How Does A Roof Work?
How does a roof work? Does it just sit at the top of your house, enjoying the view? While it’s easily the most overlooked part of your house, the roof is a critical component of your home. Read on to find out how your roof works to protect you, your family, and your possessions against rain, wind, heat, snow, and cold.
How Does The Roof Protect From Rain?
When rain falls on your roof, shingles and sheathing prevent water from soaking into your house. Shingles are the outermost part of the roof and the first line of defense. They’re designed to shed and repel water by being waterproof or water-resistant.
Asphalt shingles are the most common type of shingles in American homes. Their waterproofing function works by gravity, and as long as the water is flowing downwards, nothing will penetrate. As it rains, water runs down the roof, into your gutter system, drains or downspouts, and out into your drainage system or garden.
How Does The Roof Protect From Snow And Ice?
Theoretically, ice and snow should melt, and the water should flow down your roof and onto the gutters. However, the melted snow or ice can freeze again and get under your roof. An added underlayment layer of waterproof or water-resistant material is applied to deal with such issues.
Underlayment is applied directly on the roof deck, the foundation of the roofing system, and under the shingles. It acts as a water-resistant, breathable barrier that protects the deck and your house from melted ice or snow that gets through the top layer of the roof. Gutter heating systems can also be used to melt ice and snow and allow water to move freely.
How Does The Roof Protect From Wind?
Your roof is designed to remain sturdy and strong even through windstorms and hurricanes. A well-protected and robust roof deck or sheathing is fastened to the rafters of your house to ensure the roof doesn’t lift off in a wind storm and leave your home exposed.
The deck supports the weight of the other roofing materials. It also prevents objects like trees from crushing through your roof during wind storms.
How Does The Roof Protect From Temperature Changes?
Your roof protects your house from daily temperature changes by working with the artic to provide some resistance to the cold and heat. It does this through ventilation, which is one of the most vital elements of your roof.
Roof ventilation enables the flow of air on the underside of your roof deck through thermal and passive forces. A correctly ventilating roof allows warm, moist air to escape while allowing drier, cooler air to enter your home’s attic space. This prevents temperature fluctuations, keeps your energy bills down, and gets rid of moisture that would otherwise rot your roof from the inside out.
Roof and artic wall insulation can also help prevent warm air from escaping in winter months or if you live in areas with cold weather. It can act like a warm blanket for your house.
A roof is a vital home protection system, and it consists of more than a few shingles. Learn all about the parts of a roof What Are The Parts Of A Roof? that make up the residential roofing system in our next article.