Roof Valleys And Why They Are Important

Your roof is a complex system, and every component plays a crucial role in safeguarding your home. While shingles and flashing might get the spotlight, roof valleys are the unsung heroes working tirelessly to protect your home from water damage. In this post we’ll take a closer look at a crucial part of your roof that often goes overlooked by homeowners, and problems that can arise if you don’t give it the attention it needs to function properly.

What is a Roof Valley?

Picture your roof as a landscape. Where two sloping planes meet to form an inward angle, you’ll find a roof valley. This V-shaped channel acts as a funnel, directing rainwater and melting snow off your roof and into the gutters. Without them, water could pool, seep under shingles, and cause leaks, leading to costly repairs and potential structural damage.

Why Are Roof Valleys Important?

  • Water Management: Roof valleys are essential for efficient water drainage. They ensure that water doesn’t linger on your roof, where it can wreak havoc.
  • Leak Prevention: A well-constructed and maintained roof valley is your first line of defence against leaks. They prevent water from seeping into your attic or walls.
  • Structural Integrity: By diverting water away, roof valleys protect the underlying structure of your roof and home.
  • Curb Appeal:** While functionality is paramount, roof valleys can also contribute to the overall aesthetics of your roof.

The Different Types of Roof Valleys

There are two main types of roof valleys:

  • Open Valleys: In open valleys, the metal lining is visible. This design is highly effective for water drainage, especially in areas with heavy rainfall or snowfall. They are also easier to inspect and maintain.
  • Closed Valleys: Closed valleys are covered with shingles, creating a more seamless look. However, they require meticulous installation to prevent leaks and may not be as efficient in areas with heavy precipitation.

Common Roof Valley Problems

  1. Leaks: This is the most common issue, often caused by damaged or improperly installed flashing, underlayment, or shingles. In Winnipeg, ice dams can worsen leaks by forcing water up under shingles.

  2. Debris buildup: Leaves, twigs, and other debris can accumulate in valleys, blocking water flow and leading to leaks.

  3. Rust and corrosion: Metal flashing in open valleys can rust over time, compromising its effectiveness.

  4. Shingle damage: Shingles in valleys are prone to wear and tear due to the constant flow of water. Missing granules or curling shingles are signs of damage.

  5. Ice dams: In Winnipeg’s cold climate, ice dams can form in valleys, preventing proper water drainage and causing leaks.

  6. Poor installation: Improperly installed valleys can lead to a host of problems, including leaks, shingle damage, and structural issues.

How Roof Valleys Are Installed

Installing roof valleys requires precision and expertise. Here’s a simplified overview of the process:

  • Underlayment: A waterproof underlayment is laid down to provide an extra layer of protection.
  • Metal Lining: A metal lining (usually aluminum or galvanized steel) is installed to create the valley’s channel.
  • Shingles: Shingles are then carefully woven or cut around the valley to ensure a watertight seal.

How to Maintain Roof Valleys

  • Regular Inspections: Check your roof valleys at least twice a year for signs of damage, such as rust, cracks, or missing shingles. In Winnipeg’s climate, with harsh winters and heavy snowfall, it’s especially important to check for ice dams, which can put extra strain on your roof valleys.
  • Cleaning: Keep valleys clear of debris like leaves and twigs, as these can obstruct water flow and lead to pooling. In autumn, be extra vigilant about clearing away fallen leaves.
  • Prompt Repairs: Address any damage or leaks immediately to prevent further problems. If you notice missing granules on your shingles, it could be a sign of wear and tear that needs attention.

What to Do If You Have a Roof Valley Leak?

If you suspect a leak, it’s crucial to act quickly. Water can quickly cause damage to your home’s interior, leading to mold growth and structural issues. Contact a qualified roofer to assess the situation and recommend the best course of action. Often, a simple repair can fix the problem and prevent further damage.

Regular Roof Inspections and Choosing a Qualified Roofer

Your roof is a valuable asset, and regular inspections are vital to ensure its longevity and effectiveness. A professional roofer can identify potential issues early on, saving you time, money, and stress. When choosing a roofer, prioritize experience, licensing, and insurance. A reputable roofer will stand behind their work and offer warranties for added peace of mind.

Are you concerned about the condition of your roof valleys? Above All is here to help. Contact us today for a comprehensive roof inspection and expert advice on keeping your roof in top shape. Our team of experienced roofers has the knowledge and expertise to ensure your roof valleys are in optimal condition, protecting your home from the elements.

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Schedule a roof inspection today and let Above All give you the peace of mind you deserve.


Q: What exactly is a roof valley, and why should I care about it?

Answer: A roof valley is the V-shaped area where two sloping roof sections meet. It’s designed to channel rainwater and melting snow off your roof and into your gutters. Ignoring your roof valleys can lead to leaks, water damage, and costly repairs down the line.

Q: How do I know if my roof valley is in good condition?

Answer: Regular inspections are key. Look for signs of rust, cracks, missing shingles, or debris buildup. If you live in an area with heavy snow like Winnipeg, watch out for ice dams that can damage valleys. If you’re unsure, a professional roof inspection can provide a thorough assessment.

Q: What should I do if I think I have a leak in my roof valley?

Answer: Act fast! Leaks can cause significant damage quickly. Contact a qualified roofer right away to assess the situation and recommend the best repair options. Don’t wait, as a small leak can quickly escalate into a much bigger problem.