All About Drip Edges

drip edgeWhen it comes to the roof system, most Calgarians can pretty easily recognize shingles, vents, and eaves troughs. Calgary homeowners can likely guess what the roof decks is, and some might know a bit more beyond that. However, it seems like one part of the roof that the average Calgarian isn’t very familiar with is the drip edge.

What is a Drip Edge? A drip edge is a long piece of metal that is installed at each edge of your roof deck. There are a few different shapes, a variety of sizes, and many different colours. With all the options, this metal strip should be blend in perfectly with your roof.

The Drip Edge’s Function. Now that you know that a drip edge is simply a piece of metal that runs along the edge of your roof deck, you may be wondering what the heck it’s good for. Well, the drip edge serves several functions.

The first is that it helps support the weight of your shingles. Shingles are installed so that they overhang an inch or two past the edge of the roof. Without a drip edge present to hold them up, after a year or two of baking in the sun, they’ll curl down into your eaves troughs and may lead to leaks.

Secondly, they help prevent small animals burrowing into your attic. Because of its placement and rigid metal build, a drip edge makes it much more difficult for an animal to chew and dig its way into your home. Without a drip edge, an animal can pry the shingles up and chew their way into the house.

Finally, it’s very reasonable to assume that installing a drip edge will save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars when it’s time to replace your roof. The drip edge’s ultimate purpose is to protect your roof deck from water damage. By preventing shingles from curling, they help to guarantee that water will drain off the roof properly. They also protect several inches of the outermost edge of your roof deck from any possible water damage and rot. Without a drip edge to protect it, part of the roof deck will likely need to be replaced when your roof is redone.

Drip edges are not a mandatory requirement of Alberta code. For this reason, you’ll often find that new and budget homes simply don’t have them. At Roof Hospital though, we strongly recommend that every roof system includes a drip edge. If your home needs a drip edge installed or if you have any questions concerning roofing in Calgary, call the Roof Hospital today at (403) 457-3330.