Maybe you are wondering why you would need to get the basics down pat when all you have to do is to hire a professional roofer for repairs and replacements. Well, it’s simple really. The more you know about roofing basics, the easier it will be for you to speak with the experts. You will also have an easier time deciding on the correct course of action since you can supplement your knowledge with information from your roofing contractor. Keep reading so you know the three basic roofing knowledge that you need to have.

You should be familiar with the term roof system. Many people see the roof as only one homogeneous structure. The truth of it is that the roof is made up of several interconnected parts that play off each other’s strengths to create one structure with a lot of functions. Here are the parts of a roof system:

Sheathing – boards or flat sheets attached to rafters to cover the house or building

Roof covering – materials that protect the sheathing from the elements. These include tiles, shingles and all other roofing material that gets damaged and repaired first.

Roof structure – the sturdy understructure of the roof that supports the sheathing.

Flashing – materials used to cover valleys and joints to prevent water seepage and leaks.

Drainage – a design feature of all roofs whose purpose is to help shed water. This includes the slope of the roof as well as the gutters where water runs into.

Choosing the correct roof system can be daunting but all you need to remember is that you have to prioritize at least one of the following: aesthetics, architectural design, durability or cost. You can base your decision based on what properties do you want your house to show. Organic materials like wood are the least expensive and one of the lightest but it is also the least durable, lasting only up to 20 years. Heavier materials like clay or concrete last up to 100 years or more but are more expensive to purchase and to install. Metal roofs are light and durable, but they are quite expensive and can create much noise, especially when it’s raining.

It is very useful to note that insulation and ventilation are key functions of your roof. Ventilation lets heat out while insulation keeps heat in. This is how a roof regulates a house’s interior temperature. Remember not to block sources of ventilation while sealing sources of insulation. That way, temperature regulation is optimal.

The last thing that you need to know is that the roof is constantly being damaged by external forces, like heat from the sun, the force of the rain, wind, and hail, and the weight of snow. With all of these “enemies”, it is inevitable that the roof’s performance will dip in time. Take note of your roof’s birthday and consider replacing it when it is 25 years old.

For easy and hassle-free roof repairs and replacements, contact the experienced professionals at Watertite Company Inc., the best professional roofer in Massachusetts. Check out all our offers at and schedule your consultation.