Roofing Terminology Explained

Roofing Tips

Roofing Terminology Explained

When it comes to deciding whether to repair or replace your roof, it’s in your best interests to learn some of the terminology used in the roofing industry. At ABC Roofing Corp. we believe in educating our clients and have provided this list of commonly used terminology:


Eaves are the lower edge of the roof overhang.  They overhang keeps rainwater off the walls of the home or building. They are also what causes water run-off the roof and flow into gutters. Protecting pathways around buildings from rain, while preventing erosion of the footings.


Dormers are the small structures which project from a sloped roof. Dormers usually have a window. A common use for a dormer is to increase usable space in a loft, though they also hold use in creating a window opening in a roof plane. Dormers can be found as early as the 16th century and were used in domestic architecture.


Flashing are used to maintain a watertight roof Flashings are installed around an intersection or projection in a roof system. Flashing can come in various materials although metal is the most prevalently used. It is generally used along chimneys, vent pipes, valleys, and joints at vertical walls. Flashing makes roofs more durable and water tight which also helps can reduce indoor mold problems


Penetrations are easy to spot, generally they can be associated with whatever add-on is penetrating the roof deck. Things like lead stacks, vents, chimneys and so on. There are many reasons for a roof penetration. Namely to allow its add-on to do its job. A well-managed penetration should be fully sealed off, otherwise wind, rain, and vermin could find its way into these sections


Rafters are also a common term used in the roofing industry. They are the supporting frame to which the deck is attached. A rafter extends from various parts of a structure, one of these parts being the eave. Rafters are usually made of wood in home structures, exposed rafters being a feature of certain traditional roof styles

Self-sealing strip

A self-sealing strip is designed for asphalt shingles. After application the strips bond shingle courses together through exposure by the heat of the sun.


Roof sheathing, otherwise referred to as sheeting, is the surface that the roofs base sheet and underlayment is installed on. It is usually made from plywood or oriented strand board (OSB).


Pitch refers to the degree of the roof inclination. Roof pitch (or slope) tells you how many inches the roof rises for every 12 inches of depth and is typically pitched downwards in two angles from a central ridge.

With this roofing terminology guide, you will be able to make an educated decision when it comes to your residential roof repairs. If you have any questions about the roofing industry or you need some advice on your upcoming roofing project be sure to give us a call. ABC Roofing Corp. is a large family owned and operated state certified roofing company serving South Florida for thirty years. Our reputation is based on honesty, loyalty, as well as a commitment to excellent service and satisfying our customers every need.

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