Last Updated Jul 9, 2010 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald
A verandah is a fully roofed structure that runs along the outside of a house. As you can imagine, the verandah’s close proximity to the home means that the roof is of utmost importance. Read on to find out more about designing the roof, options for materials, and the best guttering to use, in order to have the best verandah you possibly can.
There are many styles and options that you can opt for in your verandah roof, from a flat design to hips and gables. However, the option that will generally look best is a design that complements your existing roof structure. If you are unsure what that is, it is possible to hire a designer or architect to draw up the perfect structure for you. The goal is to make the verandah look like it belongs to the house and is not an afterthought – the best way to do this is to have complementing roof styles. You will probably want the roof pitch to match.
The two most common materials used in verandah roofing are steel and polycarbonate. Steel is excellent as it allows you to match the colour of your roof to the colour of your home. Colorbond is the most popular type of steel roofing and it has the advantages of looking great, being quick to install, durable, requiring less of a weight load on your house, not rotting, and being weather resistant. Steel is also a cooler option as it is reflective.
Polycarbonate has the advantage of letting in light while keeping out the harmful UV rays. It can also let in winter heat. This is great as many all-steel roofs keep out too much light – mixing polycarbonate with steel or using all polycarbonate can help to keep natural light entering the house. Polycarbonate, however, will not match the home’s colour scheme as well.
When installing guttering and downpipes on your verandah, it is very important that they are separate to the main home’s guttering and downpipes. This is because the existing home will not be able to cope with the additional amount of water that is being captured by the excess surface area of the verandah and this can cause water to leak into the roof or walls of your home and cause water damage. Standard downpipes can be used for the gutter, but ensure that they do not empty close to the foundations of the home. Ideally, they should drain directly to the stormwater drain. The best gutters to use are U-shaped gutters. It is also a good idea to protect your gutters with some kind of mesh so that they do not fill up with debris.