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Community and Q&A

Fake dormers in 2016

jackofalltrades777 | Posted in Energy Efficiency and Durability on

I see these “green energy builders” putting on tacky fake dormers on the roofs of these homes. Usually 2 fake dormers. Are not fake dormers HUGE energy pigs? Not to mention, always a potential source of roof leaks?

I don’t get it why they put those tacky things on homes in 2016.

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  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    If the fake dormers are part of a vented unconditioned attic, there is no energy penalty -- just an aesthetic penalty. The photo below comes from one of Greg Labbe's blogs.


  2. jackofalltrades777 | | #2

    These dormers are NOT part of the vented unconditioned attic. They contain windows and are part of the CONDITIONED space. I don't have a photo but the fake dormers are part of the conditioned space.

  3. Chaubenee | | #3

    If they are part of the conditioned space then I imagine they are real dormers if they have window.

  4. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #4

    I agree with Joe. If the dormers you saw are (a) part of the conditioned space of the house, and (b) have windows, what makes them "fake"?

  5. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #5

    If there is roof sheathing behind the glass, they are definitely fake. But I don't see any energy penalty (assuming, of course, that the sloped roof assembly is properly insulated).

    And if the sloped roof assembly is poorly detailed or insufficiently insulated, the fault doesn't lie with the fake dormer.

  6. JC72 | | #6

    In my area (Atlanta) I see them with windows but the roof sheathing is still in there behind the windows.

  7. jackofalltrades777 | | #7

    The problem with these dormers is that the roof area only has stuffed in fiberglass batts because of the thin roofline where the dormer is located. The rest of the roof has blown in cellulose. So the cellulose area is R-38 and the dormer can't be above R-19.

  8. Chaubenee | | #8

    I think some dormers look really nice. But I chose not to employ them whatsoever in the design of my home. I wanted a simpler and more dependable roof, a cold attic, less opportunity for leaks, ice dams or other drama... I believe that the fake ones, which are tacked onto the roof, have a window that is painted black on the back, and is there for "looks," is one of the silliest concepts I have ever seen in home building. It is like someone bought a Ford Escort and stuck a vintage spoiler off of a GTO Judge on the deck lid. I am bewildered by the whole idea. I think it causes future problems for your roof perhaps, but I am nt sure of an "energy penalty" other than the waste of money one spends on this nonsense when they could of put that cash elsewhere.

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