Pretend that the building you are in doesn’t have a roof. What if it was storming and the building you were in was roofless? How would that make you feel? I’m sure not the best! The roof is a crucial part of any building. Therefore, since it is so essential, one should be knowledgeable about the one that goes over their head. 


Why You Should Know Basic Roofing Terminology

Understanding basic roofing terminology comes quite in handy when you have problems with the roof of your home or business. By knowing a few terms, you can communicate effectively, make informed decisions, assess roof conditions, follow best practices for maintenance and budget, and be aware of the risk.


Roof Structure Terminology

  1. Rafters

    Rafters are the inclined beams that make up the structural framework of your roof.

  2. Trusses

    Trusses are pre-fabricated structural frameworks used in roofing.

  3. Decking

    Decking is the layer of material that provides the foundation for the roof covering.

  4. Underlayment 

    Underlayment is the layer of material installed above the decking but below the roof covering.


Roofing Material Terminology

  1. Shingles

    Shingles are a roof covering material that creates a protective and aesthetically pleasing roof surface.

  2. Flashing 

    Flashing is the material used to create a watertight barrier around your roof where the covering is interrupted.

  3. Eaves and Soffits

    Eaves and soffits are the horizontal and vertical parts of the roof overhang.

  4. Ridge Vents

    Ridge vents are openings that allow air circulation into your attic.


Roofing Installation And Maintenance Terminology

  1. Pitch

    A roof pitch is the slope or steepness of your roof.

  2. Valley

    A valley is the intersection of two roof planes.

  3. Insulation

    Insulation is the material that provides thermal resistance and prevents heat transfer between the exterior and interior of your building.


There are many other roofing terms in the roofing dictionary, but hopefully, this kickstart will have you speaking roof like a pro. By familiarizing yourself with the terminology, you can make decisions about your roof more efficiently and knowledgeably. You’ll be better equipped to protect your investment and create a safe environment. A happy home equals a happy you!


Riddle Brothers Roofing & Construction is an award-winning roofing company that services the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. Our experienced roofers, with both commercial and residential roofs, have experience with claims and can assist your insurance company. We provide only the best quality roofing material in the industry to ensure you get a quality roof that will last many years. To learn more about Riddle Brothers Roofing & Construction, call (214) 884-8346 or visit our website for a free quote.

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