Design SuiteRoof preferences

Roof faces and roof objects include the ability to define components, set roof attributes, and more. Roof preferences are set from the Roof Preferences dialog box when creating a roof face or roof object. Some of the parameters can be edited later from the Object Info palette.

Click to show/hide the parameters.Click to show/hide the parameters.



Roof Style

From the Resource Selector, double-click a roof style to apply it (see Using roof styles).

If a selected roof style's parameters are edited in the Roof Preferences dialog box, the roof style automatically changes to unstyled, indicating that the edited style must be saved as a new style to save changes (alternatively, the changes can be applied as an unstyled roof and they are not saved).

Convert to Unstyled

Converts a styled roof to unstyled

Save Preferences as Roof Style

Saves the current preference settings as a new roof style. The Assign Name dialog box opens; enter a roof style name.




Displays a sectioned preview of the roof structure, including any defined components. The top of the preview indicates the top part of the roof as it will be drawn.

Overall Thickness

Displays the thickness of the roof. The roof thickness is always determined by the thickness of its components; a roof always has one component by default.

Edit Roof Attributes

Opens the Roof Attributes dialog box, to specify the roof fill and pen settings; see Editing roof attributes


Select whether the datum is applied to the top or bottom of the designated component; the indicator in the Datum column updates accordingly


Lists the components that form the structure of the roof, in order from top to bottom as displayed in the preview. To change the order of a component, click and drag within the # column.

If multiple components are selected, changing the order moves all selected components to the new location.


A datum is the reference point for elevation settings (it does not change with any changes to the roof thickness or definition). Click in the Datum column to designate the datum component. An indicator in the column shows whether the datum is placed on the top or bottom of the component. To change the datum position, either click on the indicator to switch the placement, or click Top of component or Bottom of component.

Other Component settings

The remaining columns in the component list display the current settings for the roof, from the Roof Component Settings dialog box


Opens the Roof Component Settings dialog box to define the components of the roof; see Creating roof components for information on creating components


Opens the Roof Component Settings dialog box to edit the attributes of one or more selected components; changes are made to all selected components. Alternatively, to edit a single component, double-click the component to open the Roof Component Settings dialog box.


Duplicates one or more selected roof components; the duplicates are added to the component list right below the originally selected components


Deletes one or more selected roof components; the roof thickness is adjusted accordingly

Insertion Options



Specifies the default class for the roof


Roofs can participate in Energos energy analysis calculations (see Energos energy analysis module). Vectorworks Architect is required to conduct an energy analysis; however, energy-related parameters can be specified here for informational purposes.

Include in calculations

When selected, the roof is eligible to be included in energy calculations, depending on the energy analysis settings for layer/class, element inclusion, and so on

Object Boundary Type

Select the type of roof (exterior or foundation).

The system list can be modified; see Specifying system sets. Editing the system parameters, or adding new ones, allows the exterior and interior RS (surface resistance) values to be specified. If the selected boundary roof calculations are not satisfactory, edit the system list to be extremely specific about the roof surface resistance parameters.

For a finer level of detail about the boundary roof, click Advanced. The Advanced Settings dialog box opens. Specify advanced settings.

Exterior Material: For exterior roofs, indicates the general color. The system list can be modified; see Specifying system sets. The Absorptivity and Emissivity factors are automatically calculated and displayed.

Reduction Factor Shading: When the roof is shaded (especially during the summer), enter a shading reduction factor from 0–1, where 0 (zero) indicates total shade and 1 indicates no shade.

Calculated R-Value/U-Value

Based on the location of the roof within the building (boundary type) and orientation of the heat flow (surface resistance values), the wall R-Value/U-Value is calculated and displayed. This value, along with the area of the roof, is critical for a correct assessment of the building envelope in energy calculations.

Override calculated R-Value/U-Value

Select this option to override the calculated R-Value/U-Value and enter a manual value for the roof instead in Manual R-Value or Manual U-Value 


The Object Info palette Render tab has additional texturing controls for existing objects; see Managing object textures from the Object Info palette and Textures on objects with components. Textures applied from the Object Info palette override the textures set here unless the texture is set by style.

Use component textures

Uses the textures defined for the roof components to texture the roof; this setting is recommended for the best drawing accuracy.

This option can also be selected for an existing roof from the Render tab of the Object Info palette.

Use object textures

Uses the textures defined below for the roof parts 


Applies the texture selected in Texture to the selected parts of the roof

Revert to Overall

If a part was assigned a texture but it should inherit its texture from Overall instead, select the part and click Revert to Overall. The part moves back below the divider in the Part list, and (from Overall) displays as its texture name.


Applies the selected texture to the selected Part. If Class Texture is chosen, uses the texture defined by the roof’s class; see Concept: Applying textures by class. Any roofs with that roof style use the texture defined by the roof’s class for that part of the roof (unless overridden). If Texture is chosen, from the Resource Selector, double-click a texture to apply it to the selected Part. The texture set here overrides the object class texture.

Textures can also be set from the Render tab of the Object Info palette. Textures applied from the Object Info palette override the textures set here.


Specify roof information. This information can be included in a roof style schedule. These parameters are optional; enter text only where desired.

If these roof preferences should be saved as a roof style, click Save Preferences as Roof Style. See Creating roof styles.

A saved or selected roof style is saved as a resource in the file, and displays in the Resource Manager and in the Roof Style list on the Create Roof Face dialog box and Create Roof dialog box.

Creating roof faces

Creating roof objects

Using roof styles

Editing roof objects


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