Need A New Roof? Get Familiar With These Terms

Have you been talking to roofing contractors about replacing your existing roof, but feel a bit confused by the terms that they are using? It will help to know these common terms so you understand what is going on.


Roof sheathing, also known as roof decking, is the component of the roof that all of the roofing material is secured to. It could be made out of wooden planks, OSB (oriented strand board), or plywood. If you are replacing a roof, the contractor is going to want to tear off the existing roof so that they can inspect and replace the sheathing if necessary. 


The roof underlayment is a felt or synthetic material that is placed directly on top of the sheathing. The purpose of an underlayment is to make sure that water cannot penetrate the material and get the sheathing wet. Consider it a waterproof barrier for your roof.

Ice and Water Shield

There are places on your roof that are more susceptible to water damage, and an ice and water shield will be placed in these areas. It's commonly placed in the valley of a roof where all of the water runs together and flows down the surface. An ice and water shield also helps prevent ice dams from forming and prevents the roof from leaking


The facet of a roof is essentially a side of the roof. If you have a simple home with a gable roof that has a single peak, then your roof will have two facets. This is important because more facets will result in a more complicated roof installation. You may need more ice and water shield because there are more valleys on the roof. 

Eaves And Rakes

Every edge of the roof is considered an eave or a rake. A rake is a fancy way of naming the edge of a roof that is along a slope. Meanwhile, an eave is the edge of the roof that runs horizontally where the gutters are located. 


Your roof flashing is a metal material with the purpose of directing water away from things that penetrate your roof. A roofing contractor will need to install step, counter, and apron flashing material on your roof to make sure that water cannot penetrate the surface. In addition, flashing can be made out of steel, copper, or aluminum material. 

Don't be afraid to ask your roofing contractor if they are using a term that you do not understand. For more information, contact a roofing company, such as Kerry Roofing LLC.