Roofing Services Leeds

A Guide to Roofing Terminology

Considering a new roof for your property? During the research stage, the amount of roofing terminology can get a little overwhelming, right?

So, does it matter if some terms go over your head? In short, yes. Understanding what a roofing contractor is saying is essential if you’re going to make an informed decision. Luckily, we’re here to help.

Read on for our glossary of important roofing terminology:


Algae (moss)

Fungus on your roof that can leave dark stains even when cleared.


Apron flashing

The metal flashing used for chimney fronts or where a dormer front meets the roof slope.



A waterproof, tarmac-like material used on various roofing components. Not good practice.



Blistering occurs when bubbles emerge in roofing materials like tiles. It’s usually caused by moisture, which becomes trapped underneath or within the material.



Tiles which have been blown off a roof by high winds.



Parts of the roof are moved, or become buckled, when moisture gets into the underlayment or wooden decking



The CORC is the Confederation of Roofing Contractors. It was established in 1985 and ensures high standards in the roofing trade through its vetted members, meaning its members are considered the best in the business.

Gutter back

Commonly seen at the back of chimneys, a gutter back is small lead formed box to divert water away from the chimney.



This is when natural clay tiles/slates become broken down in their layers due to age and frost action, which can expose parts of your roof’s supporting structure.



A roof’s deck is the underlaying material on which roofing materials are applied. It’s usually made from timber floorboards or plywood/OSB3, and is an essential part of the roof’s structure.



A small structure that extends out of the sloping surface of the roof. It includes a raised roofing section (flat) which often includes a window to provide extra head space in converted lofts.


Drip edge

The drip edge is the perimeter of a flat roof that is formed to allow water to drip off and in to the gutters without entering the roof area beneath.



The very bottom row of tiles/slates and can be overhanging the edge of the roof, which stretches slightly out from the outside wall. It keeps water off exterior walls, and can even be used as a decorative feature for some homes in such as an extended eave.



This is fibreglass roofing and a very good material. (Glass Reinforced Plastic)



This refers to areas of the roof which have been left exposed, either by blow-offs, de or gradual erosion of roof tiles.



These are the nails and screws used by roofers to secure roofing materials to the roof parts.



Flashing is the thin sheets of material which protect your roof from water ingress. It’s normally used on projections, such as chimneys, around joints in materials and is predominately made from sheet lead.


Flashing cement

This is a sealant specifically made for flashing and the surrounding area.


Gable roof

A gable roof is the typical, traditional style of roof. It comprises two equally-sized peaked planes which meet at a central ridge line.


Hip roof

A roof made up of 3 planes which come together at one peak and have 2 “hip legs” – the sloped ridges.


Low pitch

Any roof pitched at less than 25 degrees is classed as a low sloped roof, requiring specific installation practices.



A roof which has sides that become steeper as they go down.



Mastic is an oil based-based material used for sealing some roofing materials such as flashings.



A workable mixture used to bond bricks together for chimneys made up fro sand and Portland cement.



This term describes nails that have been driven too forcefully, causing materials to break as a result.



Roofing materials which have been installed above their intended exposure – that’s how much of the tile is exposed and not overlapped by the next tile.



The Property Care Association develops new guidelines for professional work, with the aim of improving outcomes and promoting best practice.



Rafters (or ‘spars’) are a series of beams which support the weight of the roof. They’re usually made of timber and extend upwards from the eaves to the ridge timbers, spanning purlins which go the opposite way.


Roof vents

Vents for roof voids (lofts) to aid in controlling condensation in the roof space.


Roof plane

Any area or ‘side’ of the roof.



SafeContractor is a health and safety accreditation scheme for UK contractors, providing health and safety audits to reassure clients that everything is being handles correctly, in line with the current health and safety policies and procedures.


Shed roof

A single roof plane with one slope which does not link to any other planes or roofs and has no ridges or hips.


Soffit ventilation

Ventilation installed at or underneath the eaves of a roof.


Steep-slope roofing

Roofing on slopes higher than 45 degrees.


Step flashing

Also known as L-flashing, this is the use of bent metal flashing pieces (usually lead) to protect joins of horizontal and vertical walls from the weather. Mainly seen on chimneys.



Tiles are a traditional roofing material which overlap one another to cover and protect the roof. They’re in many differing shapes and sizes plus various colours.



A transition is when one roof plane is tied into another with a different slope.



Valleys are the area where two roof planes join as they slope upwards, creating a V shape in the roof. This is usually made up from lead sheets.



An essential component of any roof replacement or repairs – the warranty is a written agreement that covers you for any problems with your roof’s installation or materials.


Need anything else?

This glossary should help get you clued up on all the need-to-know roofing terminology. However, no glossary can be completely extensive. If there’s anything you need to know, feel free to get in touch with the team at DPR Roofing Leeds.

Who are we? DPR Roofing is a team of roofing specialists operating throughout Leeds and the surrounding areas. We have over 28 years of experience in all kinds of roofing – so there really is no job we can’t complete to the highest standards.

Whether it’s a small roofing repair, or a complete roof replacement, we provide a fast and efficient service for both individuals and companies. With NFRC accreditation and CORC membership, we are roofing contractors you can trust – whatever the job.

Post Comment


« Back

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How soon will I get my quote?
A. faqOnce we have carried out a full survey of your property we will send you a detailed quote within 48 hours.faq
Q. Are you insured?
A. faqYes. DPR Roofing Leeds are fully covered for public and employers liability.faq
Q. Is your work guaranteed?
A. faqAll work is guaranteed. The guarantee length is dependent on the type of work being undertaken and range from 1 year to 10 years. Please ask for more details.faq
Q. Can we buy equipment from you?
A. faqWhilst we provide the roofing materials for work we carry out, we are not a stockists of roofing materials and thus you cannot buy roofing supplies from ourselves and do it yourself.faq
Q. Do you sub contract your work out?
A. faqNo all of DPR's team are professionally qualified in all areas of roofing work and therefore we have no need to sub contract. We only sub contract when any additional work requires a specialist professional e.g. electrician etc.faq
Q. What if the weather is bad on the date of my works?
A. faqThe safety of our staff and your property is extremely important to DPR and therefore we would postpone any work until a more suitable day.faq
Q. Do I need to take time off work?
A. faqFor your initial survey it may be necessary for us to have access to the inside of your property e.g. to look at leak areas. However any external works where access is not required would not need you to be present.faq
Q. How long will the job take?
A. faqRepairs are usually completed within a day and renewals can be a number of days. DPR will provide you with an accurate works completion date after the survey is undertaken.faq
Q. Can we pay by credit or debit card over the phone?
A. faqYes. We take all forms of paymentfaq
Q. When are you open for business?
A. faqWe are open from 6am to 5pm Monday-Thursday (6am to 4pm on Fridays) for office enquiries and 7 days a week for emergency works. We offer 24 hour emergency assistance.faq
Q. Do you carry out insurance works?
A. faqYes we carry out insurance works for all the major providers.faq
Read More

Twitter Feed

Read More

Latest News

A Guide to Roofing Terminology


Considering a new roof for your property? During the research stage, the amount of roofing terminology can get a little overwhelming, right?Read More