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Most rooms in the average house are rectangular with four walls, a flat floor, and flat ceiling. The same cannot be said about the average roof. The surface is slanted, often with gable pop-outs, perhaps featuring an overhang and gutters. Understanding plans when it comes to roofing takes a little bit of homework.

If you have ever tried to read the blueprints of a roof plan, you may have been overwhelmed trying to decipher the mess of thin lines and inconvenient angles. However, the diagrams become less complicated when you know more about them. Explore these tips on interpreting roof plans:

Demystifying Roof Plans

RoofGenius.com offers some very useful tips for making sense of roof plans. These suggestions are by no means exhaustive, but they should help to dispel some of the mystery behind these architectural hieroglyphics.

Tip 1: Check the Scale of Your Roof

The most important step is checking the scale of your roof plans. If the schematics say 1/8-inch scale, this means that every inch is equal to eight feet. Similar ratios exist for metric users.

Tip 2: Determine the Pitch of Your Roof

To determine the exact slant of your roof, you may have to go on top of your home and use a level and ruler to measure how many inches the roof rises for every inch that the roof juts out. A pitch of 6/12, for example, means that the roof rises 6 inches for every foot that it runs.

Tip 3: Square Off the Roof

If your roof has many crevices, coves, and wings, simply square off everything you can by dividing the roof into rectangular sections. A roof in the shape of a cross, for example, is actually just one long rectangle with two smaller rectangles one either side. This makes measuring much simpler.

Once you get the hang of it, reading roof plans is not so difficult. Once you get the hang of it you’ll be able to easily understand the structure of many types of roofs.

How to Easily and Quickly Decipher Residential Roof Plans

How to Easily and Quickly Decipher Residential Roof Plans