Understanding The Roofing SystemBy Stacy Mellete
The roof is one of the most important parts of your home. It provides comfort, security, and protection from the elements. Your roofing system can also significantly contribute to your home’s curb appeal and property value.
But, how well do you know your roofing system? Are you familiar with its basic components and their functions? Do you know the difference between a roof and a roofing system? Stay tuned to learn more about roofs and roofing systems.
Hello everyone and welcome again to Affordable Roofing Systems. Before we proceed, let me just give you some background about our team. Affordable Roofing Systems is an award-winning roofer in Tampa Bay. We’ve been in the industry for MORE THAN THREE GENERATIONS!
As one of the leading roofers in the country, we want to help everyone make informed decisions when it comes to roofing.
So, let’s talk about a roof versus a roofing system. Is there really a difference?
Well, when people talk about a roof they often have in mind just the outer covering of shingles, and the first thing to understand is that a roof is more than just shingles nailed to plywood. That’s because shingles are actually part of a roofing system that includes structural framing, roof covering, and ventilation.
These are interconnected, so a problem in one area can affect the performance of the entire roofing system. Informed homeowners look beyond the outer layer of shingles to address the system as a whole.
First, let's discuss the system's structural base.
The basic “skeletal structure” of the roofing system is made up of roof trusses or rafters that support the roof from below. Plywood or OSB decking spans these trusses, forming a platform that can support the load of the roof.
Damage from water, mildew, mold, termites, or heat can weaken these and other parts of your roof’s structure, making it ineffective and unsafe. Regular maintenance can identify and address these problems before they get worse.
Now, let's talk about the most visible part of the roofing system, the Roof Covering.
The roof covering is what most people think of as the roof. But even this part of the system is more than just shingles. It is composed of layers of roofing material that prevent water infiltration. There are several types of underlayment that can be used between the decking and the shingles, including specialized underlayments for areas that are more vulnerable.
Shingles act as the primary roof covering and are installed in overlapping layers to protect the structure and help ensure proper water-shedding. Hip and ridge cap shingles are designed to be installed over vulnerable areas of the roof to provide additional protection.
Worn or damaged shingles can allow water to infiltrate and damage the underlying roof structure, as well as the interior of the property. This is why timely maintenance and repairs are essential to the health of your roof covering and your overall roofing system.
The final part to consider is the roof's ventilation.
The health of your roof requires a balanced system of intake and exhaust vents that allow air to flow continuously through the attic space to exhaust excess heat and moisture. Excess heat or moisture can damage your roof shingles and even the structural framing of the roof, so proper ventilation is critical. Ventilation affects not only your roofing system but also your home’s cooling and heating system. With proper roof ventilation, you can improve the comfort of your home while saving money on electric bills.
As you can see, maintaining your roof as an interconnected system can prevent problems and maximize its lifespan and performance.
This understanding will also help you make key decisions about repairs, re-roofing, and roof replacement.
Re-roofing is the fastest way to restore the appearance of a worn or aging roof covering. It involves partial or complete replacement of shingles and underlayment to help prevent leaks.
Roof repairs can address minor problems in any area of the roof system, including the covering, decks, ventilation, leak barriers, ridge caps, eaves, fascia, and more.
Roof replacement may be the wiser investment for roofs with extensive damage or roofs near the end of their expected lifespan.
If you see signs of damage or simply want to assess or maintain the condition of your roofing system, the trusted roofing professionals at Affordable Roofing Systems can help. We understand your roof as an integrated system and we have the experience, expertise, and tools to deliver the best service at an affordable price.
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This is Affordable Roofing Systems and we hope to see you again next time!