Pros And Cons Of Different Styles Of Gable Roofs

A gable roof has two steep sloping sides that meet at a peak. The classic design is seen on houses with a variety of architectural styles including Cape Cod and Colonial-inspired. If you are building your dream home and need to decide on a roof shape, a gable roof can prove a versatile workhorse.

But any roof style has its own pros and cons. The standard gable and a couple of related styles each has its own considerations to make while discussing the project with your roofers.

Standard Gable

A standard gable has only the two sloping sides and is typically found on smaller or narrower homes. The layout is simple for any type of roofing material, which can save on costs, and is designed to easily shed off water or snow.

The one potential problem with a standard or other type of gable is that high winds can go straight up the sloping sides and tear off roofing materials. You might not experience this problem if your home has natural windbreaks such as high trees or close, tall neighbors. If your home is in an open area, however, you should avoid lighter roofing materials like asphalt, which have a greater risk of coming off in the wind.

Crossed Gable

A crossed gable design comes into play when two different wings of the house each have their own gable roof that then meet in the middle. The pros are largely the same as with the standard gable, though price might become more of an issue due to the added surface area.

Wind isn't the only potential issue for crossed gable roofs. The areas where the roofs meet at sharp angles can be vulnerable to water leaks. Exceptional waterproofing can be provided with metal roofing, or standing seam roofing, which can snap together tightly even around sharp corners.

Dutch Gable

A Dutch gable roof essentially has two roofs sitting on top of each other. The top roof is a standard gable while the bottom section is a hip roof, which has sloping segments on all four sides of the home. The hip segments slope upwards to connect with the bottom of the gable.

The design of a Dutch gable adds more visual interest to a home than a standard gable and can add additional standing space to an upper level of the home. The design, like a crossed gable, also adds to the amount of surface area that needs to be covered. And more of the Dutch gable is visible from the ground due to the gently sloping hip section. So you might need to splurge on an attractive roofing material such as slate or wood to provide your home with some good curb appeal.