License #: RR806719

Understanding Roofing Underlayment: Types, Functions, and Selection Guide

asphalt roofing

A successful roofing project goes beyond selecting the perfect shingles, as every layer of your roofing system is crucial to achieving a durable, long-lasting, and energy-efficient roof. One critical yet often overlooked component is the roofing underlayment. This protective layer lies beneath the shingles, providing an extra barrier against water intrusion, moisture, and other potential damages. Apart from its protective functions, it also plays a role in improving the overall performance of your roofing system.

At S.A.M. Shingles & More, we are committed to empowering homeowners with valuable information to help them make informed decisions related to their roofing projects. In this article, we will delve into the world of roofing underlayment, discussing its function, common types, and how to choose the best option for your specific roofing needs. As we explore the nuances of this essential roofing component, our goal is to help you create a more durable, efficient, and long-lasting roofing system that serves you and your family well over time.

1. The Critical Functions of Roofing Underlayment

Roofing underlayment serves several vital purposes in the overall performance and durability of your roof:

– Waterproof Barrier: The primary function of underlayment is to offer a layer of protection against water infiltration, helping to prevent leaks, rot, and other moisture-related issues in your roofing system.

– Enhanced Energy Efficiency: High-quality underlayment can help regulate your home’s temperature, reducing energy costs by counteracting heat transfer between the roof and your living spaces.

– Improved Shingle Adhesion: Underlayment materials can assist in proper shingle adhesion, ensuring that your roof’s primary protective layer remains secure and effective over time.

– Added Wind Resistance: By acting as a secondary barrier against wind-driven rain and debris, underlayment further contributes to your roof’s overall resilience against extreme weather conditions.

2. Common Types of Roofing Underlayment

When it comes to selecting the right underlayment for your roof, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the various options available, each with its own set of benefits and limitations:

– Felt Underlayment: Also known as Tar Paper or Felt Paper, this traditional option is made from heavy-duty asphalt-coated paper. Felt underlayment is an affordable choice that provides basic protection against water and moisture, though it may not offer the same level of performance as more modern materials.

– Synthetic Underlayment: As a more advanced option, synthetic underlayment is manufactured from engineered materials, such as polyethylene or polypropylene. Synthetic options are highly resistant to water and moisture, durable, lightweight, and often possess better breathability compared to felt.

– Rubberized Asphalt Underlayment: Combining the benefits of asphalt and rubber, this type of underlayment boasts excellent adhesive properties and increased waterproofing capabilities. However, it is typically more expensive than the other options.

3. Factors to Consider When Choosing Roofing Underlayment

To determine the ideal underlayment for your home, keep the following factors in mind:

– Local Climate: Areas with heavy rainfall, extreme temperatures, or high wind incidence require an underlayment with enhanced water and weather resistance.

– Roof Slope: Steeper roofs need underlayment that offers strong adhesive properties, as water runs off more quickly, reducing the risk of moisture infiltration.

– Shingle Materials: Premium shingles or heavy materials, such as metal or tiles, may necessitate a more robust underlayment to provide optimum support and protection.

– Manufacturer Recommendations: Be sure to consult the guidelines provided by your shingle manufacturer, as some warranties may specify the use of particular underlayment products to maintain coverage.

4. Working with Roofing Professionals

To ensure that you select the perfect underlayment for your home and that it’s properly installed, it’s crucial to work with experienced roofing professionals like S.A.M. Shingles & More:

– Expert Guidance: An experienced roofer can help you assess your specific needs, local climate, and budget to recommend the best type of underlayment for your home.

– Precise Installation: Proper underlayment installation is essential for effective long-term performance. A skilled roofing contractor can ensure accurate, efficient, and secure placement.

– Maintenance and Repairs: Partnering with a trusted roofing company allows for seamless access to routine inspections, maintenance, and repairs, helping to maintain and prolong the lifespan of your underlayment and overall roofing system.


Selecting the right roofing underlayment can greatly impact the longevity, functionality, and overall performance of your roof. By understanding the various types, their functions, and factors to consider when choosing the best option for your home, you can make an informed decision that will contribute to a more durable and efficient roofing system. Trusting professional guidance and expert installation from a reputable roofing company, like S.A.M. Shingles & More, can further ensure that your investment enjoys optimal protection for years to come.

Ready to explore the ideal roofing underlayment solution for your home? Reach out to the knowledgeable and dedicated residential roofing team at S.A.M. Shingles & More. We’re here to guide you through the process, ensuring you achieve a durable and efficient roofing system with the right underlayment choice.


    About S.A.M.

    Look no further than S.A.M. - Shingles And More! We are your roofing experts, specialized in shingle selection, roof replacement, and everything in between. At S.A.M., we believe that every roof tells a story, and we're here to ensure yours is one of strength and style. So, whether it's a minor repair or a complete transformation, trust Sam's expertise to protect your home and make it look its best!


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