Flashing is an important part of your roofing system that should be used around every roof penetration, such as a plumbing vent, or intersection of two planes, such as where a roof meets a wall. The purpose of flashing is to create a watertight seal to prevent leaks. If flashing is missing, improperly installed or damaged, water can penetrate and potentially cause damage to the roof deck as well as the structure’s interior.
These leaks also create an ideal breeding ground for mold and mildew, which can pose a health hazard to occupants; hence, flashing, sealing and repair cannot be ignored.
Although leaks can occur around any flashing that is in poor repair, the area around the chimney is a frequent location for leaks. The flashing around a chimney must cover a significant area that is exposed to the ravages of nature. In addition, in most modern homes, the chimney does not penetrate the roof at its peak, but instead it is placed lower down the roof, directly in the path of the flow of water.
Flashing should be inspected annually to make sure that it is not cracked or bent and that its seal is intact. It is also wise to have the flashing inspected after a hailstorm, even if it is not yet time for an annual inspection. When problems are found early, they can be remedied before further damage is done.
Whether flashing must be replaced or repaired can only be determined after inspecting the roof. In some cases, flashing can be sealed to waterproof the area and secure the flashing. However, metal flashing that has buckled or cracked must typically be replaced as any attempts to repair it would be short-lived and ineffective.
Although installing, flashing, sealing and repair might seem easy, these tasks are best left to a roofing professional. There are a number of different products and methods that can be used, but not all of them are ideal for every roof. Hiring a professional is relatively inexpensive and is one of the most cost-effective elements of a routine maintenance program for the roof.
At Alpha Roofing, we recommend that customers have their flashing inspected at least once every year. This can be combined with an annual chimney inspection or cleaning, or it can be incorporated with a thorough roof inspection. We are a full-service roofing company with more than 35 years of experience providing quality work to customers in Central Texas. You can request a free quote by using our online form, or you can call 512-777-1086 to speak with one of our knowledgeable representatives about flashing, sealing and repair.