Flashings are an essential part of any roof. They help to protect the edges and seals of the roof against water intrusion and leaks, as well as form a barrier against pests. Although they can be made of plastic or rubber, they are usually made of metal — in particular, aluminium, copper or steel. Here is a quick guide to the advantages and disadvantages of each one.
Aluminium is a popular choice because it is so lightweight and does not significantly add to the weight of the roof. It is also very easy to bend and shape. This makes it ideal for roofs that have an unusual shape. It is also an inexpensive option that makes it ideal if you are on a budget.
Its main disadvantage is that you will need to paint it, as it can corrode if you live near the coast and the air is salty. It can also suffer from pollution and can corrode if it comes into contact with alkaline materials such as timber, concrete or mortar. Fortunately, it holds paint well and should be durable if it is properly coated.
Copper is a much heavier material than aluminium. However, it is very long-lasting, and will not require any maintenance. It does not corrode in the face of salt water and so is more suitable for coastal homes. It is also popular with buyers because of its traditional look.
You should remember however that it is likely to discolour over time. Many people like this as it gives an aged and historical look, but it may not fit in with a more modern style of house.
A third option is stainless steel. This combines the advantages of both aluminium and copper — it is very durable and low-maintenance but is not likely to corrode. It can cope with polluted or salty air and does not deteriorate if it comes into contact with materials such as concrete. It is also easy to work and shape, so it is a good alternative to aluminium on custom roofs or other awkward shapes. Stainless steel also provides an attractive modern look, which may not be suitable for properties with a more traditional appearance.
It is worth taking some time to consider the material for your roof flashings. The right choice will add to the appearance of your home and keep your roof in good condition. For more information, just talk to a roofing material supplier.