Types of Shed Roofs

Selection of a roof style for a new garden shed depends on the purpose and location of the shed as well as the style of the house and yard that it will serve. Gable, gambrel, hip, lean-to and saltbox roofs are common styles.


Steep gables increase head room.
Some gable roofs have a shallow angle.

Gable roofs have two sloped sides of equal size that rise to a peak and form a triangular shape. They sluff snow and drain rainwater efficiently, especially if the angle of the roof isn't shallow.


Barns often have gambrel roofs.

Gambrel-style roofs provide more head room and loft storage than other roof styles, according to the Home Tips website. They are basically gables with three ridges --- one at the peak and one on each side of the roof --- forming a symmetrical barn-type look.


A hip roof tops this old barn shed.

Hip style roofs are another variation on the gable, but overhang all four sides of a shed because they have four angled sides --- two large and two small --- that meet at the peak of the two large sides.


Lean-to sheds can be open air or enclosed.

One of the simplest shed roof designs is the lean-to, which can be visualized as a single, sloping plane or one side of a gable. Lean-to sheds usually are placed next to buildings, fences or garden walls with the roof sloping away from the structure it abuts.


Saltbox roofs have an offset ridge.

A shed with a saltbox roof is shallow from front to back. It looks like a gable that is incomplete on one side due to its offset ridge. Headroom is greatest at the front of the shed.

About the Author

Alicia Rudnicki's Library Mix website blends book buzz for all ages. A gardener, she writes for California's Flowers by the Sea nursery. She has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from UC Berkeley, a Master of Arts in education from CU Denver, and has taught K-12.