The do it yourself resource for homeowners from home improvement professionals.

How to Build a Hip Roof

Hip roofs offer excellent stability and shed water easily. These advantages make them well suited to the windy and wet climate in the Delaware Valley. When selecting lumber while learning how to build a hip roof keep in mind the span of the roof determines the required lumber size. You should contact your township code’s department before building a home addition.

How to Build a Hip Roof Directions

  1. Divide the width of building by 2 to find length for common rafters.
  2. Subtract width of ridge board from that figure.
  3. Determine the pitch of the roof.
  4. Enter these measurements into a roofing calculator to find length for each rafter.
  5. Rafters placed on the short ends of the roof will have the ridge board length subtracted instead of width.
  6. With a pencil and carpenter’s framing square, mark the lines for the ridge cut on each board.
  7. Mark both lines for the birdsmouth cut on the other end of each rafter.
    1. The seat cut is horizontal and fits on top of the wall.
    2. The shoulder cut will be parallel with the wall and extend beyond the wall to create the roof overhang.
  8. Make all cuts with a circular saw.
  9. Cut enough rafters so that they can be installed every 20 inches.
  10. Nail 4 to 6 centering rafters on the longest sides of the building perpendicular to the ridge board.
  11. Nail the ridge board between the centering rafters.
  12. Nail more common rafters in place along the longest walls.
  13. Nail 4 hip rafters to the ends of the ridge board on each side of the roof and at the corners of the building.
  14. Add the remaining common rafters.
  15. Nail jack rafters to the hip rafters and the walls on the short sides of the roof.
  16. Measure the surface area on all four sides of the roof to determine how much plywood sheathing is needed.
  17. Start at a corner when applying plywood sheathing.
  18. Tack the first sheet in place.
  19. Position the second sheet next to it and line up the edges with each other and the fascia.
  20. Once you have confirmed straight positioning, nail sheets in place.
  21. Repeat process until all sheathing has been attached.
  22. Apply roofing paper, shingles, and drip edges to complete your new hip roof.

Tools & Materials

  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Carpenter’s framing square
  • Circular saw
  • Nail gun

Professional Delaware Valley Roofers

Although DIY carpenters can learn how to build a hip roof from raw lumber, you may want to consider the advantages of hiring professionals for the roofing job. PJ Fitzpatrick has repaired and replaced thousands of roofs since 1980. We can complete your roofing job quickly and affordably. Ask us for an estimate today.

Need help with this project?

We have trained professionals that can help. Contact us today. 1-877-246-4354

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