Rake Edge Vs. Drip Edge: What’s The Difference?

A home's roofing system comprises several integral components, such as the rake and drip edges. That said, what exactly is the difference between these two elements? We have researched everything you need to know about the topic.

The rake edge is a metal flashing located at the roof's periphery overlapping the fascia board. It directs rainwater and snow to the gutter. The drip edge is the angled part of the rake edge that extends over the fascia and prevents rainwater from dripping through the walls.

Both the rake and drip edge differ in their specific uses. Read on as we talk about your home's roofing system, the distinction between these two elements, and how to install the metal flashing correctly.

Contemporary home showing siding,roof,gutters , Rake Edge Vs. Drip Edge: What's The Difference?

Roof Drainage System

Proper roof drainage systems are essential for homes. They prevent debris from accumulating on your gutter by flushing it down the spout system.

The effects of debris, when not dealt with immediately, can cause structural issues, foundation damage, mold, and mildew. The damage could cost you money. Therefore, getting a proper drainage system helps protect your home and is also financially savvy.

How Do Drainage Systems Work?

The drainage system is an essential aspect of design for every home. Roof drainage systems work using three components: the roof edges, the gutter, and the downspout.

The former is used to direct rainwater onto the gutter to protect the fascia and the other parts of your roofing design.

Gutter system and roof protection on house construction on sky background

Parts Of A Roof

Parts of roof vector illustration.

To fully appreciate the purpose of roof edges, here is a brief explanation of the different components of your roof.


A rafter is a part of a roof's structure divided into 2 x 10 pieces that rests on a ridge board. Traditional rafters connect to the outer walls and roof frame.

Two different kinds of rafters offer structural support and act as the roof's framing. Principal rafters are the most prominent components utilized on each side of the roof construction. The smaller common rafters are positioned in between the principal rafters.


The roof is your home's primary defense against rain, moisture, heat, and dust. The rake edge typically enhances the roof covering's function.

Some common roofing materials are asphalt, clay tile, flat roofs, metal, PVC, rubber, shingle, slate, spray foam, and tar and gravel roofing.


A waterproof substance is used in the roof flashing to direct water flow off the rooftop. Some roof flashing types are base, step, counter, continuous, valley, and kick-out flashing.


A ridge is the highest point of your home where two opposing roof planes meets\. It is a form of metal flashing (rake and drip edge).

It supports your roof structure, which holds the two sloping parts together. Your home's roof may include ridges with air exhaust vents to keep it cool.


The fascia is the wooden board located at the side of the roof. A metal flashing (rake edge) is usually attached to the fascia to protect it against the elements.

However, the fascia can be hard to locate because gutters usually hide them. A fascia's primary purpose is to keep the gutter in place, cover the open rafter ends, and prevent water damage to your roof deck.

The downspout and gutter rely on the fascia for support, since they would hang off the side of a house without them.


The gutter directs rainfall away a the home's foundation via the downspout. Your home may be more susceptible to rusting, rotting, and other problems without gutters.


The downspout is a pipe that connects to the gutter. It reroutes water and securely directs it toward the drainage system.

Click here to buy these downspout extensions on Amazon.

What Are Roof Edges?

Gable with brick and vinyl siding, white frame gutter guard system, fascia, drip edge, soffit, on a pitched roof attic at a luxury American single family home neighborhood USA

Roof edges are designed to protect your roof against moisture damage. Here are two essential components of roof edges:

Rake Edge

The purpose of the rake edge is to direct precipitation and rain away from your roof. Additionally, it assists in keeping your roof dry and performs the critical function of preventing water from entering the fascia.

Regarding water infiltration, the rake edge is a line of defense.

Drip Edge

The purpose of the drip edge is to help the rake edge divert water away from the fascia and your home. Plus, it protects the bottom of the roof line from cold weather and the decking border from moisture.

Check out this roof drip edge flashing on Amazon. 

Difference Between Rake Edge And Drip Edge

The main difference between the rake and drip edge is the placement. The angled metal drains water away from the roof system.


The rake edge's purpose is to prevent moisture from being forced to travel sideways by winds. The rake edge prevents water from getting under the shingles.

The purpose of drip edge is for cold weather. It catches the rain so it won't get behind the edge's barrier and wet the wood.


The drip and rake edge are made of aluminum, galvanized steel, and copper. Remember that materials that prevent water from draining off the roof cannot be at these two edges.

Rake edge metal is bent at a 90-degree angle. For this reason, the structure must correctly lie on top of the roof's gable.

Compared to the rake edge, the drip edge is more resilient. Here, a closure is created at the roof edge's corner by trimming and bending the metal of the drip edge. The edge secures the roof's edges, hiding the shingles.


The installation of the rake edge seals off the underlayment's edges. The primary goal is to stop water from penetrating the underlayment and reaching the roof's wood decking.

Before installing the eave protection, install the drip edge at the eaves. Builders place it here to prevent the water from getting to the wooden base of the roof.

How To Install Roof Edging

roofer installing metal roof drip edge profile

You must proceed beneath along your eaves and above your underlayment along the rake to install your drip edge.

  1. Measure your roof before cutting your drip edge to the precise size of your roof.
  2. Lift the underlayment and tuck it close up against the roof line. Be careful not to extend it over your gable. It is better to be a little bit in than too far out.
  3. Nail your eaves drip every ">16 inches, being careful to hold the drip edge directly onto the roof line.
  4. Attach the rake edge to the roofline and bring it down over the drip edge to the corner.
  5. Cut the end and tuck it around the corner if it sticks out. It will perfectly seal the entire intersection.
  6. Similar to the drip edge along the bottom of your rake edge, nail it at intervals of 16 inches.

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Cost Of Drip Edge

The average cost of installing a drip edge per linear foot is one to two dollars. The roof size, the home's height, and the kind of drip edge you use will affect the installation cost of the drip edge.

If you install the drip edge yourself, the material might cost between three and ten dollars for every 10 linear feet of drip edge. However, working on a roof can be risky, so you should have professionals install your drip edge.

Cost Of Different Types Of Drip Edge

  • Aluminum and galvanized steel drip edges cost around $3 to $10 per linear foot.
  • Copper drip edges costs around $35 to $75 per 10 linear feet.

Cost Of Drip Edge By Style

  • Type C and type F cost around $3 to $10..
  • Type D costs around $10 to $15.

In Closing

The rake edge and drip edge can be confusing to differentiate. Just keep in mind that the latter is a part of the former. The two perform similar functions but with different specific usage. We hope the article helped you understand these two elements.

You might also find these topics informative:

Should House Siding Touch The Shingles?

How To Fix Gaps Between Gutter And Fascia [Step By Step Guide]?

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