Common Roofing Definitions

These are some of the most common roofing terms and vocabulary that you might encounter when talking with roofing contractors.

When you need roofing services, it’s vital to know the terminologies related to the industry so that you won’t get taken advantage of by scammers who are only out there to make a quick buck.

It’s common for our roof experts to encounter roofs that are installed poorly and are prone to fail a manufacturer or code inspection.

We have heard the horror stories of local families in Maryland, lamenting how their contractor failed and put their money down the drain.

At Xpress Exterior Design we are committed to serving the community based on the following:

  • Perfectly on time
  • Genuine personalities
  • Intelligent and organized
  • Stunning craftsmanship


Asphalt shingles are one of the most affordable roofing materials and are a common type we see in most Maryland homes at present.

They come in an array of colors and are commonly used on sloped roofs, single homes, and smaller residential projects.

Maryland homeowners love asphalt shingles because they are easy to install and provides flexibility in the installation process.

You can now buy them in different textures and thicknesses plus they can already be treated against mold and mildew.


Back in the 80s, technological advancements to the traditional roofing shingle resulted in the production of high-quality asphalt roofing products we now know as architectural roofing shingles.

Also known as laminated or dimensional shingles, these roofing products are of the highest quality.

They are usually made of heavy fiberglass mat base and ceramic-coated mineral granules that are ingrained in water-proof asphalt.


When you hear about chimney flashing, this refers to a sheet of metal installed around the area where the chimney meets the roof.

Flashing is installed to ensure that the connection between the roof and the chimney is sealed completely to prevent water from coming in.

These metals may last long but they are prone to wear and tear.

Leaks from your chimney flashing can cause major structural damage to your home and this needs immediate attention.


Flat roofing refers to any roofing system that is flat in appearance. Flat roofs are typical in malls, warehouses, apartments, schools, and apartment buildings.

Flat roofing is perfectly flat but has a very low slope around ¼ to ½ inch per foot to allow draining of water.

Most modern residential homes in the U.S. have steep pitches, but older houses have flat roofs or low slopes


A roofing system that has a 4” vertical rise for every 12” of horizontal run is considered a low slope roof.

No roof should be dead flat because it needs a slight slope to drain water.

Modern low slope roofs use a continuous membrane covering which can get rid of pools of standing water.


Similar to chimney flashing when it comes to function, pipe flashing is needed to seal around pipes for a waterproof finish to any roof membrane.

Pipe flashing is usually a thin piece of impervious material used in building construction that can prevent water from penetrating a joint in the building structure.

These flashings are designed to fit the cylindrical contour of tubes and pipes and is used anywhere pipes penetrate a roofing system.


When it comes to building construction, the roof pitch is the measure of the steepness of a roof.

Roof pitch is also known as the “slope” of your roof and it tells you how many inches your roof rises for every 12-inch depth.

Xpress Exterior Design: A Full-Service Roofing Company

If you are a Maryland homeowner that is looking for a team that can help you build a roof that will last a lifetime, Xpress Exterior Design is here to serve you!

Our company takes roofing services seriously and we can relate to every Maryland homeowner who encounters roofing problems due to faulty work.

We are here to show the community that we are different, we care about people’s homes and it is our mission to provide excellent workmanship that is far beyond any other contractor.

If you need professional roofing services you can give us a call at 855-MY-XPERT or fill out our contact form.

Our roofing experts will get back to you shortly.

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