Three Tips for Choosing a Cupola for Your Home

Cupolas have been decorating the big forts to churches, homes in high tech societies, town hall buildings, and barns for many centuries. A cupola is an architectural addition to the home installed at the rooftop. It is an enclosed dome-shaped structure with openings.

Earlier, the cupola was installed for ventilation and illumination of the area beneath it. However, as the time passes, it also starts serving decorative purposes. Nowadays, cupolas are more famous for its artistic looks than functional use. A large variety of shapes and designs of cupola are out in the market, so many so that one can get confused easily which one will suit best for his or her home.

Choosing the right size and shape of the cupola is very important because if you don’t get right, then cupola might not serve the desired purpose. Therefore, we have laid down the three tips which you can follow for choosing cupola for your home.

Here are the tips:


Too large or too small cupola, in either way, can disturb the looks of home. Therefore, choosing the right size of the cupola is very important. The general guideline to choose the size of the base of the cupola is that it should be minimum one inch of the cupola to every one foot of the unbroken roofline. This thumb rule holds good for a barn and small structures.

For multi-story building, the base of cupola should be 1.5 inches of cupola per foot of the unbroken roofline. However, if your rooftop is large, you can double the width of the cupola base for every foot of the uninterrupted roofline. Also, there is no hard and fast rule of installing one cupola for the rooftop. You can also choose the two smaller cupolas than one large cupola.


The shape of cupola has a great impact on its visual effects. Most popular shapes of cupola include round, hexagonal, square, and octagonal. Cupola has three parts- Base, Mid-section, and Roof.

Base and mid-section of the cupola generally follow the same shape pattern. However, the design of the roof of the cupola can vary a bit. It can be in the shape of a dome, pyramid, or bell. Louvers or glass windows make the mid-section of the cupola. It allows light and air to pass to the area beneath it.


Cupolas are exposed directly to the harsh climatic conditions. You do not want to climb up to the rooftop for repairing the cupola every now and then. Therefore, choosing a right material of cupola is very necessary. Fortunately, you have a lot of options available to choose from. Cupola made of metal, vinyl, marble, and wood is the most popular one.

Metal Cupolas

Cupola made of aluminum and copper looks very attractive. Copper cupola looks just elegant, traditional, and authentic. It is strong, durable, and requires little maintenance, and lasts for years. Aluminum cupolas also have the same properties and can be polished to any desired color.

Vinyl Cupolas

Vinyl cupola gives the metallic finish but not made of the metals. It is impervious to water and can easily withstand harsh weather easily. It does not need any maintenance work and less expensive than metal cupola.

Wood Cupolas      

Nothing can replace the natural charm and finishing of the wood cupola. It is made of cedar wood and needs to be treated with chemical solutions to make it water resistant and pest resistant. Wood cupola requires little maintenance and care, but its charming looks compensate for that.

Marble Cupolas       

These are made of marble and almost maintenance free and last for a lifetime. Marble cupolas are the perfect choice for adding an element of elegance to your rooftop.

These are the three tips for choosing right cupola for your home.

The Bottom Line

The cupola is the center of attraction of the rooftop. It can make or break the looks of home. And once installed, lasts for years. Therefore, it is necessary to choose the right cupola for your home.

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