What are flashings on a roof?

Published On December 22, 2021 | By Danny White | Home Improvement

Flashing is a roofing material put on the roof to prevent water or other liquid from seeping in through the openings in the cracks. Flashing is primarily placed underneath the shingles and is responsible for redirecting the water towards another location. This is a crucial material that every roof must have. Otherwise, the roof is more prone to damage.

The most common material used for roof flashing is steel. It gives a sleek look and fits the budget of most people. If you wish for an upgraded look, you should go for copper since it is more aesthetically pleasing and will have a longer life. However, copper costs more.

Regions of the roof that may require flashing

  • Front and sidewalls
  • Valleys
  • Protrusions in the roof
  • Edges of the roof

Continuous flashing

A continuous flashing is a type of flashing involves placing a single long metal on the roof to redirect any water to the shingles underneath. The problem with continuous flashing is that when the roof expands and contracts under different weather conditions, the flashing struggles and may break. To prevent breaking, expansion joints are installed.

Base flashing

Certain roof regions around the chimneys require more than one piece of flashing. The purpose of base flashing is to ensure that the water always comes in contact with the flashing surface. This will make sure that the water moves away from the roof. Base flashing is relatively easy to install. If the weather changes, the roof materials will contract and expand. However, base flashing is more adaptable to the weather due to being made of two different pieces of metal.

Counter flashing

Counter flashing is either put on the opposite side of the base flashing or top of it. Counter flashing can be seen as the second piece required to complete the assembly of the base flashing on the roof.

Step flashing

Step flashing, as the name suggests, bends 90ᵒ in the middle. Step flashings are installed in several layers. Shingles are installed along with step flashing to ensure that the water moves away from the wall and does not seep through the cracks.

Skylight flashing

A lot of skylights come with inbuilt flashing nowadays. However, if the skylight of your roof did not come with flashing, you should get it installed as quickly as you possibly can to ensure the safety of your roof. If you think of getting flashing done on your roof, check out Litcore.

Valley flashing

Valley flashing is primarily made of metal and is responsible for protecting any open valley from water damage.

Drip edges

Drip edges are made of metal installed on the edge of the roof. It is responsible for draining the water without causing any leakage or damage.

Kickout flashing

This flashing is responsible for closing the space between the regions of starting of the gutter and the ending of the step flashing. It is responsible for guiding the water away from the roof and into the drain.

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