Sometimes roofers will use confusing, specialized terms.  It’s a good idea for the consumer to have at least a basic understanding of those terms, so that you can not only understand a prospective roofer, but you can interview them and ensure they know what they are talking about.

Here are some terms to know when you talk to your roofer:

Algae Discoloration: A type of roof discoloration caused by algae, also called fungus growth.

Blisters: Bubbles that may appear on the surface of asphalt roofing after installation.

Asphalt Shingle: a shingle manufactured by coating a reinforcing material (felt or fibrous glass mat) with asphalt and having mineral granules on the side exposed to the weather.

Caulk: To fill a joint in order to prevent leaks.

Counter Flashing: That portion of the flashing attached to a vertical surface to prevent water from migrating behind the base flashing.

Deck or Decking: The structural “skin” of a roof over which roofing in applied. Most new homes have decking made of plywood.

Flashing: Pieces of metal or roll roofing used to prevent seepage of water into a building around any intersection or projection in a roof such as vent pipes, chimneys, adjoining walls, dormers and valleys.

Gable Roof: A type of roof containing sloping planes of the same pitch on each side of the ridge. A gable roof typically contains a gable at each end.

Granules: Ceramic-coated colored crushed rock that is applied to the exposed surface of asphalt roofing products.

Gutter: The trough that channels water from the eaves to the downspouts.

Overhang: That portion of the roof structure that extends beyond the exterior walls of a building.

Parapet: A low protective wall that extends above the roofline or balcony for support.

Pitch: Also known as “slope”, pitch is the measure of how “steep” a roof is.

Re-roofing: Installing a new roof system on a building that is not new.

Shading: Slight differences in shingle color that may occur as a result of normal manufacturing operations.

Step flashing: Flashing application method used where a vertical surface meets a sloping roof plane.

Valley: The internal angle formed by the intersection of two sloping roof planes to provide water runoff.

Vent: Any outlet for air that protrudes through the roof deck such as a pipe or stack. Any device installed on the roof, gable or soffit for the purpose of ventilating the underside of the roof deck.

Here’s to informed decisions about your home.

Tom Leach Roofing