As with any element to a roof renovation, you have plenty of choices for roof flashing. You’ll need to determine the best options to suit your roof space to offer adequate protection for your home.
Let’s quickly recap the purpose of roof flashing before looking more closely at apron flashing, your other options, and a look at flashing materials.
What is Roof Flashing?
Roof flashing is a type of material that roofers use to protect the areas of a roof where water is likely to accumulate or penetrate. Therefore, its one of the significant lines of defence against the elements for Australian homes, in addition to the roofing materials and roof sheeting underneath that protect the roof itself.
We usually use metals, such as aluminum or copper, as the material for roof flashing. It is installed in specific roof areas where water could seep through.
The primary purpose of roof flashing is to prevent water from getting inside your home or building. Without flashing, water could seep into the roof and cause damage to the underlying structure, leading to mold growth, rot, and other issues. Naturally, this could be very damaging and costly for your home, making choosing the right option critical.
One of the most common areas where flashing is installed is around chimneys. Because chimneys protrude from the roof and have a gap between them and the roof itself, they are a prime location for water to enter. Flashing is installed around the base of the chimney to prevent water from seeping into this gap.
This form of flashing is apron flashing.
What is Apron Flashing?
Apron flashing, sometimes called continuous flashing, is a type of roof flashing installed along the bottom of a sloped roof where it meets a vertical wall, such as the vertical walls of your house or the chimney, as mentioned above.
Apron flashing colorbond steel is popular in Australia because we can bend it to neatly fit the roof’s contours and other surfaces. You install apron flashing by attaching it to the vertical surface and then overlapping it with the roofing material, such as shingles or tiles, that makes up the sloped roof. Operating as a watertight seal creates a barrier that diverts water away from the joint and down the roof. There, it can flow into the gutters and be safely carried away from the building.
As well as protecting against potential water damage, apron flashing can also help improve a roof’s aesthetic appeal. It’s available in a range of colours and finishes, so it can be used to complement the look of the roof and giving the whole ensemble a pleasing finish.
Apron roof flashings are an excellent option for Australian roofs because of their versatility. Apron flashings are relatively easy to install, and you can pair them with various roofing materials. It’s also a cost-effective way to protect the vulnerable joint between the roof and the vertical surface from that pesky water penetrating in.
How Do I Know if Apron Flashing Is a Good Choice For Me?
Roofs are a significant outlay, so you want to ensure you get the job done right. How do you know if apron flashing will work for your roof? A few factors will determine whether apron flashing is the right choice for your particular roof space.
Your roof slope is vital when it comes to whether apron flashing is suitable for you.
If the roof’s slope is too shallow, water may not be able to flow down the roof and away from the roof joint. If this is the case, water could accumulate and eventually seep through the flashing and into the building. Similarly, if you have a steeper sloped roof, water may flow over the top of the flashing, defeating its purpose.
Therefore, it’s crucial to determine whether your roof slope will render apron flashing inadvisable in the first place.
Generally, a slope of at least 2:12 is suitable for apron flashings. A slope of 2:12 means that the roof rises at least 2 inches vertically for every 12 inches of horizontal distance, allowing the desired level of water flow to run off into box gutters.
Other Types of Roof Flashing
The reality is that you’ll need to consult a roofing professional to combine a variety of differing flashing methods for the perfect custom flashings roofing system. As with all of these examples of roof flashing, the purpose to divert water away from anywhere it can cause damage.
Base Flashing: This kind of flashing acts as the first of two materials used to protect certain roof features, like chimneys, by ensuring rain always hits a surface that will direct it downwards.
Barge Flashing: This type of flashing sits over the edges of your roof to protect against rainwater blown in by the wind
Wall Flashing: Wall flashing can be embedded in a wall
Valley Flashing: Valley flashing fixes into the roof valleys formed where two roof sections meet, so water runs down and away from the roof surface.
Ridge Flashing: Ridge flashings fix on the maximum length of the top ‘ridge’ of apex roofs, where the two sloping sides meet in the middle. Ridge flashings prevent water from getting in through the exposed seam.
Varieties of Flashing Material
Wakaflex and Dakaflash are all popular brands of roof flashing material. While they both serve the same general purpose of sealing and protecting the joints and transitions in a roof, some differences between them may make one brand more suitable for your specific roofing needs than another.
Wakaflex is a flexible, adhesive-backed flashing material made from a combination of aluminum and polymer materials. It is known for its durability, flexibility, and ease of installation. Wakaflex can be used on various roofing materials and is designed to withstand extreme weather conditions.
Dakaflash is a lead-free roof flashing material made from a combination of aluminum and butyl rubber. It is also known for its high flexibility and easy installation.
Choosing Wakaflex over Dakaflash or vice versa will depend on your specific needs and preferences. It’s essential to do your research, compare the features, costs, and benefits of each material, and feel free to reach out to us for advice on which is better for your home.