If you have a shingled roof, it is important to install a drip edge. A drip edge is a piece of L-shaped or T-shaped metal designed to direct water away from the roof fascia (long board placed on the bottom roof edge) and soffits (eaves). Without proper drainage, water can damage the roof as well as leak in the interior of the home. It doesn't require advanced roofing skills to install a drip edge. Here are some tips to install a drip edge on a shingled roof.
Prepare to Work
For this project, you need:
- safety harness
- work gloves
- tape measure
- felt-tip marker
- wire brush
- metal snips
- roofing cement and caulking gun
- hammer and rust-proof nails
- drip edge
Wear rubber-sole shoes and loose clothing when you work on a roof. Set a ladder in a safe place, and secure a safety harness to the opposite of the work area.
Work on a warm day to help the shingles peel back easier. If the weather has been cool overnight, let the sun warm the roof first.
Cut the Drip Edge Strips
Sweep debris off the roof using the wire brush and broom. Measure the exterior edge of the roof, so you know how much drip edge to buy.
Trim the drip edge strips based on the width of the roof. Place a piece of drip edge on the fascia at the intersection where the horizontal edge intersects the sloped edge. Use the marker to mark the slope on the drip edge strip, and cut the strip to fit.
Install the Drip Edge
Pull back a shingle on the bottom edge of the roof, and insert the flat side of the drip edge under it. If the shingles don't pull up easily, loosen them with a margin trowel. Push the drip edge until it butts out slightly from the other side of the shingle.
Cut the front end of the strip with the metal snips. Wrap the overhang left after cutting around the eave to provide a water-tight seal. Hammer the strip in place with the roofing nails, but not into the fascia.
Apply roofing cement on the nail heads with the caulking gun, and the apply a generous coat of cement along the drip edge strip. Press the shingle back in place. Continue installing drip edge strips overlapping ends by a quarter of an inch.
Installing a drip edge makes the roof last longer. If you don't feel comfortable working from heights, or the roof is seriously damaged, contact a roofer.