Roofing Terminology Everyone Should Know When Getting a New Roof

Does it sound like your roofing contractor is speaking a second language? It can help to know some of the terms that they are using when speaking to you about a new roof.


When it comes to measuring how much roofing material will be used on a roof, a common term used is a square. It is used to describe how much roofing material is needed to cover 100 square feet of a roof. Since materials overlap, it is not exactly 100 square feet of roofing material, but usually a bit more than that.


The angel of your roof is actually referred to as the pitch. There is actually a format that pitch is described in, which is known as an X:12 format. The X stands for the rise and the 12 is the run. This means that if your roof has a 1:12 pitch, it means that the roof rises 1 yard for every 12 yards of roofing material.


A cricket is an odd term for what it describes since it is a triangular slope that is placed around walls and chimneys on your roof. It is designed to divert water so that it doesn't collect on your roof behind this flat structure

Hips And Valleys

A roof valley is where two surfaces of a roof meet to create an interior angle where water can flow down. A hip is where two roof surfaces form to create an exterior angle where water cannot collect. A roofing contractor may use these terms to describe how many hips and valleys are on your existing roof.

Drip Edge

Every roof will have drip edges, which is where your roofing material will end at the roofline. The purpose of the drip line is to prevent water from wicking backward underneath the edge of the roof and getting into the wood roofing material underneath your shingles.

Non-Prorated And Prorated Warranties

A roofing warranty can be described as either non-prorated or prorated. The difference between them is that a prorated roof warranty causes the roof to lose value each year that you own it. If you need to replace the material when the warranty is halfway through, you may only receive half of the roofing material's value. A non-prorated roof warranty means that you will be able to replace a defective roof by having the new replacement material completely covered.

Reach out to your residential roofing contractor if you're confused about any of the terms that they are using.