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What Is a Gable Roof? Everything You Should Know About It!

Black solar panels on gable roof. Beautiful, large modern house and solar energy. Rays of sun. Generative AI

Are you installing a new roof for your house and keep hearing the word “gable”? Going deep into the construction world, you’ll hear a lot of terms you’re unfamiliar with, but luckily, we’re here to help!

Gable roofs are one of the most popular roof styles in cold regions, and they come packing a lot of pros. Still, what is a gable roof? And why is it a popular choice? Let’s find out!

If you want to install a new gable roof, request a price quote now!

What Is a Gable Roof?

Gable roofs are residential roofs with two sloped parts that go down the sides of the house and meet at the top to form a ridge. They’re common in cold regions with harsh weather conditions because their designs prevent the accumulation of water and snow atop the roof as they glide right off with gravity.

The Variations of Gable Roof Designs

There are many gable roof styles on the market, with each one serving a specific purpose. Here’s a quick rundown of the most common ones.

Cross Gable

A cross-gable roof has a unique design where two gable roof sections intersect each other in the middle, and their ridges meet perpendicularly at a high point. From above, the roof looks like the letter “T.” Cross-gable roofs are usually large houses that have extra units, like a garage or a smaller house.

Dutch Gable

Gable with horizontal vinyl lap siding, double hung window with white frame, double vinyl shutters yellow shingle facade on a pitched roof attic at an American single family home neighborhood USA

A Dutch gable roof combines the designs of a standard gable roof and a hip roof to bring you the best of both worlds. It consists of a small gable roof sitting atop a hip roof, which has four sloped parts going down the house instead of only two. It’s a unique roof style that looks aesthetic, features excellent drainage, and provides a wider attic space.

Box Gable

A box gable roof is close to the standard gable design with only one difference, a complete triangle instead of one with two sides. Looking at it, you’ll notice that the two sides of the roof extend slightly beyond the ends of the house to form two small triangles. Also, you’ll notice that the triangle shape has a box from below to highlight the geometrical design.

Front Gable

Front gable roofs are smaller versions of the standard gable design that you can see over the front door. It’s a traditional roof style in Colonial architecture and is most commonly found in old houses.

Gable Roof Advantages

Gable with horizontal vinyl lap siding, double hung window with white frame, double vinyl shutters yellow shingle facade on a pitched roof attic at an American single family home neighborhood USA

There’s a reason gable roofs are among the most common roofing styles in a lot of countries. Here’s a list of all the advantages you’ll enjoy if you install one:

  • No Accumulation of Rain and Snow: Like any pitched roof, the sloppiness of gable roofs lets rain and snow slide off right away, preventing extra pressure and leakages.

  • Extra Surface Area: With a gable roof design, you get more interior space in the attic and an extra surface area outside where you can install solar panels.

  • Affordability: Gable roofs are made from affordable materials and are easy to construct, which means fewer labor wages and no dent in your bank account.

  • Excellent Ventilation: Gable vents allow moisture out of your attic and fresh air in, which improves the air quality inside.

  • Aesthetics: Gable roofs have aesthetically appealing designs that complement various exterior architectural styles.

Gable Roof Disadvantages

Owning a gable roof isn’t all pink. It comes with a couple of cons that you should consider, so here’s a list of them:

  • Less Headspace: The triangular design of gabled roofs gives you less headspace inside the house. While this is fine in case the roof is above an attic, it won’t be as pleasant if it sits on top of a more frequented room.

  • Not Ideal for All Weather Conditions: Gable roofs aren’t suitable for hurricane-susceptible areas because they tend to peel and suffer significant storm damage.

Gable Roofs vs. Hip Roofs: What’s the Difference?

Gable Roofs vs. Hip Roofs

Many people confuse gable roofs and hip roofs together, but they couldn’t be more different. A gable roof has two sloped panels going down the house, but a hip roof has four, looking more like a pyramid roof.

While hip roofs cost significantly more than their counterparts, they’re better for many houses because they’re sturdier and more resistant to high winds. Their most famous variations are the mansard roof, tented roof, and crossed hip roof.

What Materials Are Used to Construct Gable Roofs?

Gable roofs can be built using different roofing materials, including metal, asphalt, cedar shake, and terracotta.

  • Metal: Metal gable roofs tend to last a lifetime because they’re extremely sturdy and resistant to weather conditions. However, they’re pricier than the other materials.

  • Asphalt: Asphalt shingles reduce the risk of leaks and are decently resistant to damage and harsh conditions. Luckily, they’re on the affordable side of the market.

  • Cedar Shake: Cedar Shake is a type of wood that delivers attractive aesthetics like no other roofing material. It’s resistant to leaks but can suffer water damage if not maintained regularly.

  • Terracotta: Terracotta tiles can last up to 100 years because of their extreme durability and resistance to conditions. However, their heaviness makes them a less favorable option because they’re challenging to install.

To Wrap Up

A gable roof consists of two sloped panels that go down either side of the house. They meet at a high point and form a ridge, giving them a distinct triangular shape. It’s an ideal option if you don’t want to break the bank, as it’s affordable and easy to install. However, if you live in a hurricane-y area, think twice before installing it because it’s prone to peeling and collapsing.

If you want to install a new roof or fix a damaged one, get in contact with us today!

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