You may ask, does a metal roof need a drip edge if you are installing a new roof or working on an existing roof system. This item can be optional depending on the roof overhang length and slope. A drip edge is not necessary as long as your metal roof extends an inch or more beyond the eaves. However, if you want to avoid any water damage or provide additional protection to the building, a drip edge is beneficial.
Also have in consideration that some building codes will require a drip edge regardless of the roofing materials. You should always check with local building codes to ensure you follow the proper regulations when installing a metal roof.
The Purposes and Benefits of Using a Drip Edge
A drip edge is also known as a metal flashing that sits at the end of the roofing material. This roofing component can be beneficial for several reasons, including:
- Protecting the structure from damage
- Minimizing pests in the attic or roofing system
- Providing a neat appearance
Protecting the Structure from Damage
Drip edges will help direct water away from the fascia, so there is little risk of water getting under the roof components and causing damage.
High winds can redirect moisture back into the roofing system when there is no drip edge in place to stop it. Other times, water splashback can happen during extreme weather conditions, creating damage to the roof underlay and other components.
While drip edges are an essential part of shingle roofing systems, they are not critical for many styles of metal roofs. Metal material is less vulnerable than wood and shingles with continuous water flow, making drip edges less crucial.
That does not mean that you should forget about them entirely, though. For example, metal roofs that do not extend far beyond the structure should have a drip edge to direct the water away as needed.
Minimizing Pests in the Attic or Roofing System
Roof systems that have openings to the attic can benefit from adding drip edges. This additional component will help seal these spaces to eliminate the chances of rodents or pests getting into the attic or roofing system.
Bats, squirrels, birds, and insects often look for shelter in these small spaces and can cause significant damage to your roofing system. Even with extended metal overhangs, a drip edge can keep these critters from taking up residence in your building and save you the hassle of getting rid of them later.
Providing a Neat Appearance
For many individuals, a metal roof will not look quite finished and neat without a drip edge. So, installing one can provide a neat appearance that gives your building an aesthetic and polished look. Even if your local building codes do not require this addition on your metal roof
Some roof systems with extreme weather conditions will sustain damage over time where the roof deck and fascia boards separate. These circumstances will cause your roof to look shabby and can allow damage to the structure. However, you can keep your roof system looking great with a simple drip edge.
Should I Install a Drip Edge on My Metal Roof?
If your metal roof extends longer than one inch beyond your eaves and your local building codes do not require it, you do not have to install a drip edge. Alternatively, many homeowners will opt to include drip edges on their metal roofs anyhow.
Having a drip edge on your metal roof provides added benefits of redirecting the water to minimize the chances of damage to the building later. For many individuals, the added minimal price of a drip edge outweighs the potentially costly damage water and pests can create over time.
If you plan on selling your home or commercial building, a drip edge can help maintain the property’s value. In addition, you may have a higher resale value when your roof has this feature to help minimize any costly damages in the future.
Is a Drip Edge and a Rake Edge the Same Thing?
Drip edges and rake edges are both roof components that help protect a building from damage. Each item will be installed in a specific area of the roof and work in different climates. For example, rake edges work more efficiently for environments with colder temperatures, where drip edges are ideal for more tropical or mild to moderate weather conditions.
Where Does a Drip Edge Go on a Roof?
If you want to install a drip edge on your current roofing system, it should go around the entire roof’s perimeter on the edge of the roofing system. These components install from the rake up, and only an inch is visible from the outside. It should also secure every 12 to 24 inches to the roof to prevent any lifting or damage from the elements in extreme weather conditions.
How Far Out Should a Drip Edge Be on a Metal Roof?
When including a drip edge on a metal roof, it should be one to two inches further than the eaves. This distance will help provide ample protection and functionality. Depending on the length of your roof overhang, your drip edge may measure two to four inches away from the side of the building.
Drip edges on metal roof structures may be necessary or optional, depending on the local building codes and the length of the roof’s overhang.
If you are not sure of your building code regulations, it is critical that you find out if a drip edge is necessary before beginning your build. Determining this information ahead of time will save you time and hassle later.
Some metal roofing systems that do possess an ample overhang of an inch or more will not require a drip edge, but this additional item can prove to be beneficial in several ways. Many individuals will decide to include it for extra protection and aesthetic purposes, even though it may be an optional item.