Roof is the finishing structure of a building, a crown. It protects from weather and thermally insulates, while completing the house design. Roofing is the exposed coating of the roof, though it often refers to the roof as a whole.
To select the best fitting roof for any project, one should consider its various designs and respective specifics.
Roof types by structural solution:
Garret roofs to cover living or auxiliary rooms. Garret roofs may be insulated or non-insulated, which defines the possibility to use the space beneath in the cold season.
Open roofs which may be ventilated, partially ventilated or non-ventilated, according to ventilation availability for the space beneath.
Roof types by slope:
1. Flat. Although called flat, these roofs are slightly sloping (max. 3%) for water disposal. According to the application, flat roofs can be either:
- accessible or terrace rooftops covered with lawn, vegetation, earth fill, flooring or terrace materials, or even a swimming pool; intended for sports, exhibitions, playgrounds, recreation areas; accessible from inside of the buildings;
- non-accessible rooftops not intended for regular use.
2. Sloping roofs are more commonly used for individual houses and other low-rise buildings.
Sloping roofs can be classified by pitch as steep-slope roofs or low-slope roofs, accordingly. The latter generally hardly have any loft space, but allow full-size rooms underneath.
Sloping roof types according to geometric design:
- Shed roof consisting of a single slope resting on walls of different height.
- Gable roof consisting of two sides or slopes that can be differently pitched.
- Gambrel roof is a kind of the gable roof, having the slope divided into two sections: a steep-slope lower one and a low-slope upper one. This style allows the maximum use of the garret floor.
- Hip roof consists of four slopes: two trapezoid ones and two triangular ones.
- Pyramid hip roof consists of four converging identical triangular slopes.
- Intersecting/overlaid hip roof is a complex structure concluding several slopes, gables and pitches.
- Curved roof has a circular arc as the cross section. This style is more generally used for low-rise household buildings of simple rectangular shape.
Other roof styles are: domed-vault roof, dome roof, conical roof, cross gable roof, bell roof, combined designs. Modern roofing materials and techniques leave nearly no limit to architect’s design.