The pitch of a roof refers to how steep it is. It is figured by how many inches the rises for every 12 inches in depth. For example, if a roof rises 6 inches for every 12 inches inward toward the peak, it is known as 6:12 pitch.
It is pretty dangerous to try and measure the pitch of your roof. There are a number of online roof calculators that keep you safely on the ground, but you can also measure it from inside of your attic.
The following article provides instruction on this method:
Determining Roof Pitch | This Old House
First, measure 12 inches from one end of the level and make a mark. Then, in the attic, place the end of the level against the bottom of a roof rafter and hold it perfectly level. Now measure vertically from the 12-inch mark on the level straight up to the underside of the rafter, as illustrated. That measurement is the number of inches the roof rises in 12 inches.
See the original post here: Determining Roof Pitch | This Old House
If you have ever been up on a roof, it is an uncomfortable place to hang out. (That is a huge understatement if you are afraid of heights.) For roofing contractors, or for brave individuals that want to save some money, there are a number of safety issues that are crucial to accomplishing the job safely.
Some of the necessary equipment for roofing, and especially on a steep roof, is:
- Roof jacks
- Roof harness
- Roof ladder
If you don’t have access to this type of equipment, there are options that can keep you safe. The person in the following video built an apparatus that makes roofing a little less daunting:
How steep a roof is doesn’t just decide the type of equipment needed, it also determines the type of roofing materials that can be used. Flat roofs can’t be covered with asphalt shingles, and steep pitched roofs don’t use rubber or asphalt roll roofing.
The following post discusses why the pitch of a roof establishes the type of roof materials that are feasible for the job:
Roof Pitch Determines Choice of Roofing Materials
When choosing roofing materials, it may seem that you have an infinite choice of any material on the market: asphalt, composite, metal,
wood shake, rubber, MSR rooled roofing. The world of roofing materials is your oyster, right?
Not so. Many factors determine which roofing materials you can use. One make-or-break factor is roof pitch.
For example, you may think you want classic composite shingles on your roof, but if your pitch is below a certain ratio, you may be forced to install a different type of roofing–perhaps torch-down or standing seam metal roofing.
Read more here: Roof Pitch Determines Choice of Roofing Materials
Another impact of roof pitch is the cost. Any pitch greater than 6:12 requires more staging, safety and labor to complete the roof properly. A steeper roof line changes the fire rating and therefore a more expensive underlayment system.