Planning to Convert a Flat Roof to a Gable Roof

A gable roof is the triangulated portion of a roof. Gables may also appear as hipped edges on a sloping roof. Because of their commonality, gable roofs are often considered cheap inclusions in the construction process. Gable roof designs depend on the structural makeup of the building in question. Gable roofs are aesthetic additions and not a compulsory feature of every roof. Flat roofs on the other hand are simply that - flat. Their uninteresting appearance can be spruced up by including a gable roof. Planning this addition must be done with care, as this will affect the overall makeup of your building.

Identify Length of Gable

First, determine the pitch length of the gable that you wish to construct. This will calculated according to the height of your building. This is important because you need to know how your gable roof will affect the structural strength of your building. Depending on the size of the building, you will also need to factor in a central spine load-bearing wall to balance the building. If you do not know how to go about these calculations, employ the service of a contractor to help you.  

Construction Costs

Now consider the cost of your construction. Gable roofs, depending on the size of the building, come with additional materials that can be expensive and in turn are required to meet several standards. Wall plates (timber beams) are compulsory additions as are floor and ceiling joists which in most cases are made out of timber. Rafters too must be calculated depending on the type of gable you want over your flat roof for instance, valley jack rafters and common rafters. In addition, the type of tiles used to complete your gable roof should be considered, as this will affect your budget. Hoisting all these materials may also require you to incorporate a crane or other mechanical lifting facilities, all of which must be factored in.

Space Utilization

Consider what you plan to do with the space created by the gable roof. The type of deck you will have to install over the flat roof must be included in the calculation. Most people turn this space into rooms or attics while others use this space for storage like water tanks and what not. It is therefore extra work to convert this created space into a habitable area conducive to your needs for it.

Assess Construction Material

Assess the construction material before you begin. Poorly placed gables or miscalculated placements will bring about disaster. Also, try not to play mix and match by replacing the building’s original material with another for your gabled roof. If your building is made from wood, then the pitch created by your gable roof should also follow suit.

Choose Gable Type

Now determine the type of gable you want. As mentioned above, gables are available in wide variety. Depending on the size of your flat roof, do you want a hip gable roof or a winged gable roof? Note that your choice will depend on the structural strength of your building.