Very few homeowners hardly know anything about their roofs beyond the color and material. However, if you want to have the same roof over your head for decades, you should consider learning more about it, its components, and its function. This way, it will be easier to maintain and repair a roof when you understand its composition and each part's role. Here are the four main components of a residential roof and their importance.
Every part of a construction project must have a foundation. In this case, your roof's decking is the foundation that determines the strength of the entire structure. You will find that most homes have either a plank or sheet decking. The plank option comes from elongated wooden boards, while the sheet option is from flat sheets of wood or oriental strand boards. You must note that the decking determines the lifespan of the roof. If it is weak, rotten, or damaged, you cannot install fresh roofing material on it without risking a future roof collapse. Hence, it is advisable to replace the damaged decking before redesigning the rest of the roof's components.
A Shield Against Ice and Water
Your inner roof needs constant protection from ice and water. You should know that while the top material should offer this protection, most roofs get minor gaps due to wear and tear. As such, your roof needs a shield to protect the roof valleys, penetrations, and all parts with a high pitch from water damage.
The Underlayment Materials
It is easy to assume that the top roofing material is the only thing that contractors nail onto the roof frame. However, most roofing systems also feature an underlayment. This layer occupies the space between the decking and the roofing material and serves as a barrier should water seep underneath. Moreover, during installation, you can choose from two different materials, felt and synthetic. If you are unsure which underlayment is best for your roofing material, consult a roofing contractor to help you weigh the pros and cons of each option.
This is the most crucial protective feature a residential roof should have. Flashing occupies spaces where the roofing materials create joints, such as around the chimney, valleys, and walls. You should know that functional flashing prevents water from entering the home when it rains. Hence, it is best to repair damaged flashing before it causes leaks.
These are some of the components that make your roof. Note that a residential roof installation contractor should periodically assess these parts and help you determine their current state. Also, they will perform necessary repairs to ensure a robust and durable roof.