Roofing drip edge installation

Roofing Drip Edge

What is a drip edge?

Roofing Drip edge is metal flashing installed on the edge of the roof to keep water away from your fascia and from getting underneath your roofing components. Without a drip edge, water may end up beneath the shingles and may cause damage to various parts of the home. Did you know, drip edges are now required by most building codes across North America to protect homes from damage?

Drip edges have two main purposes:

  1. Direct water away from fascia
  2. Protect from wind-driven rain

Here are some more purposes for roofing drip edge:

  • Prevents wind-driven rain from seeping into the wood decking and cause rotting over time.
  • Directs runoff water away from the fascia board and edges of the building. (Similar to a pour spout on a liquid measuring cup.)
  • Protects against insects and pests entering in between the deck and facial boards.
  • Guards against any movement between the deck and facial boards.
  • Helps to protect the edge of the roof during ice dams that can occur during the cold season.
  • Works with the gutter system to move water off the roof.
  • Extends the life of your roof.
  • Helps your roof look complete, neat, and clean.
  • Seals any possible gaps that may occur at the bottom of the roof.
  • Prevents small animals and pests from entering the attic.

How to Install Drip Edge

Drip edges are made of various plastics and metals, which are both accepted under most building codes. Make sure you hold the drip edge tight onto the roof line so it stays nice and tight.

Step one: Install drip edges on the eaves first. Place the drip edge down, aligning it so water will drip into the gutters. The end with the flange or flare should point down and away from the roof.

Step two: Use roofing nails to secure the drip edge. Nail high up on the drip edge so that the shingles will cover the nails. Ideally, you’d nail about every 12 inches, and in no circumstances should you have 16 inches or more between nails. When you place the next drip edge piece, it should overlap the first by an inch.

Step three: When you reach a corner where an eave and rake edge meet, you need to make a cut to ensure a proper fit. First, place your drip edge on the rake edge and then mark where the drip edge begins to overhang, and one inch further out from that overhang.

Step four:  Cut the entire drip edge by your second mark, so that it only hangs past the edge by an inch. Then, cut out the topmost portion of the drip edge by your first mark. Then, make a perpendicular cut, so that you can remove a square of the drip edge.

Step five: Install the drip edge as normal. Then, bend in the flap of the drip edge to form a corner. You will complete this corner when you install the drip edges on the rakes.

Step six: Once you’ve covered the eaves with a drip edge, it’s time to install your underlayment. This way, the underlayment is over the drip edge on the eaves, but under the drip edge on the rakes.

Step seven: Then install drip edges on the rakes using nails.

Step eight: When you get to a corner where the rake and eave edge meet, simply install the rake’s drip edge on top of the flap you left when installing the eave’s drip edge.

Step nine: When you reach the roof’s ridge, you need to make yet another cut in your drip edge. Hold the drip edge up to the ridge and make a mark along where the drip edge exceeds the roof. Make a straight cut through the bottom of the drip edge with your tin snips.

Step ten: Fold the drip edge to fit over the ridge. Mark the plumb line, or centerline, as in the image below. Cut the topmost part of the drip edge along this line to create a finished look. Place a single nail in the outside piece to hold the drip edge in place.

What are the different types of drip edges?


These roof drip edges are curved like the letter and roll water away from the roofing deck. They are placed under the roofing material, under the decking. C-shaped edges are often used for roofs with no fascia boards.


L-shaped drip edges are bent in the center, forming a 90-degree angle. One end of the “L” is placed under the roofing material, while the other on top of the fascia. These are advisable to use on a low-incline roof.


The T-shaped drip edges are more complex compared to the first two mentioned. It is the most efficient at keeping water away from your shingles, straight to the gutter. T-style drip edges use an extra piece to form a triangular shape between the roof deck and your house.

Can I install my own drip edge?

If you’ve got the time and the skill, you can definitely install a drip edge on your roof and shingles yourself.

As you can see in our 10 Step Guide to installing a drip edge though, it’s not an easy feat. Having said, it’s still best to let an experienced professional take care of your roof drip edge.

To save you the fuss, these roofing woes should be left to the experts!

Are you ready to get some roof drip edges installed? Just remember, they are as important to consider as your roof’s shingles themselves.

Having a good and long-lasting roof, shy away from possible damages can save you a lot of money!. It is best to be cautious, rather than to regret a future costly repair.

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