A roof underlayment is a key part of your roofing system, even if it’s not visible to the naked eye. When you think about your roof, shingles are probably first to pop into your head. But an underlayment is a vital part of what protects your home from water damage.
Why Does Your Roof Need an Underlayment?
A roof underlayment is a sheet of felt or synthetic material spread on the roof’s plywood deck before the shingles are fastened.
An underlayment is for an added layer of protection and is designed to prevent precipitation and moisture from permeating the deck, which could result in attic leaks and wood rot.
A roof underlayment doesn’t just protect the deck from water, it protects the wood from chemicals in the shingles. Heat from the sun’s rays can make shingles practically melt into the wood if there is no underlayment in between, resulting in expensive repairs.
Finally, if shingles fly off your roof, your roof deck isn’t immediately exposed. The underlayment helps protect the wood until you can repair the damage.
There are two basic types of this product, one made primarily of felt and one made of modified bitumen, or synthetic material. Which is better?
Advantages of Felt
Felt paper is saturated with asphalt to make it waterproof and is packed together in either 15- or 30-pound blocks. It is heavy, slippery and difficult to install. However, when making a choice, remember that felt is more affordable than most synthetic options. It’s also still effective at preventing moisture from seeping into the roof deck.
Should You Choose Synthetic?
Synthetic underlayment is thinner and lighter than felt, and much easier to install. It’s also believed to be more effective at preventing water seepage, but it’s more expensive. However, because of its chemical makeup, it lasts longer so you will see a higher return on investment.
Talk with Your Contractor
If you choose a roofing contractor that is qualified to install high-end products, such as GAF materials, make sure you opt for a roof underlayment of the same brand as the shingles and other materials. That way you can make sure it’s covered under the same warranty.
It never pays to cut corners on a roofing project, even when it comes to choosing the roof underlayment. It’s more important than you might realize.
Work with Knockout Roofing and you will gain peace of mind knowing that your roof replacement was carried out precisely, to the finest detail. You won’t have to worry that your roof underlayment will leak — your home will be protected.