The eaves on your home are the section of the roof that extends out beyond the exterior of structure. Eaves serve a number of purposes, from blocking the hot summer sun to directing rainwater away from the side of the house. They are also commonly called the overhang or soffit (although the soffit is actually the covering that is applied on the underside of the eave).
In passive solar home design, eaves are strategically designed to ward off summer solar radiation and allow it in during winters when the sun moves lower on the southern horizon. Aside from that, eaves vary widely in terms of distance they project from the exterior walls. Especially on flat or low-pitched roofs, eaves may project a considerable distance to provide shade for patios and walkways.
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