A hip (or hipped) roof is one of the most common roof types in North America. It consists of four different roof fields, all sloping down to the walls. In its most simplistic design the walls are all of equal height, making construction prior to the roof installation simpler.
Because there are four roof fields, there is no gable formed, leading a hip roof to provide more protection against wind. A hip roof is also ideal in windy conditions because it is slightly sloped, and with no steep or vertical roof it is more aerodynamic, making it less susceptible to wind damage.
A hip roof is more expensive than a gable roof, as it contains more roofing surface area than that of a gable roof. Plus with its added hips and valleys the hip roof has more areas where roofing leakage is more likely to occur, so added materials and construction precautions are involved in these areas. There is less attic space with a hip roof, making it less accessible when certain roof maintenance and repairs are needed. A hip roof will also have less ventilation when compared to other roof types.
Homeowners might like the added shade a hip roof provides. With eaves hanging over the walls on each side of the house, there is added protection from the sun. This can help keep cooling costs down during hot summer days.
There are also several variations to a hip roof which include:
- Pyramid Hip Roof: All four walls are of equal height and length. The roof fields are triangular which make them meet at a single point. No ridge is formed at the top of the roof.
- Cross Hip Roof: The cross hip roof essentially has two intersecting hip sections, that run perpendicular to each other. These intersections can take place at the end forming an L-shape, or can be in the middle forming more of a T-shape.
- Half Hip Roof: A hip roof that has had two sides shortened to create eaves. Forms a gable, however the shortened roof field sides take up the top part of the gable where the triangular section would be.
Hip Roof Type Illustrations