Roofing Terms

Asphalt Plastic Cement
Asphalt based sealant material, used to seal roofing materials and cover exposed nails. Otherwise known as mastic, blackjack, or roof tar.

Base flashing
A length of metal bent to seal and waterproof where a vertical wall meets the roofline.

Blistering
Bubbles appearing on the roofing materials, usually due to moisture. In shingles blisters are caused by either moisture under the material, or moisture trapped inside of the material.

Blow-offs
When shingles are subjected to high winds and are forced off of the roof deck. This is the most common cause for repairs.

Buckling
Wrinkling or rippling affects in the shingles or their underlayments.

Closed Cut Valleys
A valley installation method where one course of shingles is completely covered by the opposing course from the other roof face, then the top layer is cut to match the valley lines. This is the most common valley installation.

Counter Flashing
A length of metal used to seal and waterproof where a transition between a wall and a flat surface. Usually used during skylight installation to seal the top of the curb. (wooden frame)

Cricket
A peaked water diverter usually installed behind chimneys to divert water away from the back of the projection, as to not allow for standing water.

Cupping
When shingles are installed and create a cupping, or a curled appearance. Usually due to a product defect but could also be a result of installation error. Also known as fish-mouthing.

Dormer
A raised roof that extends out over another roofline, that most resembles a standard doghouse, which is also a name for it.

Drip edge Flashing
A length of metal bent to seal and waterproof the edge or “eaves” where roofing material is installed. It also aids in directing water into the eaves trough as it extends from the eaves into the gutter.

Eaves
The roof edge from the fascia to the house (structures) outside wall. The first three feet up from the edge of the roof  is usually considered the Eave.

Fasteners
Nails or staples used to secure the roofing material, underlayment’s, and flashings.

Gable Roof
This is the most traditional roof style. Two peaked rooflines at meet at a ridge of equal length.

Granules
Crushed rocks that are coated in ceramic and placed on the asphalt shingle during manufacturing. They act as both the color, and the UV protect ant for the shingles.

Hand-sealing
The method of installing shingles on steep slopes, and high wind areas. Asphalt plastic cement is used to adhere the shingles manually, it is also referred to as “hand-tabbing.”

Hip Roof
A roof with four sides coming together at a peak and four separate hip legs. Also known as a cottage-style roof.

Ice Dam
When a snow load melts and then refreezes on the eave edge. Ice dams force water to back up under the shingles, sometimes resulting in leakage. The major cause of Ice damming is heat loss from inside the home, along with not clearing

Laminated Shingles
Shingles made from two separate pieces that are laminated together. Also referred to as a Arcitectual shingles. The mostly widely used style of shingles today.

Low Slopes
A roof pitch that is lower than a 4/12 (4 inches of decline to every 12 inches of roof face) Special installation instructions must be followed on pitches 2/12-4/12. Asphalt shingles cannot be installed on slopes lower than a 2/12.

Mansard
A roof face that is almost vertical. Sometimes referred to as a “wall.”

Nail-Pop
When a nail is not fully driven into the roof deck. Usually from a shingling gun malfunction. Also known as “flashers.”

Open Valley
A valley installation that uses a metal “valley pan” down the center of the valley. The shingles are then cut back from either side of the center of the valley to expose the metal flashing to allow for drainage and to help again blockages (this is mostly prominent in cedar-shake applications.)

Over-driven
When a nail or fastener has been driven through the material, usually from a shingling gun malfunction. Also known as a “Blow through.”

Rake Edge
The vertical edge on a gable roof.

Saw Teeth
The exposed portion of double thickness on the shingle that emulates the cedar shake-like appearance. Also known as dragon teeth.

Sealant strip
Sealant installed on the back-side of the shingles that is activated by heat and sunlight to seal the shingles to each other.

Starter Strip
A manufactured material used as the first course of the roofing system. It lines the eaves and gable ends to act as a sealant and guild line to frame out the perimeter of the roof. This is made from the same material as the shingles.

Step Flashing
Pieces of metal flashing bent on a 90 degree angle, used where vertical wall lines meet the roof line on a vertical plane. They are interwoven between shingle courses to act as a waterproofing and to seal the wall to roof deck transition.

Tear-off
The term used to describe the removing of the existing shingles, or roofing materials before the new roof can be installed.

Underlayments
Usually a rolled product comprised of either an asphalt-based, or a synthetic-based material used under the main roof system to act as added protection.

Valley
A roof area where two adjoining rooflines of varying pitches or the same pitch, intersect to form a “V” like shape.

Warranty
The written promise to the owner of the property for the roofing materials, and any material or installation problems that may arise in the future. The material warranty is to be written by the manufacturer of the product and the labour warranty is from the company that provided the service.

Woven Valleys
The method of installing a valley where shingles from either side of the adjoining sides in the valley overlap each other and are interwoven.