What is a Rake on a Roof and Explanation about It

“What is a rake on a roof,” actually? Many roofing terminologies are hard to understand because they are not commonly used in everyday conversations unless you are a roofer, builder, or constructor. You may find several terms related to the roofing topics are decking, drip edge, eave, underlayment, and so many more.

Rake is one of the roof sections that you may have heard of before. Although it is mainly used to serve an aesthetic purpose, rake boards actually have some functions, such as preventing moisture from entering the roofing system or your home. Find out more about the roof’s rake boards below.

See also : Choose 5 Main Low Sloped Roof Options

What is a Rake on a Roof

So what is a rake on a roof? The extended outer part of the gable roof stretches out from the eave to the ridge, with a drip edge installed on it. In fact, the rake is a term used to refer to the sloped sides at the end of the gable, so it is not exactly on the roof. The rake may overhang at the tip of the gable or not overhang and lying flat.

What is a Rake on a Roof

It is either left open or closed with fascia or soffit. The rake is often designed in such an intricate way. The size and materials vary, but it is commonly made from wood materials. It depends on the builders, as they often have different fascia or trim styles to match with the rest of the buildings. Some homeowners may choose to wrap the rake boards with metal to achieve a more polished look.

See Also : How to Install Drip Edge on Shed Roof

What is a rake on a roof purpose? The purpose of installing a rake board is to prevent roof damage from running or leaking water behind the siding. Moisture is the most common problem, given the purpose of the rake itself. It is necessary to do frequent checks for any damaged, cracked, or rotting rake boards installed on your house.

Pest damage is another problem that is often found in this area. The gaps inside the boards or the missing parts of the fascia or soffit might be used as a nest for insects and animals.

Roof Rake Detail

After knowing ‘what is a rake on a roof’ in general, you may want to understand the further details. Read the following characteristic below to learn about them:


There are three types typically available for roof rakes, which are extended or abbreviated, overhanging and boxed in, and overhanging exposes. Cottages homes or sheds are usually used exposed rakes instead of closed rakes. The overhanging exposes and extended types are usually wider than the boxed-in types with more intricate details.


Depending on the surface that needs to be covered, the rake board sizes also vary in widths. The exposed top edge is usually covered by one 2-inch sized rake board. The larger sizes are available in one 4-inch or one 6-inch. The length of the rake differs according to the length of the gable’s sides.


Rake boards consist of several cuts of different materials such as concrete board, PVC board, smartboard, or wooden materials like pine and cedar. The type of rake board depends on the fascia and trim style used by the builder for the rest of the building.

How to Install Drip Edge on Rake of Roof

Now that you’re getting the hang of what is a rake on a roof and the details of it, you might as well learn how to install drip edge on the boards. This is the step-by-step guide for you to follow.

How to Install Drip Edge on Rake of Roof
  1. Check what type of drip edge you’re using. Different drip edge type requires different installation process.
  2. Start to set the drip edges on the eaves. Place and align it down so the water wouldn’t run through it.
  3. Secure the drip edge using roofing nails in a way that the shingles will cover the nails. You may nail every 12 or 16 inches between each nail.

Each part of the roofing components needs different steps of installation. You also have to do the installation parts in sequence, the roof deck first, underlayment, then drip edges.

Also See : How to Install Drip Edge on Shed Roof with Ease

A detailed explanation about a rake on a roof, its purpose, characteristics, and other information may help you install every section of the roof properly.

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RoofLast is an experienced author and roofing expert. With years of practical experience in the field authored several informative articles on various aspects of roofing, including installation, maintenance, and repair