How to Install Drip Edge Flashing on a Shingle Roof

What is a drip edge?

Drip edges are a crucial part of a well-installed shingle roof. Drip edges generally come in 10 feet length. Now, keep in mind, we’re in Southern California, so the codes around the country may vary. But in my opinion, drip edge is required everywhere. I know that in some states and cities, they don’t always install them, but definitely a requirement to have a well-installed roof and is required by the shingle manufacturers. Drip edges come in three colors: standard, which comes in white, brown, and charcoal. An important part of the drip edge flashing, it’s a 90 degree piece of metal, that has a small kick at the bottom. What this kick does, is allows the water to actually come off the roof, instead of continuing down on your fascia board.

If you have gutters installed too, this is great because what it does, the gutter gets tucked in underneath here, and make sure the water flows properly into the gutter and not come on your fascia board. Drip edge flashings come in different sizes. We like to use a 2 inch by 2 inch drip edge. What this does, it’s small enough where it looks slick on the roof, and it’s also large enough to properly waterproof. Let’s get into, and I’ll show you how to properly install these.

How to start installing drip edge flashing

We want to press this up against the fascia board and leave a slight gap, in order to later be able to slide flashing up and underneath. And we’re gonna be installing it using a coil nail gun. So you wanna put nails about every 10 to 12 inches. So we’re gonna put another one here.

How to install drip edge at a corner

One thing you can see here, we cut this kick in order to be able to bend it, so let’s bend it right here. If we didn’t cut this bottom kick right here, then we would have bent this flashing incorrectly. So you can see now that we come to a 90-degree angle, we have a nice clean corner right here, and we’re able to install that right tight up against it.

Again, you always wanna make sure you leave a slight gap between your fascia board and your drip edge, so you can slide your gutters up and underneath afterwards.

Tips for joints and overlapping two pieces of drip edge

Over here, you can see we have a ten inch overlap. That’s okay, generally, we need a minimum of three to four. More doesn’t hurt, and you wanna make sure you have a clean line right here, at that joint. Now, one thing you wanna be aware of is, on a real world or real install, you wanna make sure that your lines are placed in such places where it’s aesthetically pleasing. So if you have the front of your house, maybe your entrance way, you don’t wanna have a joint right there. Generally, you wanna start off with a full piece, then throw your joints at the corners. Let’s continue installing.

How to install drip edge at a valley and rake

So in this corner here we have both a valley that we’re terminating our drip edge into, and also a rake. So on the rake side, what we wanna do is, since we’re installing our drip edge before we install our underlayment, we wanna just come up 6 to 8 inches up our rake. Then later, after we install our underlayment, we’re gonna install the drip edge flashing on the rake, on top of the underlayment. And also on this valley side, we’ve got our eave that’s terminating into the field. We’ve cut this drip edge here, and we wanna have a half inch gap or quarter inch gap between our roof and our drip edge here. You can see we have a gap here, that way later on, we’ll be able to slide flashing underneath here.

We’ve got our nails installed every 10 inches, 10 to 12 inches on center. And now we’re ready to get going with our underlayment.

How to install drip edge with underlayment

As I explained before, when installing drip edge flashing, you wanna have your underlayment going over the drip edge at the eave. Then on your rakes, this is very important, you wanna make sure that your drip edge is coming on top of your underlayment. If you have any wind-driven rain coming in from the side, you want it to come on top of the drip edge, and flow all the way down. So we’ll install our first piece here. Now, let’s say, for example, this is the front of your house, you wanna make sure that this piece is a full piece. You don’t wanna have a small piece here. So if you’re able to, always install your drip edge in full length. Just for aesthetic purposes, has nothing to do with water-proofing.

So you can see here, we’ve notched the top of this, create a little slit, so that we’re able to bend it to the correct angle that we want it to. And when installing and fabricating this drip edge, you wanna make sure that this joint is as straight as possible. You want it to have a vertical line, as opposed to having it crooked, just for aesthetics again. Again, this is one of the most visible areas of your roof, and on your rakes, you generally don’t have gutters. So on your eaves if you’re installing gutters, the lines and the joints are not that much of a concern. But your rakes are generally gonna be exposed, so you wanna make sure that you line up correctly. Also, having full pieces at the top side is generally nicer in my opinion, and having a joint at the bottom is acceptable.