What are the different parts of a roofing system?


You probably imagine shingles when you think about your roof, but it’s actually composed of several different key parts. We’ve put together a guide to the main components of a roofing system so you’ll know more about how your roof keeps you safe from the elements.

The basic components of a roofing system

Most roofing systems can be broken down into six basic parts, each of which plays a role in protecting your home’s interior from the outdoors.

  • Roof covering: the outermost layer of the roof, usually consisting of shingles or shakes

  • Underlayment: a sheet of asphalt-saturated material underneath the covering that protects the sheathing

  • Sheathing (decking): the boards or sheet material fastened to the roof’s rafters

  • Roof structure: the rafters and trusses that support the sheathing and provide a foundation

  • Flashing: sheet metal or other material installed in a roof’s joints and valleys to prevent water seepage

  • Drainage: the parts of a roof’s design—such as shape and slope—that help it shed water

If you’re having problems with an aspect of your roof, make sure to hire professional roofers rather than trying to fix it yourself. DIY repairs can aggravate the problem and result in leaks if you don’t have a thorough understanding of how roofing systems work.

Choosing the right shingles

While roofing companies will take care of choosing the right materials for most roof parts, you can often select what type of shingles you’d like for the covering. At Alf’s Roofing, we offer the following choices when it comes to shingles. 

  • Fibreglass shingles: fibreglass shingles give your home the protection it needs from the harsh winter weather in Edmonton. With a base of synthetic glass fibre coated in asphalt, these shingles absorb little moisture and are heat resistant, making them ideal for a climate that gets lots of snow and has hot summers and frigid winters. Plus, they’re affordable as well as durable.

  • SBS laminated shingles: styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS) is a rubberized polymer that’s blended with asphalt to create shingles that have a flexible, rubber-like quality. Because these shingles have been proven to provide superior impact, wind and water resistance, they’ve earned a Class 4 impact resistance rating, the highest in the industry.

  • Cedar shakes: although more expensive and less durable than fibreglass shingles, cedar shakes give your Edmonton home a handcrafted look while still offering insulation and weather resistance.

At Alf’s Roofing, we have the roofing materials and experienced installers to give your home the protection it deserves. Whether you’re looking to redo your roof with weather-resistant fibreglass shingles, up your curb appeal with cedar shakes or repair storm damage, we’re here for your roofing needs in Edmonton. Contact us today or visit our website to request a free estimate.

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