The roof is one of the main components of your shed. Its main elements include the trusses and rafters which support the decking, insulation and roof covering. The decking or sheathing is the material (usually plywood) between the trusses and the insulation. Insulation may be necessary if you plan to use your shed for most of the year. Finally, felt material or shingles can be used as covering for your roof. When building your shed roof consider its cost (economic life), attractiveness and weatherproofing benefits.
Weigh the different advantages and disadvantages for each style before building a shed roof. Every style differs on its pitch and the different angles formed by its sloping planes. Follow the instructions on your shed plans to build the type of roof that goes well with your shed.
The most popular shed roofs are: saltbox, gambrel, gable, hip and lean-to roofs.
The salt box roof originated from colonial architecture and is well known for its symmetrical roof. It is one of the simplest designs to build and has high resistance to winds. In addition, it covers a small area and provides great storage space.
A gambrel roof is best known as a barn roof because it is mostly seen on sheds used for animal storage. The peak line has two slopes which create a sharp angle and a high ceiling that can be used as attic space. These roofs have great storage capacity and can also sustain strong winds. However, they are more costly to build.
Gable roofs have a triangular shape and are very common in the US and Europe. They are inexpensive to build and easy to install. Gable roofs work very well in most climates, except high wind areas. They are very practical because they can add extra headroom to your shed.
Hip roofs have four faces that slope downward towards the eaves. They are not as easy to build because they require more detailed trusses and can be more expensive due to a larger area. Also, there is limited room for storage in the roof. This type of roof is very popular because of its resistance to high winds.
The most simple roof type to build is the lean-to style. This roof is very useful when you have limited space in which to build. It will also save you money and time since you will be using fewer building materials. The lean to roof is single sloped and does not have any corners. It has a moderate angle that lets water and snow fall from the roof. Typical sheds built using this roof include those for storing tools and firewood.
Selecting the right roof style will have a huge impact on the lifetime of your shed. Make sure you base your decision on how the shed will be used, your climate conditions and the area in which the structure will be built. If you build the roof yourself you will save a great deal of money and have a good fun time as well.