Pitched Roof Construction

Pitched roof construction. A pitched rooftop is very distinct to other roofs with less obvious angled options than may be found in some houses. A pitched roof is very angular in natural. When it comes to pitched rooftop construction, there are a few different options: hipped, gabled, shed, and mansard.


In order to properly build this type of rooftop, you will need to begin with a detailed pitched roof construction diagram.

This will give the exact pitched roof construction details to properly order supplies and correctly construct the roof. Among items found on this diagram include everything from ridge flashing location and how the roof will be framed.

These instructions should be followed exactly in order to get the best results.

This does not just apply to a house’s roof construction, but these should also be used for a pitched garage rooftop construction.

Another aspect of construction to consider is a warm pitched roof construction. This is where you consider the ventilation and sealing of the roof. There are many benefits to this type of construction, including making a home more energy efficient and minimizing the thermal bridge at the eaves.


If you want to know how to construct a pitched roof, there are several steps that need to occur. After reading through the diagrams, you will want to first consider if you want to add a pitched roof dormer construction.

A pitched roof dormer is generally a decorative piece that is added onto the roof to add a visually pleasing aspect to your roof. This can also be a functional piece to your home where you can walk into and even install a bench to sit on.

This is all based on what is the personal preference that one is looking for in their home. Another consideration is the shape of the house and the intention for using this type of roof.

Some roofing constructions offer additional living space, offering an often less expensive option than some other types of construction builds.

As previously discussed, a good option is the warm pitched rooftop. The warm pitched rooftop details are all centered on insulation and ventilation.

Traditional roofing options run the risk of not being very energy efficient, while also adding a condensation risk  that is absolutely not desired by homeowners, as this brings their own set of issues.

In this type of construction, the thermal insulation will be placed in the rafter line. There are some variables in the exact location of the insulation.

It can be placed entirely above or partially between and above the rafter line. It can also be positioned between the rafters or partially between and below the rafter.


Timber pitched rooftop construction details focus on the timber construction that is commonly used in most roofing constructions. Timber is a heavy material that adds strength to your roof, but comes at quite the cost.

When constructing a pitched rooftop with timber, this can be an incredibly labor intensive build.

It is important when doing this to have a properly detailed plan given to the carpenter because this type of construction is only as good as the carpenter.

They will follow the calculations on the diagrams to make the right cuts and angles that are required for whichever type of pitched roof that is being built.

There is a lot of care taken by the professionals with this type of roof construction because measurements must be perfect. Everything is done onsite as the carpenter also is part of the building crew and will be able to make adjustments as needed based on  the diagram.


One type of pitched rooftops is the mansard roof. This type of roof requires sloped roof construction as mansard rooftops have two slopes that are found on each of its sides as well as a lower slope.

These types of roofs are very distinct from other pitched rooftops. These types of roofs can offer a lot of attic space and are a simple way to add more stories to a building.

The upper level of this type of rooftop may not often be seen from afar, but upon closer look they can be more obvious.

These are also very decorative options that feature dormer window surrounds that are often elaborate in nature. These are very common in Europe, especially in France where they were created as part of the construction of the Louvre.

Another type of pitched rooftop is the mono-pitched roof. This type of rooftop construction is also referred to as a single pitch roof construction. This is because these rooftops are a single sloping roof that is often not attached to other roof surfaces. These are also sometimes referred to as a pent roof or a lean-to.

This can also be part of an addition to an existing roof where the main roof has a flat ceiling, but a mono-pitched part will slope to maximize the ceiling height.

A lean-to pitched roof construction can be a very useful addition to any home because it can offer a great storage space similar to that of a shed. Here, items like firewood or lawn equipment can be stored safely.

In order to plan this properly, a plan needs to be created based on the area and function of the space. If this space will be used for items like a lawnmower, it will need to be a larger space.

If there is a lot of rain or snow, the slope will need to be steeper than in other locations to prevent the heavy moisture from pooling up and causing damage. The ground will need to be level to get a sturdy construction. These are all factors to consider when adding a lean-to rooftop area.

pitched roof types

Other pitched roof types are gabled, shed, and hipped. A gabled roof is where there is an extension of the roof that is a triangular shape off of the end wall. The shape looks similar to that of an upside down “V” shape.

The gable comes in a variety of different types which can depend on several factors, including structural system used as its base, materials, climate, and for aesthetic purposes.

The ends of the gables are wall bearing structures that add to the structural integrity. This may not be a good roofing choice in areas prone to hurricane or tornado prone locations because they can be easily torn off during very strong winds.

A hipped roof is a roof that has its sides sloping downwards towards walls with a usually gentle slope. It is a roof slope that has no gable or any vertical sides to the roof.

There are different shapes to this roof type. There is a square roof, which takes on the shape of a pyramid. There are also hip roofs that have two triangular sides and two sides shaped like a trapezoid.

These are common roofing types that are found on bungalow and cottage homes. The construction of this type of roof is much more complicated than the simpler gable roof type.

Although the actual roof is more complicated to construct, the walls that support it are easier to build since they are all level.

This roof also comes with downsides. This type of roof can be more difficult to maintain because there is limited access in the attic. They are also more difficult to ventilate.

A final downside to this roof type is that there is no way to put in a window like you can with a gable roof, meaning that there will be no natural light located in the attic.

These are great roofing options for areas of extreme weather like tornadoes and hurricanes because they have fewer sharp corners that can act like wings and push up with the air.

This is also because a hipped roof is a more structurally sound roof type due to its more complex construction. The shed roof is a simpler roof style where there is only one slope, which is common for additions like the lean-to roof type.


There are a couple of different methods for constructing pitched style roofs. One pitched roof construction method is a “cut roof” method.

This is more of a traditional manner in regards to cutting the timber while onsite and building up the roof by the use of rafters, ridge boards, joists and purlins among others. This can be determined by the size of the timbers or the size of the roof.

In this method, there are joists and rafters. Joists are important because they prevent the outward spread of the rafters and also give important support to the ceiling below the area. Rafters are another important piece of this type of roof construction.

These are nailed to a wall plate at the top of each supporting wall. Their length is determined by the length of the wall plate to the ridge.

The rafters have triangular sections that are cut out of them in order to fit nicely on the wall plate. The top of the rafter will then be cut at an angle and nailed to the ridge board.

Another section of this type of roof construction is purlins, as well as the associated struts. These are used in order to offer extra support for the rafters, adding strength to the roof.

The purlins are found at right angles in respect to the rafters, and the associated struts are found every fourth rafter which attaches the joists to above a supporting wall.

Then, there are hangers that are found at right angles to the joists, which help keep the ceiling held up. Collars are located further down the rafters and offer extra binding between rafters to help keep the roof strong.

Another pitched roof construction manner is the “truss roof” method. Unlike the “cut roof” method, this method does not have a carpenter onsite creating pieces to be placed together on a roof. This type of construction involves the use of factory made frames called “tresses.” Each of these trusses includes combining the joist, rafter and the struts.

The truss is a more modern method of construction. These are each made with the exact position of the roof structure and are created by using butt jointed timber lengths that are nailed together using plate fastenings.

These are usually bolted together, or they also are mortised and tenoned, and then pegged afterwards.

They are designed to create part of the entire roof structure which is why they should not be altered in any way unless consulting an engineer to ensure that the structure is not compromised by these changes. This applied to any type of construction.

The complexity of pitched rooftop construction relies on a variety of factors. First of all, there are many details to pitched roof types that can make construction more complex. There are ridges, eaves, hips, abutments, and the centerline of the ridge.

Some roofs have some of these aspects, while other roofs may have all of these features. This all depends on the aesthetic design for the roof and the types of structures that are required to be a structurally sound roof.

Ridges, hips and valleys are the corner or joint areas that are located where the roof will change direction.

The edges of the roof are comprised by the verges, abutments, and eaves. “Eaves” refers to the horizontal joints that are located between a roof and a wall. This is different from a “verge,” which is the angled joint found between a roof and a gable wall.

There are also different types of trussed roof frame including scissor frames, room-in-attic, clerestory, and the triple howe. The scissor frames and gives a vaulted or cathedral ceiling effect. The room-in-attic offers living space in the attic.

The clerestory allows for a high wall with a band of narrow windows along the top. The triple howe gives  the ability to have wide spans of 54 to 80 feet. These types of trussed roof frames can depend on the type of roof and the needs of the roof if  it is part of an addition.

Founder & Editor

Hi, I’m Jim. I was a roofing constructor for 20 years, before deciding to start myrooff.com and gather the best content about roofing. I love woodworking and construction and it was only natural for me to start this passion project of mine. Thank you for visitng.