I called White Castle Roofing and got some samples, and now I’ve picked out some shingles. That’s it, right?

Nebraska may be the good life, but the elements can be anything but nice to your roof. From the super-cold snow and ice to the spring showers (and summer winds) to the fall leaves that look gorgeous until they clog up your gutters, your roof can take a beating! Properly installed and maintained, a good White Castle roof can last for a few decades — but it takes more than shingles to make sure you and your home stay snug and safe under your roof.

So what all is White Castle Roofing putting up there? Glad you asked.

Anatomy diagram

Your roof, with X-ray vision.

The first layer is your roof decking. This is the layer of wood that sits beneath the shingles. It is generally made of plywood or OSB sheeting, to which the shingles are attached. When we do a re-roof, after we tear off the old shingles, the first thing we do is check over your roof decking to make sure it’s solid, sturdy, and will make a good base for everything that goes on top of it.

In other words: it’s your roof’s underwear…unseen, but of vast importance.

The next thing we put on is ice and water shield, a self-sealing membrane used to protect especially vulnerable areas from moisture. It’s applied at the roof edge and around chimneys, skylights and valleys. If your roof is getting dressed, this is its socks.

Next up is roofing felt. This is a special material that provides a barrier against moisture between shingles and the roof deck. Once upon a time, this was actual felt, but thanks to some awesome achievements in technology, now we use a lighter, stronger synthetic felt for this layer. This is your roof’s undershirt, to keep you from looking like Sean Miller during the NCAA tournament this year. No one wants that.

After all those layers, we put on shingles. We’ve been over the different types of residential shingles, so your main job here is to pick out what’s best for your home, your style and your checkbook. This is your roof’s clothing — totally expressive of your tastes, while serving the critical function of keeping you warm or cool, covered, and looking great.

But we’re not done yet! We also install metal valleys and drip edge flashing. Metal valleys are used in the seam where two roofs intersect. They carry the water downward towards the gutter to help protect against leaks in these areas. Drip edge flashing pushes water away from your home and into your gutters, and adds protection to the underlying roof decking. It’s an essential part of your roof required by home building codes. Think of these as your roof’s hat, and as someone wise once said, your hat is the first thing God sees when you step outside. Humphrey Bogart, Indiana Jones, Coco Chanel, Audrey Hepburn…all iconic hat-wearers.

Where we’re going with this: don’t ignore your metal valleys and drip edge flashing.

So those are the most common, most essential parts of your roof — which, as you can see, are more than just shingles. If you’re the visual type, here’s a handy diagram to help put the pieces together to create a functional, fashionable masterpiece ready for any roofing runway. Have any questions? Shoot our team of roofing specialists a note and we can help you pick out the right roofing components for your home to dazzle your neighbors and keep your stuff safe and sound…

…and maybe even impress our Lord with your fedora game.