Steep vs Low Sloped Roofs: Which Is Better

Although there are plenty of roof structures on the market, we mainly separate them into two categories. Low and steep sloped roofs. You might have noticed that flat roofs are left out. Well, that’s not exactly the case. You see, flat roofs are not exactly flat. There’s a slight slope which makes possible for rainwater to shed.


What defines steep and low sloped roofs?

Naturally, the main difference between low and steep roofs is their inclination. You might have overheard a roofing contractor talking about 3/12 or 6/12 roofs. These numbers indicate the slope of the roof. The first number shows how many inches the roof rises upwards while the second indicates how many inches it runs horizontally. And since such measurements are done based on foot, the second number is 12. As you’d expect the lower the first number, the lower the roof is too.

Which are pros & cons of steep roofs?

It’s no wonder that steep roofing designs decorate most homes. One of the greatest advantage of high pitched roofs is their imposing looks. This is enhanced by the ability to play with the designs. If the house is big, the roof can be multi-leveled and thus the design is far from boring. The aesthetics are improved due to the variety of materials and colors and naturally, such advantages increase home value too.

In terms of functionality, high pitched roofs enable rainwater and snow to fall off easier diminishing the possibility of water damage. The big space formed indoors allows for more storage space, the creation of an attic, and thus more livable room while it forms the basis for better ventilation. Practically maintenance-free, steep roofs are impressive and convenient.

However, any roof repair and maintenance service is hard to do due to the slope while the cost is often higher since special equipment is needed to walk and work on such roofs. Another disadvantage is that steep roofs require more materials and underlayment and the cost of the installation is rather high.

Which are the pros & cons of low roofs?

Low roofs are simple and since their surface is small, the cost for their installation is lower than their steep counterparts. They are considered walkable roofs and this is their advantage since a person can walk on them without special equipment or fear for their lives. Although they have been used in commercial properties until now, they recently feature in homes inclined to a minimalistic architectural style. Due to the small space between the roof and ceiling, they improve indoor energy efficiency and help you save money.

Although they need limited roofing material, there’s a need for flashing, drains, and coping. Their low slope keep debris, snow, and rainwater from flowing and so they need maintenance and inspection regularly.

Which roof structure is better for you?

When it comes to choosing the roof structure for your home, pay attention to the weather and elements in your location. Steep roofs are usually recommended in areas prone to rain and snowfall but not in areas prone to high winds. When it comes to low roofs, they are ideal for windy regions but not for areas with heavy rains and snow. And then it’s about the cost and aesthetics. Nothing compares with the dramatic looks of steep sloped roofs, but only if you can afford it.