A Glossary of Roofing Terminology & Definitions

A Glossary of Roofing Terminology & Definitions

Replacing Your Shingle Roof In Bozeman, MT: A Complete Guide

If you’re in need of roof repair in Helena, MT, it’s important to use the right terminology when speaking with roofing contractors. Doing so will allow you to describe and understand roofing issues accurately, leaving as little confusion as possible between you and roofing companies in Helena, MT.

Here, we’ll go over the most common roofing terms Helena, MT contractors, may use. Ready to familiarize yourself? Read on!

Roofing Elements

First things first, let’s go over common terminology relating to elements of roofing in Helena, MT.


Ventilation is used to control indoor air quality. Good air circulation in your roof ensures no excess build-up of moisture, which can cause damage to the remainder of your home.


Roofing underlayment is a water-resistant layer that lies in between shingles and the roof deck, providing a second layer of protection from outdoor elements.

Roof Ridge

The roof ridge is the point at which different parts of the structure join together. It’s often referred to as the peak since two roof planes meet, creating the roof’s highest point. They offer extra protection to ensure structural integrity.


Valleys form when two slopes meet. Rainwater gathers here and then flows off the roof. When valleys are not installed correctly, homeowners run the risk of serious leaks.


Decking is the foundation structure at the top of your house, on top of which the underlayment and shingles sit.


Eaves are those parts of the roofing that hang over the edge of your home. They exist to reduce the exposure of your exterior walls to rainwater, and they are also used for ventilation.


Shingles are the tiles that cover the top of your house and are the visible element of the roofing. They help protect against water leaks and damage from the sun.


Flashing is made up of a thin metal material. It’s used to direct water away from vulnerable areas such as valleys, chimneys, or walls.

Roofing Styles

Now that we’ve covered elements let’s go over the most popular styles of roofing installed by roofing contractors in Helena.

Gable Roof

This is the most common type of roofing in Helena, MT, consisting of two sections that meet to form the roof ridge. Think of a standard, triangular-shaped roof that you see on top of most typical houses. It’s also the type that young children typically draw on a house. You have two sloping sides that come together at a point.

Shed Roof

A shed roof slopes down in one direction. It’s higher at one end and lowers at the other. Originally, it was only used in sheds, but it’s become more popular to use on houses.

Hip Roof

A hip roof is shaped like a pyramid. It has a slope on each of four sides, which joins up to form a ridge at the top. This type is most common in colder areas that experience regular snowfall.

Final Thoughts

Learning these terms and definitions will help you understand the jargon of Helena, MT roofing contractors. It will also put you in a better spot to describe the issues within your roof and request the right repairs.

To schedule an appointment, get in touch with quality Helena, MT roofing contractors today!

POSTED 6/02/2022
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