When it comes time for the installation of a new roof, many homeowners focus solely on shingle color and style, rather than taking the time to fully research the components being used. One of the lesser talked about aspects of a roof is a drip edge. Allow us to break down what it is and why it’s a critical roofing component.
What’s a Drip Edge on a Roof? A drip edge is a metal flashing that diverts precipitation away from the roof’s edge. It is placed on the roof’s gable edges and eaves. The edge’s primary function is to stop water from filtering behind the siding or soffit edge by channeling it off the roof and towards the rain gutters.
Why is a Drip Edge Important?
The edges of your roof receive a significant amount of moisture, particularly on homes with a steep roof slope. With a drip edge in place, water is deflected away from the fascia, preventing dry rot. This edge will also seal off any rifts at the bottom of the roof, particularly near the decking and fascia. This provides a preventative barrier against attic access by critters. A roofing drip edge also restricts movement between the boards on a roof deck and fascia. In the absence of a roof drip edge, water will stick to the shingles, which creates a scenario where moisture can penetrate the backside of the shingles and ultimately leak into your home. In the event that a tree falls on your roof, this edge can act as a preventative against shingles sagging into your gutters. It also works to reinforce shingles during heavy windstorms. All these characteristics promote the maximum lifespan of the roof.
Learn More About the Components of GAF’s 50-Year System:
Do I Need a Drip Edge Installation When I Get a New Roof?
While it will cost you less to reuse the current drip edge, when you get a new roof installed, we implore you not to. For starters, the old roof edge is likely weathered from nature’s elements and is likely detracting from your home’s curb appeal. It’s also worth noting that the preexisting roof edge can become damaged during shingle tear-off.
If My Roof Was Installed Without a Drip Edge, Can One Be Added Later?
The optimum time for a drip edge roofing installation is when a home is being built, or when a new roof is being installed. With that being said, it is possible for a reputable and knowledgeable contractor to install it on a preexisting roof.