Most property owners think of their roofs as shingles covering the top of their homes or a membrane or other surface topping a commercial roof. In reality, several layers comprise roofs of all types. One of those layers is the underlayment, which plays a critical role in keeping your building safe from the elements.

What Is Roof Underlayment?

Roofing underlayment lies between the roof deck and the shingles or other material that makes up the roof’s top layer. Underlayment is installed directly on the roof deck, acting as a secondary moisture barrier that protects your building from rain, snow, and wind. Its essential job is to prevent leaks, mold, and water damage from entering the interior of your home or business.

The roof deck is generally constructed of plywood, oriented strand board (OSB), or step sheathing. These boards fasten to the rafters or trusses to provide structure to the entire roof.

Types of Roof Underlayment

Felt is one of the oldest types of underlayment, created by saturating a paper or fiberglass mat with asphalt. Recent advancements in underlayment have created several types of underlayment, each with its own pros and cons. Selecting the proper underlayment for your roof is just as crucial as choosing the right shingles. Most underlayments fall into three categories.

Asphalt-Saturated Felt

Sometimes called felt paper or tar paper, roofing felt underlayment comprises various combinations of asphalt, polyester, natural plant fibers, bitumen, and fiberglass. It’s available in 15- and 30-pound variations to enhance your roof’s strength and water resistance. Asphalt-saturated felt is the most budget-friendly option for property owners needing new underlayment and is ideal for steeply sloped roofs. However, it’s not entirely waterproof, so it’s not a good choice for flat commercial roofs where water can pool and infiltrate your roofing structure. The asphalt can also wear down over time or with direct sun exposure.

Rubberized Asphalt Underlayment

The name of this underlayment is slightly misleading as some manufacturers do not include asphalt in its composition. It’s one of the newer and more enhanced options available, generally made with recycled rubber, polyethylene, polyester, and fiberglass. Our roofers apply it in large panels and then fuse it into one seamless member with no cracks to create an air-tight seal. Because of its rubber-like flexibility, this underlayment is ideal for our Indiana climate, which experiences extreme summer and winter temperatures. It’s also self-adhering, waterproof, and easy to customize and install on oddly shaped roofs.

Non-Bitumen Synthetic Underlayment

This choice has surged in popularity recently for those needing roof replacements because of its high-performance ratings. Non-bitumen underlayment is made from thermoplastics like polyethylene or polypropylene and is highly waterproof, flexible, and mold-resistant. The major difference between non-bitumen and rubberized asphalt is the use of synthetic construction in non-bitumen underlayment, making it very lightweight, long-lasting, and resistant to ultraviolet rays. However, non-bitumen is more expensive and less budget-friendly than the other two alternatives.

The Benefits of a Roofing Underlayment

Underlayment works together with other parts of your roof to keep your home or business safe. However, adding this additional layer when you get roofing installation or repair from Taylor Made Roofing & Construction, Inc. in Indiana can provide you with myriad benefits:

  • Heightens curb appeal by providing a better exterior aesthetic
  • Helps meet local fire safety requirements
  • Provides additional weather protection
  • Provides an additional barrier against moisture
  • Makes your building more energy efficient
  • Provides additional protection from ice and water damage in the winter
  • Protects the roof deck from water or air infiltration
  • Increases your peace of mind

By installing underlayment with the help of experienced professionals like Taylor Made Roofing & Construction, Inc., your roof will remain strong and reliable for many years.

Find Comprehensive Roofing Services From Taylor Made Roofing & Construction, Inc.

Our team of highly skilled and experienced roofers at Taylor Made Roofing & Construction, Inc. has been providing top-quality roofing services to both residential and commercial clients in Morgantown and the surrounding areas for over 25 years. We provide roofing inspections, commercial and residential repair, and replacement for all kinds of roofs, along with commercial storm damage consultation and roofing services for new construction projects. We also offer shingles and interior and exterior painting services for our clients.

Contact our office today to get started on your roofing consultation or to schedule our superior painting services.

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