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What Is A Pitched Roof

Historic Expressions Of Roof Pitch

What is a Pitched Roof? Construction of Pitched Rood

Historically, roof pitch was designated in two other ways: A ratio of the ridge height to the width of the building and as a ratio of the rafter length to the width of the building.

Commonly used roof pitches were given names such as:-

  • Greek: the ridge height is 1/9 to 1/7th the span
  • Roman: the ridge height is 2/9ths to 1/3 the span
  • Common: the rafter length is 3/4 the span
  • Gothic: the rafters equal the span and
  • Elizabethan: the rafters are longer than the span .

Standard Roof Pitch For House

For a typical roof pitch to use for a traditional house, you should start with the 4/12 pitch cited above, but anything falling in the range between 4/12 and 9/12 is pretty common. If your pitch is lower, you will see it sporting a slight angle, hence the term low-slope roofs for them.

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Very Low Roof Pitches: 25/12 To 3/12

Roof pitches with lower angles, such as 1/12 up to 3/12 are found in more urban, contemporary style houses and in industrial buildings and shacks. It was fashionable for modern-style homes built in the 1960s to have little pitch, just a barely negligible slope to help drain water. Visually, this roof appears flat. This pitch might be as low as 1/12. The flat roofing materials most appropriate to these shallow-sloped roofs include:

  • Built-Up Roofing: Sometimes calledtar-and-gravel, or BUR, the modern form of this kind of roof consists of alternating layers of bitumen and reinforcing fabrics.
  • Torch-Down Roofing: This is a single layer membrane-style roofing material that is heat-activated by a torch during installation.
  • Rubber Membrane: EPDM is a true rubber that can be applied to a roof with glue or mechanical anchors.
  • Standing Seam Metal: These roofs are made from panels of aluminum or steel joined together in raised seams. They can be used on roofs with pitches as low as .25 /12. They are also used on much steeper roofs.

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Is A 3/12 Roof Pitch Good

Any roofs up to 3:12 are generally considered low slope. In the residential arena, we see lower slope roofs as part of the homes architectural design. Then, when you get into roofs of 3:12 or greater pitch, most other metal roofs can be used and that generally is the pitch requirement for asphalt shingles as well.

What Is The Best Pitch For A Roof

Pitched Roof

The best roof pitch depends on the style of roof you are going for. If you are looking for a sleek, modern style, a flat roof with a pitch of 1:40 should be used.

For a Gothic style, the rafters must equal the span , while an Elizabethan style requires the rafters to be longer than the span.

In snowy areas, your roof should be at least 10/12 to allow snow to shed, while the safest roof pitch in very windy areas is between 4/12-6/12 .

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What Is A Pitched Roof

A Pitched Roof is a roof that has slopes downwards, typically in two halves at an angle from a central ridge, but sometimes in one part, from one edge to another.

A roof can be classified as a pitched roof when the pitch of the roof is greater than 10°.

But, it should not be more than 70°, else it will be counted as a wall.

The roof is the uppermost part of a building constructed in the form of a framework so that the building is protected from heat, rain, snow, wind, and other climatic factors. The roof also aids in maintaining the internal environment of the house by resisting heat loss.

There are different pitched roof types like gable roofs, Couple Roof Truss, hip roofs, Queen Post Roof Truss, gambrel roofs, dome roofs, and mansard roofs.

Pitched roofs construction is used in workshops, factories, cinema halls, auditoriums, go-downs, warehouses, hangars, villages, and in hilly regions.

For thermal insulation, a false ceiling is also constructed in pitched roof design.

  • dual pitched roof

The Benefits Of Each Pitched Roof Style

Each roof style that you go for has its own unique nature to it, whether its cut or truss. We want to look at what makes it possible now to actually make your choice and ensure that you go with the right kind of roof pitch.

Cut Roofs

  • Typically, cut roofs are made up from joists and rafters and are made to ensure that there isnt an outward spread of the rafters, as well as offering high levels of support for the ceiling below the roof.
  • Rafter sizes tend to differ massively, and will normally be determined by finding out the length from the wall plate to the ridges, as well as the type of roof covering that is being used.
  • Most people try and keep the cross section of any rafters as small as possible, as they can be very expensive to put together. Youll usually be going for an average spacing in your rafters of 16, as this allows for a more solid form of batten to be used to help strengthen the roof and support the pitch.
  • Once the roof is actually put together, though, it would be foolish to try and change or modify it in any way, shape, or form. Make sure that you leave the roof just as it is come the end of construction if you want it to retain its original look and style.

Truss Roofs

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Roof Slope Calculator Example Of Use

  • Measure the run length it is the horizontal distance between the roof ridge and the wall of the building. Let’s assume it is equal to 6 m.

  • Measure the rise of your roof. Let’s say it is equal to 1.5 m.

  • Calculate the rafter length, substituting these values into the following formula:

    rafter² = rise² + run² = 1.5² + 6² = 2.25 + 36 = 38.25

    rafter = 38.25 = 6.18 m

  • Calculate the roof pitch as the proportion of rise and run:

    pitch = rise / run = 1.5 / 6 = 25%

  • Recalculate this value into an angle:

    angle = arctan = arctan = 14°

  • Finally, you can find the roof pitch in the form of x:12.

    x = pitch * 12 = 0.25 * 12 = 3

  • The pitch of your roof is 3:12. It can also be written down as 25% or 14°.

  • Roofing Materials At A Glance

    Building a Pitched Roof

    Most roof materials have a recommended pitch range for which they are most appropriate. The rules can occasionally be broken, but generally, you should not exceed the low range of the recommendation.

    For example, wood and slate shingles might work for roofs steeper than the top recommendation of 12/12, but you should not install them below the 4/12 lower range.

    • Built-Up : .25/12 to 3/12
    • Torch-down roofing: .25/12 to 3/12
    • Rubber membrane: .25/12 to 3/12
    • Standing-seam metal: 1/12 to 19/12
    • Clay or cement tiles: 2.5/12 to 19/12
    • Asphalt shingles: 4/12 to 20/12
    • Wood and slate shingles: 5/12 to 12/12

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    What Is A 4/12 Roof Pitch

    A 4/12 is a roof slope that rises by 4 inches for every 12 inches across. This forms an angle of 18.5° between the horizontal section and the roof, and creates a gentle incline that is seen as a midpoint between a low-pitch and medium-pitch roof. A 4/12 slope is enough to accommodate water runoff, but is not suitable for regions that are affected by heavy snowfall. Standard asphalt and composition shingles are the best for a 4/12 roof rubber and wood shingles are unsuitable.

    What Is The Smallest Pitch Of A Roof

    The smallest pitch of a roof is 0.5/12. A completely flat roof is a poor design, as water and snow will collect on it, eventually leading to your roof collapsing in from the weight of it all.

    A common choice for flat roofing material is EPDM rubber, as it is highly durable, waterproof, and can be made from recycled materials. Flat roofs also tend to be cheaper and require less maintenance than traditional roofing, making them a perfect addition to your home.

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    Why Is Roof Pitch Important

    Roof pitch is mainly intended to allow run-off of rain and snow. Most of the time, areas where higher levels of snow or rainfall are common prefer to build roofs with steeper pitch. Well-built roofs are designed to prevent pooling of water or accumulation of snow, as over time, these can cause roof damage, from mold and leaks to cracks, or even collapse. Many states, particularly northern states where snowfall is a normal occurrence, include minimum pitch levels in their building codes. This insurance carrier gives some general guidelines on calculating safe snow load for homeowners dealing with a surprise heavy snowfall that some areas have experienced in the last few years.

    What Is Pitched Roof


    When the angle of inclination of a roof exceeds about 10° with the horizontal it is known as a pitched roof. Pitched roofs may have their slope on both sides or they may be slopping in one direction only. The angle of slope is increased proportionally with the increase of conditions like wind, rain, and also snowfall. But the slope should not exceed 60°.

    Pitched roof is made from timber, structural steel, RCC, prestressed concrete. Pitched roof is the only roof used in hilly areas and where subjected to extreme winds, rains, and snowfalls. It is also used for roofing large spanned structures like factory buildings, warehouses, workshops, etc.

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    Types Of Pitched Roofs:

    Mono Pitched Roofs:

    A roof that only has one pitch or slope. For a mono-pitched roof, the roof slopes from one side of the structure to the other.

    Couple Roofs:

    The simplest of pitched roofs to design as there are only 2 lengths of timber tied together as they lean against each other. The span is small, only 3.5 metres, as there is little support. They are easy to design but lack practicality and other costs to additional supports.

    Closed Couple Roofs:

    A closed couple roof is similar to a couple roof with joists connecting the bottom of both rafters. This creates a much more stable and secure roof structure, increasing the roof span to roughly 5 metres.

    Collar Roofs:

    Similar to closed couple roofs, a collar roof moves the joists upward from the bottom of the rafters to roughly a third of the roofs height. Collar roofs meant extra rooms could be created in the roof space, but this decreases the supporting walls stability, reducing the roofs span to 4 metres.

    Purlin Roofs:

    Again, this type of roof is has developed from the closed couple roof by adding purlins to the rafters. A Purlin is a horizontal piece of wood or metal attached to each rafter to provide extra support. This meant rafter materials could be smaller and lighter, allowing for greater roof span of up to 8 metres.

    Large Section Trusses


    Trussed Rafter:

    Flat Roof Vs Pitched Roof: Whats The Difference

    Jan 15, 2021 | Roofing

    Did you know that the global roofing market was worth more than $100 billion in 2020?

    Choosing the shape, such as flat roof vs pitched roof, material, and color of your roof, will have implications for many other aspects of the roof, such as how much it costs, how long-lasting it is, and how efficient it is for your home.

    At the end of the day, you want a roof that looks good, is long-lasting, is inexpensive, works with your homes temperature fluctuations, doesnt need a lot of maintenance, and is cheap to repair.

    If youre in the process of building a new building, whether commercial or residential, you might be wondering what kind of roof is right for you.

    When deciding on a roof, it is essential to choose the type that will fit your needs the best. You basically have a choice of two between pitched roofs and flat roofs. Here is our flat roof vs. pitched roof guide so that you can make a well-informed decision.

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    Combination Of King Post And Queen Post Roof Truss

    Combination of King Post and Queen Post Roof Truss

    Queen post roof truss cannot be provided for spans exceeding 12 meters. To strengthen its structure, both king post truss and queen post truss are combined to obtain this truss.

    An upright vertical member at each side is provided to this type of truss that is called princess post.

    It may be adopted for a span up to 18 metres.

    Introduction To Pitched Roof

    What is a? Pitched/Gable/Hip/Dutch Gable Roof.

    The use of pitched roofs for buildings with long spans and irregular plans should be avoided. This is because irregular buildings have to take into account many elements such as valleys, gutters, and humps.

    The roof has been a structural component for residential since the beginning of culture.

    The roof provides protection to the occupants of the building against adverse external atmospheric and contact conditions. It also provides privacy to those who live in it.

    For construction, it is necessary to consider the factors for roof design, among which, gutter line, electrical line, plumbing line, rainwater line, etc. are important in residential construction. Excellent external factors and the use of different roofing materials should be carefully studied for excellent roof construction.

    The design of the drainage depends largely on the slope of the roof. Roofs are classified into two categories. Flat roof and pitched roof

    In a pitched roof, the roof is held in a slope from one sidewall to the other.

    In earlier times, pitched roofs were made using wood. Now designed for pitched roofs in modern times.

    This type of roof looks very attractive. The pitched roof is widely used as it gives a decorative effect to traditional and modern homes.

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    What Is The Roof Pitch

    Roof pitch is simply the slope created by the rafter. It can be assessed in two ways either as the angle the rafter makes with the horizontal or the proportion between the rise and the run of the roof.

    Roof pitch is often expressed as a ratio between rise and run in the form of x:12. For example, a pitch of 1:12 means that for every twelve yards of building length, the rise will be equal to one yard.

    We can divide roofs into the following categories:

    • Flat roofs are not perfectly flat in reality they need a small slope for water runoff. Generally, these roofs have a pitch from 1/2:12 to 2:12 .
    • Low pitched roofs have the pitch below 4:12 . These are generally difficult to maintain, as they require special materials to avoid leaks.
    • Conventional roofs have the pitch ranging from 4:12 to 9:12 . They are the easiest ones to construct, and they are safe to walk on.
    • High-pitched roofs often require additional fasteners. They have a pitch that can be as high as 21:12 .

    Hip Girder Types Roof

    Hip Girder Roof Truss

    The top pointed apex is converted into a flat apex in the hip girder truss.

    The flattening of the apex allows a hip girder truss to bear more loads. It also imparts stability to the roof truss.

    The structural design is adopted from how roof truss, or more precisely double how roof truss. The top chord rafters are flattened between the first vertical members from the center.

    It is provided at places where high winds and hurricanes are a frequent event as truss has great resistance to them.

    Hip Girder roof truss can effectively span over 5-8 metre.

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    What Does A 4/12 Pitch Mean

    A roof that rises 4 inches for every 1 foot or 12 inches of run is said to have a 4 in 12 slope. The slope ratio represents a certain amount of vertical rise for every 12 inches of horizontal run. For example, a 4 in 12 slope can be expressed as the ratio of 4:12. A 6 in 12 slope is expressed as 6:12.

    Best Roofing Material For A Low Pitch Roof

    Benefits of a Pitched Roof

    Low-pitch roofs have the same material options as regular roofs There are fewer viable possibilities with highly high pitches, but modest slopes are not an issue.

    Here are some examples:

    Built-up roofing often known as tar and gravel

    Torch-down roofing a single-layer membrane installed with the seams sealed by fire

    EPDM roofing a type of rubber roofing that is bonded or mechanically connected to the roof surface.

    Raised seams in standing-seam metal roofing filter water down through gutter-like valleys built of steel or aluminum.

    Asphalt shingles comparable to rolled roofing however, they come in big rolls. It comes in many colors and styles, and it is sometimes peel-and-stick.

    See more related content in our article about the different types of roof shingles on this page.

    See more

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    What Roof Pitch Is 30 Degrees

    A 30° roof pitch is roughly the same as a 7/12 roof pitch. To convert from degrees to the American ratio:

  • Find the tangent of the angle, tan. This gives you the pitch of the roof.
  • Multiply the pitch by 12 to find the x in the ratio x/12.
  • Check your results with the Omni Roof Pitch Calculator.
  • Enjoy having one less thing to worry about.
  • What Is The Standard Pitch For A Roof

    What is the standard pitch for a roof? There is no set definition of what categorises a pitched roof, but generally the pitch needs to be at least 10°, although a common pitched roof would sit around 48°.

    When comparing a pitched roof and a flat roof it can get confusing, as technically flat roofs arent actually flat. A flat roof has the appearance of being flat but needs to allow for water to run off, so it always has a slight slope. Generally, this slope is roughly 1.15° but can be anything under 10°. So, when youre asking, what is a pitched roof? its not any roof with a pitch, the pitch has to be over at least 10°.

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