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Knowledge is Power: Know Your Roof

Posted on October 31, 2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

Roof Anatomy 101

There’s far more to a roof system than meets the eye! There are parts and pieces that not only must perform at their best but also function at their best in order to avoid some pretty troublesome possibilities. Knowing the anatomy of your roof and also how everything functions, can help you avoid costly problems.

As the first part of an informative series, Knowledge is Power: Know Your Roof, we have compiled two lists: The Parts (or the structure) and The Pieces (or products added to the structure). These lists explain the names of the parts and pieces, as well as their location and/or functionality.

Keep these lists as a reference for when you have questions or concerns about your roof and need to speak to a roofing professional.

The Parts (structure)


  • Deck: The structural base, usually made of wood or plywood.
  • Eave: The lower border of the roof that overhangs the wall.
  • Hip: The intersection of two roof planes that meet to form a sloping ridge running from the peak to the eave.
  • Rake: The outer edge, from the eave to the ridge.
  • Ridge:  An intersection of two roof planes forming a horizontal peak
  • Valley: The intersection of two sloping roofs joining at an angle to provide water runoff.
  • Ridge vent:  An exhaust vent that runs horizontally along the peak of the roof allowing warm, humid air to escape from the attic.
  • Under-eave vent:  Intake vents located under the eaves that help draw cool dry air into the attic.
  • Gable Vent: Designed to allow hot air to escape from the attic. A gable vent is typically found on the end of a house, over the garage. A gable is the portion of a house that comes to a peak.


The Pieces (product)


  • Ice and water barrier: A self-adhesive waterproofing membrane used along eaves and valleys in order to protect these sensitive areas against ice damage and wind-driven rain.
  • Metal drip edge: A narrow strip of noncorrosive metal used at the rake to facilitate water runoff.
  • Underlayment: A layer of protective material between the deck and the shingles.
  • Architectural Shingles: Shingles containing more than one layer of tabs to add dimension and durability.
  • Flashing:  Waterproofing construction used at intersections of different planes or at openings in the roof.
  • Pipe Vent Boot: used around plumbing exhaust pipes, designed to fit snugly around the pipe.


Stay Tuned!

In our upcoming blogs, we’ll explain and discuss not only the function but the importance of the structure elements listed above. We hope to arm you with valuable knowledge that will enable you to advocate successfully for your roof in a timely manner — helping you avoid menacing or costly problems. If you have any questions, we are here to help- Horch Roofing   (207) 273-1111