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Jacksonville Roofing: Article About Roofing Underlayment Details

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One of the most important components to any roofing system is almost never seen by homeowners. Underlayment, or roofing felt, is the material that resides between the deck and shingles. When a Jacksonville roofing company starts a project, proper underlayment type and installation style are crucial to a rooftop lasting several decades. Homeowners must understand the differences between underlayment types to make an informed decision during contract negotiations.

The underlayment's main job is to protect the structure from moisture infiltration. This material used to be called roofing felt because of its dark color. Basic underlayment is made of asphalt and bitumen, creating a strong and water resistant barrier to incoming moisture. Although shingles take the brunt of the weathering damage during the years, the underlayment is another level of protection to keep the roof deck as dry as possible. Any leak into the home weakens wood and creates possible mold problems.

Some contractors may suggest fiberglass reinforced underlayment. This material is more expensive than basic roofing felt, but fiberglass creates a more sturdy effect on the roof. If homeowners watch the underlayment's installation, a fiberglass selection will have a flatter appearance compared to other felt products. This flat surface contributes to a flush shingle installation and better aesthetic.

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Underlayment comes in two main thickness choices, including 15 or 30 pound types. Roofs that don't require heavy foot traffic to reach access points, such as air conditioners, can use the thinner 15 pound underlayment. Regions with relatively calm weather can also use 15 pound felt. However, 30 pound products are much thicker and withstand more weathering over the years. Contractors can discuss all options with homeowners to choose the best material.

Regardless of the underlayment type, contractors overlap the material by 2 inches on most installations. They also use staples or plastic nail caps to affix the felt to the deck. Although there may be some variations between contractors and regions, these overlapping and fastener tactics are crucial to a successful rooftop installation.

All roof installations require complete coverage with several underlayment courses, creating a waterproof surface in the event of shingle damage or loss. Because underlayment cannot be inspected each year for any damages, it's important to maintain a strong relationship with the roofers. They can inspect the shingles for any issues each year, for instance. When the shingles are sturdy, the underlayment below is normally untouched and ready to protect the home during any rainstorms.

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