Testing Drip Edge Installations on Roofing

Ask This Old House general contractor Tom Silva demonstrates the importance of a properly installed drip edge

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Skill Level: Moderate

Steps:
1. A roof without a drip edge can draw water off the roof into the end grain of the sheathing through surface tension, rotting the sheathing, the fascia, and the structure underneath.
2. A metal drip edge will help protect the sheathing under the roof, but if it’s installed too closely to the fascia board, it can still cause water to be drawn into the fascia.
3. The best installation method is to leave a gap between the drip edge and the fascia board, about the width of a finger. The shingles should also overhang the drip edge 3⁄8 to ½ of an inch.

Resources:
Drip edges and shingles can be found at home centers.

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Homeowners have a virtual truckload of questions for us on smaller projects, and we’re ready to answer. Ask This Old House solves the steady stream of home improvement problems faced by our viewers—and we make house calls! Ask This Old House features some familiar faces from This Old House, including Kevin O’Connor, general contractor Tom Silva, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, and landscape contractor Roger Cook.

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Keywords: This Old House, How-to, home improvement, DIY, tom silva, ask this old house, kevin o’connor, roofing, gutter, drainage, drip edge,

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10 Comments

  1. You should never gap the drip edge, you should only overhang the shingles. His demonstration is flawed. He cut the shingles back on the first 2 so they weren’t protruding past the edge.
    It has nothing to do with gapping the drip edge.

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