What Is A Roof Cricket: Everything You Should Know

Posted on June 27, 2023

Estimated Reading Time : 8 Min.

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What Is A Roof Cricket: Everything You Should Know

A roof cricket is a crucial element that should not be overlooked. Also known as a saddle, a cricket is built to avoid water damage by aiding proper roof drainage. As a roofing specialist, I know the importance of this small but vital structure.

To help you learn more about crickets, I’m here with a comprehensive guide that explains everything homeowners should know about roof crickets. This includes their necessity, benefits, types, and installation costs.

Let’s get started with a simple definition.

? What is a Cricket on a Roof?

A roof cricket is essentially a diversion structure that is installed on the roof to divert rainwater away from the sides of a structure, such as chimneys, skylights, and other protruding objects on the roof. It looks like a small triangle or wedge, and it is usually installed behind the object.

Wondering what a roof cricket looks like? Take a look at the below images of correctly and neatly installed crickets on chimneys and skylights.

roof crickets on chimneys
roof crickets on skylights

Let’s understand the importance of this small structure in detail.

Does Your Roof Need Crickets?

Roof crickets are especially important in areas that experience heavy snowfall or rain. They are installed to protect the roof and other structures from damage caused by rainwater runoff. They are designed to divert water away from the back of chimneys, around skylights, and in flat areas such as dead roof valleys, hips, and roof-to-wall connections.

More importantly, building codes in some areas may require the installation of crickets for specific chimneys or roof protrusions. If your local building code mandates crickets, you’ll need to ensure compliance when remodeling or replacing your roof. It’s essential to consult the building code requirements in your area or consult a reliable local roofing contractor to determine if a roof cricket is necessary.

Let’s learn the crucial benefits of installing crickets on your roof.

Importance of Well-Placed Crickets on a Roof

The primary role of a cricket is to divert rainwater so that it does not pool around specific locations on the roof, like chimneys and dead valleys. This is how these tiny structures can help you:

• Preventing Water Damage

When water is allowed to pool near roof components like chimneys or skylights, it can cause algae, mold, and leaks. Installing a cricket ensures water does not collect at these locations, and is directed to the proper drainage system, reducing the risk of water damage. Without a cricket, water will collect and seep into the roof, causing leaks and structural damage. By diverting water away from roof penetrations, crickets help prevent water damage to roofs, attics, walls, and the foundation.

• Avoiding the Formation of Ice Dams

Roof crickets can also help reduce the chance of ice dams forming on the roof, as they direct water away from any potential blockage points that could cause a buildup of snow and ice once frozen.

• Providing Extra Stability During Storms

Roof crickets also provide extra stability to structures like chimneys during wind and hailstorms. For example, chimney crickets disperse the wind force and absorb hail impacts, reducing the risk of damage to these extensions of your roof.

If your local building codes require it, you should ensure that all protrusions on your roof are properly protected with a cricket or similar structure.

• Extending the Lifespan of Your Roof

Cricket structures can significantly extend the lifespan of your roof by preventing water-related problems. By promoting proper water drainage, crickets help maintain the structural integrity of your roof and prevent premature deterioration. Investing in a roof cricket now can save you from costly repairs and replacements down the line.

So how do crickets work? Let’s find out.

How Do Roof Crickets Work?

It’s all about the structure and placement of the roof cricket. When rainwater flows down the roof, it hits the triangular shape of the cricket and splits into two streams, preventing it from pooling at the base of valleys, chimneys, or skylights. This redirection ensures that water reaches the drainage system effectively.

There are different kinds of crickets based on their placement and material. Let’s understand which roof crickets you might need.

? Different Types of Roof Crickets: Which One Do You Need?

We can categorize crickets in three ways, based on their composition, their location, and the type of roof you have. Here are some of the most common types of crickets used on roofs:

1. Steep Roof Crickets

On steep-sloped roofs, crickets are typically constructed using wood frames covered with metal or asphalt shingles. These crickets are designed in a half-diamond pattern and are commonly used behind chimneys, skylights, and other roof penetrations. Metals like copper or galvanized steel are often used for their durability and resistance to rust and corrosion.

2. Flat Roof Crickets

Flat Roof Crickets

On low-sloped and flat roofs, crickets are built using sloped rigid insulation, which is then covered with a membrane. These crickets are constructed in a triangular or diamond-shaped pattern and have a slope twice that of the roof. They help divert water to drains and scuppers, preventing water accumulation and potential structural damage.

3. Snow Crickets for Metal Roofs

Snow Crickets for Metal Roof

Snow crickets are designed especially for metal roofs and are different from standard roof crickets, usually more durable and resistant to extreme weather conditions. Also known as a snow wedge, this is a common type of snow retention system for metal and slate roofs that prevents ice, snow, and water damage. These crickets have a higher slope than normal crickets, allowing them to divert water and divide melting chunks of snow at a larger scale.

If you think you need these protective structures on your roof, you should understand the installation costs before making a final decision.

How Much Does a Roof Cricket Cost?

If you’re getting your roof repaired, adding a cricket during the process can cost anywhere from $700 to $1,000. Without additional repairs, a cricket installation project ranges from $150 to $500.

The cost of installing a roof cricket can vary depending on several factors. I always advise homeowners to get a free quote from a reputable roofing contractor in our area to get a better idea of the specific costs associated.

Here are some factors that may influence your cost to install a cricket on your roof:

Factors Affecting the Cost to Install a Roof Cricket

The size and complexity of the cricket play a significant role in determining the overall cost of the installation. Smaller crickets can be easy to install and typically come at a lower price point compared to larger or more intricate designs.

Furthermore, the choice of materials can impact the cost of installing a cricket. While asphalt shingles are generally more affordable, materials like metal or copper can be pricier as they offer much better durability and weather resistance.

Another factor that influences the cost is the slope of the roof. Steeper roofs require additional safety precautions and often demand more labor to complete the installation safely and correctly. Roofers may need specialized equipment or harnesses to work on steep slopes, which can result in increased labor costs. Therefore, the steeper the roof, the higher the overall cost of installing a cricket.

Lastly, if you decide to hire a professional to install the cricket, their labor rates will also affect the total cost. Labor rates vary depending on factors such as location, experience, and the complexity of the job. Experienced roofers who specialize in crickets or complex roof designs may charge higher rates due to their expertise. 

Remember, it’s essential to consider the reputation and skill level of the roofing contractor when factoring in labor costs. Additionally, investing in a quality cricket installation is well worth it in the long run. Properly installed crickets made of good-quality materials can save you money by preventing costly water damage repairs down the line.

Let’s see which materials are suitable for building crickets on your roof.

? Choosing the Right Roofing Materials for Your Cricket

The material you choose for your cricket should be solid and durable with a seamless look. Copper is a great option, as it’s naturally resistant to corrosion and rust and suits every type of roof. You may also want to consider composite materials like fiber cement or metal-reinforced plastic for added durability and strength.

# It’s Good to Choose Matching Roofing Materials

When it comes to selecting a roofing material for your cricket, you have a few options. You can choose to match the roofing material used for the rest of your roof, ensuring a cohesive look. This is often the preferred choice for aesthetic purposes and maintaining consistency in the overall appearance of your roof. But make sure the material you select is compatible with the existing roof structure to make installation easier and more cost-effective.

# It’s Even Better to Use Upgraded Materials

Alternatively, you can opt for higher-quality roofing materials for your cricket, such as metal or rubber membranes. Metal roof crickets, like aluminum, copper, or galvanized steel, offer enhanced durability and resistance to rust and corrosion. On the other hand, membranes come with superior waterproofing and impact resistance abilities.

# Consider the Local Climate

When selecting a material for your cricket, always take into consideration the climate in your area. Different materials perform better in certain environments than others, so it’s important to research which one would work best for you before making a decision.

Finally comes the installation. You must select a reliable and reputable contractor for the job, as building and installing crickets requires special skills and substantial experience. 

So now, I’ll share the steps on how to install roof crickets so that you can ensure a flawless installation and oversee the project with some knowledge of what’s happening, what’s missing, and how to keep the costs in check.

? How to Build a Cricket on a Roof

If you are wondering about the installation process, let me help you understand how the pros do it.

Step 1: Taking Measurements

The roofer will begin by measuring the area of the roof where they’ll install the cricket. This determines the exact size and shape of the cricket that needs to be built. The professional will then mark and cut out the shape of the cricket on your roof using a saw or another specific roofing tool.

Step 2: Building the Structure

Once this is done, the professional will build the initial structure or foundation of the cricket with wooden beams. This generally looks like the miniature version of the roof’s rafter and truss framework.

Step 3: Securing Ice and Water Barrier

Next, the roofer will cover the structure with ice and water shields on all three sides. This works like your main roof’s underlayment, which is essential for providing extra protection against water damage. 

Step 4: Installing the Final Covering

Finally, they’ll cover it with asphalt shingles or metal panels, whichever material you have chosen. The roofer will also secure it with a roofing sealant and flashing to make sure all sides are properly sealed against water damage. Voila! The new cricket is ready to protect your home!

When selecting a contractor for installation, it’s important to compare their rates and read reviews to determine which one is best suited for your needs. Additionally, you should always check their credentials and certifications to make sure they are qualified to do the job correctly.

If you want to secure your home with a roof cricket in Hendersonville, TN, you can rely on the team at Trusted Roofing.

Free Roof Consultations and Estimates

At Trusted Roofing, we take pride in providing reliable and proficient services to all our customers. With decades of experience and advanced training, our highly skilled experts offer top-class craftsmanship that’s also cost-effective. As a go-to choice for our community, we focus on providing 100% satisfaction with our customized, creative, and tidy roofing solutions. So if you’re looking for roof cricket installation or a roof replacement service in Hendersonville, or the surrounding area, call us at (615)-714-4300. We will be happy to help you with a free consultation and estimate.

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(629) 239-1101


Call US: (629) 239-1101

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