Orange County Roofing Inc protects a home against rain, snow, sunlight, extreme temperatures, and wind. Choosing the best roof for your house depends on aesthetics, budget, and how long you want to keep your home.
Sheet metal is a ubiquitous construction material, and its manufacturing process is fairly simple. It involves melting the chosen metal, pouring it into a mold, and pickling, rolling, and annealing it.
The roof of a building protects against rain, snow, sunlight, and temperature extremes. Its structure may take on various forms depending upon practical and aesthetic considerations, and the underlying frame for the roof build-up may be made from timber or other materials. Multiple construction systems can be added to the top of the roof frame, including trusses, space frames, barrel vaults, and braced domes.
The main component of a roof’s framing is the rafters or trusses. These are usually cut on-site from lumber such as 2x10s or pre-fabricated in a factory and craned into place.
Rafters are a group of sloped structural beams that extend from wall beams on both sides and meet at the ridge board. These are the primary load-bearing elements of a roof, and their failure could cause the rest of the frame to collapse. As its name suggests, a ridge board sits on top of the rafters and creates the ridge line of a roof.
Various rafter types are used to support the roof, and these include the truss, which is commonly used in residential construction because of its ability to achieve long spans; the raised heel truss, which consists of slopes on all four sides that rise to meet at the center; and the open scissor truss, which produces magazine-worthy vaulted ceilings.
Another element of a roof’s framing is the joists or girders, which run from the bottom of each rafter to the wall on either side—these help distribute the roof’s weight and provide support for walls, gutters, and venting.
The joists or rafters are joined by purlins, which run horizontally under the rafters and connect them to wall beams. The roof sheathing, which encloses the entire roof frame, may be made from plywood or OSB, although older houses often have tongue and groove or narrow 1-by-skip sheathing boards of sawn lumber.
Roof sheathing serves several functions, including providing a nail bed for roofing materials to insulate the roof and prevent moisture penetration. Roof sheathing is normally installed before the roof shingles are put in.
Shingles are the roof’s outer layer that protects against rain, snow, sunlight, wind, and other weather conditions. They’re designed to be durable and offer long-lasting protection when placed in an overlapping pattern that helps keep water from seeping into the home. They can be made of various materials, but asphalt shingles are the most common and a good choice for many homeowners.
They come in two varieties: traditional or three-tab shingles and architectural shingles. The former are thinner and cut to look like bricks for a more uniform appearance on your roof, while the latter are thicker and have a more natural texture that can add to your house’s curb appeal. Architectural shingles also last longer than three-tab shingles and may increase your home’s value when it comes time to sell.
Roofing professionals can also install shingles in various patterns and colors to complement different types of homes. Even shingle products are available that reflect light or emit heat to help reduce cooling costs, such as IKO’s solar reflective and thermal emissive shingles.
Another important consideration when selecting shingles is the manufacturer’s warranty. The length of a warranty can vary from 20 years to a lifetime. While most shingle manufacturers have a standard warranty, it’s best to talk with your roofing contractor to learn more about the specific coverage.
While a new roof is a major investment, it will protect your home for decades. Regular inspections and maintenance can extend the life of your shingles. Look for signs that your shingles are beginning to wear out, such as curling edges and losing their mineral surface.
Leaks often occur along the eaves, where the shingles meet the edge of the wall. Several factors, including improper installation, damaged shingles, improper decking, or deficient attic ventilation, can cause them. If left unchecked, leaks can damage the interior of your home and lead to wood rot, mold growth, pest infestation, and other problems. If you suspect a leak, contact your roofing professional for a thorough roof evaluation.
While shingles are the most familiar component of your roof, there are two more crucial elements to understand: underlayment and flashing. Both play critical roles in preventing water leakage and providing a protective foundation for your shingles.
Underlayment is a fabric-like barrier, traditionally made of asphalt-saturated felt but now often available as a synthetic material. It’s applied directly to the decking and serves several functions: it protects the underlying sheathing from any resin the decking may release, provides a nailbed for the shingles, and offers some fire resistance. In addition, it prevents what is known as ” picture framing,” the slight movement of the wood panels that make up the decking that creates bumps and disturbs the flat surface needed for proper water resistance.
Roofers will also install a waterproofing membrane over the underlayment, creating a second layer that helps prevent moisture infiltration. This is especially important around the chimney, dormers, and any other nooks and crannies of your roof that could allow water to seep in.
Flashing is installed along the edges of your roof to prevent water infiltration. This consists of strips of weather-resistant material installed in key areas, such as valleys and the top of any dormers. This reroutes any water under the shingles and protects against potential damage from ice dams or heavy rain.
Many different types of underlayment are available, including Oriented Strand Board (OSB), plywood, and even foam and cork. OSB and plywood are thicker sheets of engineered wood, usually 19/32- to 1 1/8-inch thick, that are part of the floor system of your home. They’re commonly used in place of traditional lumber and provide the structure and rigidity of your home.
Foam and cork underlayments don’t adhere to the subfloor and “float” on the surface. They offer a slight buffer between the subfloor and floor covering and smooth out imperfections, such as barely protruding screw heads or knot holes. They also add a layer of softness to the flooring and help mitigate sound.
Another type of underlayment is rubber, which is highly recommended for floors. It’s easy to install, has an outstanding sound suppression rating, and can be made from recycled materials. It’s a great choice for any flooring and works well as a thermal barrier between the floor and your home’s foundation, helping to reduce energy costs.
Flashing is a thin strip of impervious material that helps waterproof joints and protrusions in roofing materials. It can be made from various metals, including copper and aluminum. It is usually fabricated by a large clamping jaw tool called a brake, which feeds sheet metal from a coil and bends it to a shape to fit around the roof protrusion or joint. Flashing is often installed with shingle or metal roof underlayment and roofing materials to ensure a leak-free seal.
Different types of flashing depend on where they are installed and the type of roof they cover. Most are made of metal but can also be made of other durable materials such as lead or plastics. Roof flashing is installed in areas prone to leaks, such as roof valleys, where two downward slopes meet, and roof penetrations like chimneys, vent pipes, and skylights. It also protects walls and windows intersecting with the roof and any projections on a building’s exterior.
Wall flashing is typically installed along the sides of walls, where they meet a roof or another wall or at window and door openings in a wall. It is designed to prevent water leaks that can cause damage, such as rot, mildew, and pest infestation. It is sometimes installed on a shingled roof, but it can also be used on other types of roofs.
Most roof flashing is fabricated from either galvanized steel or aluminum, and it’s bent to a specific size and shape to cover the joint. It is installed between the underlayment and the shingles on a shingled roof or top of the panels of a metal roof. It is then sealed with a caulking compound or roofing membrane to create a waterproof barrier.
There are a few roof flashing types, but step flashing is the most common. This is a series of metal flashing pieces installed in steps along a roof penetration, such as a chimney, overlapping each other to create a watertight seal. A counterflashing piece is installed on the opposite side of the penetration to provide extra protection and support.