Reverse Gable roof – Pros and Cons

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Reverse gable roof is a unique option for unconventional roof shapes and designs. Whenever, you talk about garage roofs or a roof for home addition; gable roof can be a perfect selection.  The word “gable” is specifically used by roofers to talk about the ridge line. It’s the top most line in the roof geometry where two triangular or sloping surfaces meet.

In a typical gable roof, the orientation of the roof is such that the roof ridge line or gable of the roof aligns the house and so sloping sides of the roof doesn’t face the street. In other words, the gable of the roof touches or is perpendicular to the entrance and back face of the house.  

In reverse gable roof, the ridge line or gable of the roof is parallel to the street and the gables are at the sides. So, a reverse gable roof has a reverse orientation such the gable faces the sides.

Some other variations of gable roof include Dutch gable or front gable.  

So, now that you have got the concept of the reverse gable roof; are you able to relate some of the pros and cons for such an orientation?

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What is a reverse gable roof?

One of the most common types of roof for a house in US, Canada, and Australia is a gable roof. In fact, it’s so common that if you ask anybody to draw a picture of a house, he’ll end up with a gable roof.

Gable roof is a style of roof in which the two sloping sides of the roof meet at the center ridge at the top. In a typical arrangement, it forms like a shape “A” with flat horizontal front side on the front and the back.

For such a house, the main design element for cub appeal is the siding or house’s cladding. Whereas in reverse gable roof, the roof itself takes a dominant position in defining the curb appeal of the house. So, in that case homeowners prefer to use dormers or skylights to enhance the overall look of the front face of the house.

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Structure of a reverse gable roof

As you’ve already read in the definition that the main part of the reverse gable roof include two sloping sides or pitches. These sides met at the top ridge line that forms the gable. In a typical structure, the sloping surfaces are supported with the help of series of rafters and ridge board that run parallel to the gable.

To have a projected portion of roof beyond the walls, the eaves of the roof are supported by series of eave trusses or rafters. The purpose of eaves finished with overhang is to protect the walls and windows from rainwater.

The roof deck is installed above the rafter and are secured in place with nails or screws. Typical material used for decking include plywood or oriented strand board (OSB). After that, shingles or tiles are installed over the roof to protect it from elements.

Another important part of gable roof is the gutter system. It includes channel of water that collects and take water away from the foundation and walls. This system is critical to prevent water damage and leaks.

Pros of reverse gable roofs

Just like a typical gable roof, a reverse orientation still inherent the benefits.

  • With steep slope and roof pitch; it can easily shed rain and snow.
  • Unlike hip roof that has slopes on all 4 sides, both gable and reverse gable roofs have slopes only on two sides. This arrangement makes it easy to fabricate and design.
  • Because of easy fabrication and built project, it is affordable and budget-friendly.
  • It doesn’t involve complex framing or additional roofing material.
  • It offers maximum utilization of space because of slopes only on two sides. It gives you maximum width on the other two sides so you’ve got plenty of space that you can utilize in your floor plan.
  • If you’re living in a humid environment or areas with high precipitation; gable or reverse gable are best. They vent the house pretty easily.

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Cons of reverse gable roofs

Because of slopes in all four sides, hip roofs can withstand high winds and hurricanes. It’s a pretty important feature for homeowners living in areas vulnerable to such wind uplift forces.

Reverse gable roofs on the other hand, are almost 50% more vulnerable to wind pressure damages. Because of vertical two sides, the wind can exert enormous pressure on the structure.

Some insurance companies also offer premium-reductions in case of hip-roof.

In case of heavy rainfall or failure of the gutter system, the runoff from the sloping faces can pour down on the front of the house or on the driveway. This can result in messy condition along your driveway. So, being a roofer we always recommend homeowners to undergo periodic gutter maintenance to avoid such calamities.

Key takeaways

Reverse gable roof is a unique option for unconventional roof shapes and designs. It is a variation of a typical gable roof where the orientation of the roof is such that the gable or ridge line is parallel to the street, with the gables at the sides.

Pros of a reverse gable roof include easy shedding of rain and snow, easy fabrication and design, affordability, and maximum utilization of space.

Cons include increased vulnerability to wind pressure damage and potential for messy conditions caused by runoff during heavy rainfall. Insurance companies may also offer premium reductions for homes with hip roofs. Homeowners should consider these factors when deciding on a roofing option and should also undergo periodic gutter maintenance to prevent potential issues.

David Noah

Howdy, I’m Noah Although I don't like all this internet thing but I love sharing my stories on the roof here. With my years of experience in number of roofing contractors across various boroughs of Florida, I'm here to answer all your roofing questions. I'm really honored to have you on my website browsing through our articles and hope you'll enjoy your visit and find my content helpful in every situation. You can contact me right away to discuss any of your roofing problem.

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