Roof Terms

Every industry has its own jargon, and the roofing industry is no exception. Understanding roof-speak can be somewhat daunting, but the following brief list of roof terms should give you a leg-up in understanding the work being done to your home.

***Looking for a list of different Roof Types, please see our Roof Types page.***

A long piece of wood or steel that supports your roof that, when grouped, can form a truss.

The overhanging part of the roof that sticks out past your walls.

The degree of weather protection offered by a roofing material: single, double or triple coverage.

The wood roof surface to which roofing materials are applied.

A gabled extension protruding from a sloping roof to allow for a framed window.

Drip Edge
Weather-resistant metal or vinyl edge installed along eaves and rakes to facilitate shedding of water at the edges.

Parts of a roof that project beyond or overhang the face of the wall at the lower edge of the roof.

Eaves Trough
They are also known as gutters. They provide a method by which water that drips off the roof is caught and carried down the down spouts to an appropriate area for it to wash away.

Specifically, exposure to weather: the distance from the butt edge of one shingle to another.

The vertical edge of the cornice.

A breather-type building paper of strong, tough base saturated with asphalt.

Strips of metal or roofing material used in making watertight joints on a roof, especially in valleys or where inclined and vertical surfaces intersect. These must be laid at all points where the roof meets a wall, chimney, skylight, vents, dormer, valley or stack.

The end wall of a building which comes to a triangular point under a sloping roof; also, a type of roof.

An external angle formed by the meeting of two sloping ends of the roof, from the ridge to the eaves; also, a type of roof.

The inclined edge of a pitched roof over an end wall.

The apex of the angle formed by a roof, or the peak, where the common rafters meet.

The horizontal bottom of the cornice.

The amount of roofing material required to cover 100 square feet (10’x10′) of roof surface.

A framework of beams, usually grouped in a triangular nature, that support the roof.

An internal angle or water runway formed by the intersection of two slopes in a roof.