashing
Here’s a closer look at each.
Continuous flashing, also known as “apron flashing,” is a long, single piece of metal that directs water away from critical areas, typically where a vertical surface meets a sloped roof. This type of flashing is used to protect the joints between the roof and walls or dormers, ensuring that water flows down the roof and into the gutters without seeping into the structure.
Drip edges are installed at the edges of the roof, primarily along the eaves and rakes. Their purpose is to guide water away from the fascia and protect the underlying roofing components. Drip edges are crucial for preventing water damage and ensuring that runoff is effectively channeled into the gutters.
Valley flashing is used in the valleys of the roof where two slopes meet. This area is prone to collecting water and debris, making it a critical point for potential leaks. Valley flashing helps to channel water safely off the roof, protecting these vulnerable intersections from water penetration.
Vent Pipe Flashing
Also known as “pipe boots,” vent pipe flashing is used to seal around plumbing vents. It prevents water from entering the home through the holes cut for vent pipes. This type of flashing is typically a combination of a metal base with a rubber seal that fits snugly around the pipe.
Step flashing is used where a roof meets a vertical wall or siding. It consists of a series of rectangular pieces that are layered with each shingle course and the side of the wall, creating a stair-step pattern. This design ensures that water is directed away from the wall and back onto the roof.
Base flashing is part of a two-part flashing system, commonly used around chimneys or roof penetrations. It ensures that the area where the roof meets a vertical structure is fully protected from water ingress. Base flashing is the lower piece that directs water onto the roof covering.
Cap flashing, or counter flashing, is the upper piece in a two-part flashing system. It is installed above base flashing and is designed to protect the upper edge of the base flashing. Cap flashing helps to ensure that water flows down and away from the underlying structure.
Counter flashing serves a similar purpose as cap flashing, providing an additional layer of protection over base flashing. It is often used on walls or chimneys, where it is embedded into the masonry to prevent water from getting behind the base flashing.
Chimney flashing is specifically designed to prevent water from entering the home around the chimney. It usually involves a combination of step flashing, base flashing, and cap or counter flashing to fully seal the area where the chimney penetrates the roof.
Saddle flashing, also known as cricket flashing, is used on the high side of a chimney or roof penetration. It is designed to divert water around these structures, preventing pooling and potential leakage.
Skylight flashing is custom-designed to fit around skylights. It ensures a watertight seal between the skylight frame and the roof, preventing leaks. Proper installation is crucial for the effectiveness of skylight flashing.
Kick-out flashing is a small but critical piece of flashing that diverts water away from the wall and into the gutter. It is installed at the point where a roof edge meets a sidewall, preventing water from running down the wall and potentially causing damage.
Flashing helps direct water away from the cracks and fixtures in your roof and home. With the right flashing, your home will stay dry, and your roof will last longer. Determining the right combination of flashing for your home is not easy. That is why most homeowners turn to professionals for help. At Elevated Roofing, our team can examine your roof and ensure your roof’s flashing protects your home.
What Happens If Your Flashing Fails?
Flashing is a critical component in maintaining the integrity of your roof, and its failure can lead to a host of problems, often resulting in significant damage to your home. When flashing fails, it no longer serves its primary purpose of directing water away from vulnerable areas of the roof and preventing it from seeping into the structure. Here are some of the key issues that can arise from failed flashing:
- Water leaks: The most immediate and noticeable consequence of failing flashing is water leakage. Water can seep through the gaps created by damaged or deteriorated flashing, leading to leaks that can damage ceilings, walls, insulation, and even the home’s interior.
- Mold and mildew growth: Persistent moisture from leaks provides a perfect environment for mold and mildew to thrive. This not only causes a musty odor and unsightly stains but can also lead to health issues, especially for individuals with allergies or respiratory problems.
- Structural damage: Over time, the continuous exposure to water can weaken the structural components of your home, including the roof deck, framing, and foundation. This can lead to costly repairs and, in severe cases, may compromise the safety of the structure.
- Decreased insulation efficiency: Water intrusion can saturate the insulation, significantly reducing its effectiveness. This can lead to increased energy costs as your heating and cooling systems work harder to maintain comfortable indoor temperatures.
- Roof material deterioration: Continuous water exposure can accelerate the deterioration of roofing materials. Shingles, tiles, or other roofing materials around the failed flashing can become damaged, leading to a need for premature roof repairs or replacement.
- Aesthetic damage: Apart from the structural and functional issues, failed flashing can also affect the aesthetic appeal of your home. Water stains, peeling paint, and other signs of water damage can diminish the overall appearance and curb appeal of your property.
Addressing flashing issues promptly is crucial to prevent these problems. Regular roof inspections can help identify flashing failures early, and professional repairs can restore the protective barrier to keep your home safe and dry. Elevated Roofing offers expert services to assess and repair any flashing issues, ensuring your roof remains in top condition.
Related: What to expect from a roof estimate
At Elevated Roofing, we go one step further and install an ice and water membrane wherever water may travel or gather. This ice and water membrane even self-seals if a nail punctures through it. For example, we install this in valleys and around penetrations, flashings, chimneys, vents and pipes.
Contact Our Experienced Roofing Professionals
Do you have questions about your roof’s flashing and its integrity? If so, give us a call. We offer a free, no-obligation roof assessment. Our professional Frisco-based team will come to your home and help you understand your roofing options. We will provide a detailed assessment of your roof’s condition with a photo inspection report so you can make the roofing choice that is best for you and your family. Call today or contact us online to get started.