Basic Types of Roofs - Hip RoofThere are many different types and styles of roofs to consider when renovating or building a new home. The style of roof you choose for your home will depend on a few different factors including the area you live in, the style of your home, and your design preference. These are the rest of the basic types of roofs, their pros and cons, and the homes they are best suited for, according to Home Improvement Helper.

In this second part of the basic types of roofs series, we will discuss hip roofs, gambrels and mansard style roofs.

The Hip (Hipped) Roof

This is a very common roof type that has a ridge over a portion of the roof creating two polygon sides and two triangle sides. The hip roof does not have flat sides like the gable roof; instead all sides of the roof slope down to meet the walls of the house. There are also variations to the hip roof such as the pyramid hip roof, the cross hipped roof, and the half hipped roof.

  • Pros: The hip roof protects more of the house from elements such as sun, wind and rain which over time can require increased maintenance for the structure. They also offer better internal bracing than most types of roofs and gutters easily attach around the entire house because of its uniform height.
  • Cons: Hip roofs offer less internal roof space offering less potential storage/useable space and making access for maintenance more difficult. Cross hipped and more complex hip roofs require more maintenance and need to have their valleys kept free from debris so that moisture and dirt don’t cause a failure of the valley flashing.
  • Suited for: This type of roof is best suited for contemporary or ranch style homes and are great roofs for homes in areas with high winds or hurricanes, because of their great internal bracing.
  • Not suited for: Home owners looking for a roof that requires less involvement when building should not install a hip roof. Also, hip roofs are not ideal for homeowners that are looking to have the attic as useable space.

The Gambrel Roof

This type of roof has two distinctly different slopes on each of its two symmetrical sides. The bottom slope has a steep pitch, sometimes nearly vertical while the top slope is lower. The gambrel roof utilizes this method on two of the four sides of the house.

  • Pros: Gambrel roofs provide ample room for attic storage, are easy to frame, and offer excellent drainage capability.
  • Cons: These roofs are not tough enough to handle the pressure from heavy snow or winds and they require frequent maintenance.
  • Suited for: Gambrel roofs look great on a variety of house styles, including classic, cottage, and shingle style homes.
  • Not suited for: These roofs are not ideal for areas that experience heavy snowfall or heavy winds.

The Mansard Roof

A mansard roof, also known as a French roof, is a four-sided roof with a double slope on each side that meet forming a low-pitched roof. The lower slope is much steeper than the upper. The sides can either be flat or curved, depending on the style. It is very similar to the gambrel roof style, but this style utilizes all four sides of the house.

  • Pros: Mansard roofs can help create a great deal of extra living space. Using the space as a full attic or living quarters, called a garret, is very popular. They are easy to design and build, and are easy to make additions to.
  • Cons: A low pitched portion of a mansard roof isn’t ideal for areas receiving heavy snowfall, and typically cost more than other roof styles because of the details and materials that go into them.
  • Suited for: Mansard roofs look good on classic and Victorian style homes and offer a unique look to a home.
  • Not suited for: Homes in areas with heavy snowfall are not ideal for mansard roofs.

For project examples and more detailed information about different roofing shapes and styles and determining which ones might best suit your needs, homeowners should contact the roofing professionals at All Weather Tite, we would love to help you with your roofing project!