Different Kinds of Roofing Underlayment and their Advantages & Disadvantages

Different Kinds of Roofing Underlayment and their Advantages & Disadvantages

Why it is required to have Roofing Underlayment?

March 29, 2022 4 Read

Roofing underlayment is not commonly visible or you might never have heard about it! Though, it is an important element of every roofing system.

Roofing underlayment is a rainproof or water-resistant barrier that works as a protective layer against moisture, rain, snow, and wind. Roofers Abilene TX set up it directly on your roof deck and underneath the rest of the roofing materials.

A lot of roof areas need roofing underlayment. Undeniably, shingles cannot defend and protect your roof deck alone.

Remind that shingles are not sealed at all corners, and sturdy winds could lift them. Over time, they become fragile, and the heat of an unventilated attic could roast them. Even they are vulnerable to tear-off or infiltration by wind-driven rain.

Shingles reflect the sun’s rays, fight the wind, and block the rain, though they are only the first defensive line. Consequently, to protect and defend your home effectively, your roofing system requires an underlayment.

Kinds of Roofing Underlayment

  1. Asphalt-Saturated Felt:

A number of mixtures of different natural fibers plus bitumen, polyester, or asphalt compose this kind of underlayment known as “felt paper” or “tar paper”. Typically, it has a base mat or an elastic base layer. Also, manufacturers make it water-resistant by soaking it with asphalt.

Advantages of asphalt-saturated felt:

  • It comes in different thicknesses, so it could adapt to your local weather demands. You might have a variety of choices as they have varying resistances to weather exposure.
  • It is less expensive compared to many other materials
  • Provides a good leakage barrier
  • You could use common tools to install it easily
  • Disadvantages of asphalt-saturated felt:
  • It could be heavy, particularly when you layer it amply to make it effective in harsh climates
  • Its installation could be tough because it is heavier compare to other options
  • It could crack and powder when exposed to cold
  • Its volatile compounds could be dissolve when exposed to heat. As a result, the underlayment could absorb the moisture and break apart.
  • Synthetic Underlayment:

Manufacturers design synthetic underlayment to be installed through the whole roof deck. They saturate or soak them in asphalt, adding fiberglass to give them greater tear-resistance and stability.

Advantages of synthetic underlayment:

  • It is a lightweight and effective water barrier. Therefore, it doesn’t add much weight to your roof
  • When exposed to high winds, it is tear-resistant
  • It does not absorb moisture. Thus, it resists mold and fungal development
  • It will uphold its integrity even when exposed to the cold and don’t weaken as quickly as others
  • Disadvantages of synthetic underlayment
  • It inclines to be more expensive compare to asphalt-saturated felt
  • Require more tools and skills for correct installation

Presently, most roofing experts prefer or are in favor to use synthetic underlayment. Similarly, excellent quality synthetic underlayment such as CertainTeed’s Diamond Deck™ includes scrim reinforcement for added slip resistance.

  1. Rubberized Asphalt:

Rubberized asphalt underlayment has greater ratios of asphalt and rubber polymers, making it waterproof. Often, it has a sticky back with a protective film that roofers take away before installation. This support makes a waterproof seal between the underlayment and the roof deck.

You must add or use this underlayment at basins and spots prone to leakage, like roof protrusions.

Rubberized asphalt advantages:

  • It does a great job of protecting and defending your roof against water damage
  • Water-resistant roofing underlayment at the roof attics is useful in places where winter is extreme. The underlayment will protect the roof deck edge from water destruction
  • It provides much more heat and cold resistance compared to asphalt-saturated felt
  • They have durability and extended life when installed
  • Will, you have to wait before putting in your main roof covering? No problem, this underlayment could be exposed to weather elements for up to 180 days without having significant destruction
  • Rubberized asphalt disadvantages:
  • It could be the only downward of this underlayment, it is the cost since it will be needing a greater amount of investment.
  • How to Choose Roofing Underlayment that is Suitable For Your Roof

When it comes to choosing your underlayment, you opt to consider the price or cost. Knowing your budget first will let you easily decide what underlayment options you could assess.

Of course, finding what works best and is suitable with your roof type is as well critical. For instance, since synthetic underlayment has greater heat resistance, it will work best in metal roofs. Meanwhile, roofing felt underlayment could work well with a conventional asphalt shingle roof.

The core part of the problem is that you never knew from where water entered the house or roof. The water stains of your ceiling make it evident however you have to be very delicate in pinpointing these points.

Furthermore, you must consider the environment where you live and its weather. The underlayment you select must meet the local weather requirements.