Anatomy of a Pitched Roof

 In Roofing

When repairing or replacing your roof you need to consider each piece of the anatomy of a pitched roof.

Often you know exactly what you need done to your home but you don’t have the right vocabulary to explain it to someone else. Here is a brief overview of the anatomy of a pitched roof to help you get the help you need.

To start, a pitched roof is also referred to as:

  • angled
  • gable
  • gambrel
  • hipped
  • lean-to

The picture is labeled with common parts of a pitched roof that are discussed in roof repair and roof replacement.

1. SHINGLES The topcoat of a roof. Asphalt shingles (three-tab or architectural style) are the most common roof shingles, followed by wood metal and tile. Over time shingles become damaged and need to be replaced. Sometime you may decide on an overlay and other times a complete replacement is needed.

2. VENT PIPE A plastic or cast-iron pipe that’s connected to the home’s plumbing system. It pokes through the roof and admits fresh air into the plumbing system, which helps sinks, tubs and toilets to drain quickly and efficiently. Sometime in the winter you can see steam coming from these vent pipes.

3. CHIMNEY A noncombustible structure, usually made of brick or stone, that rises above the roof line to exhaust smoke and fumes. Having your chimney cleaned regularly helps prevent accumulated debris inside the stack from catching on fire. Regular cleaning also help maintain easy ventilation of your fireplace.

4. CHIMNEY CAP A metal or stone top placed above the chimney flue to keep out rain and snow.

5. FLUE The interior of every chimney is lined with a flue, which safely carries smoke and fumes from fireplaces, furnaces and other fuel-burning appliances. The flue is created using square or rectangular sections of clay pipe, called flue tiles. When your fireplace is not in use it is a good idea to close the flue to keep out the cold.

6. RIDGE The peak at the highest point of a sloped roof. Often has a vent running along its length to allow hot air out of the attic.

7. HIP ROOF A distinctive roof design that has four roof planes and no A-framed gableend walls (as shown). Two planes, typically at the ends of the house, slant down from the ridge to the tops of the end walls.

8. HIP RIDGE The angled peak between two adjoining sections of a hip roof.

9. GUTTERS AND DOWNSPOUTS Channels attached to the fascia to carry away rain. Bishop specializes in seamless gutters

10. FASCIA A horizontal board fastened to the lower ends of roof rafters. Rain gutters are usually attached to them.

11. DRIP EDGE Metal flashing that’s placed along the edges of the roof to divert rain away from the house and into the gutter.

12. RAKE A piece of exterior trim that runs at an angle from the peak of a gable-end wall down to the eaves. (It’s often made from a 154 or 156, and is positioned just below the roof shingles.)

13. GABLE The A-framed sidewall of a home that forms the peaked roof.

14. GABLE-END VENT Located high on a gable-end wall, this vent admits fresh air into the attic to help keep the attic cool.

15. SOFFIT The underside of the eaves that projects over the exterior wall. Often fitted with vents to admit fresh air into the attic.

16. EAVES The lower edge of the roof that extends out beyond the exterior walls.

Remember that with every repair in your home, you have options. With every option there are pros and cons and costs. Make sure you ask your contractor for all the options before making a decision about how you’d like to move forward.

In Albuquerque, Contact Bishop Remodeling for a Consultation about your roof.

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