The roof of your house is essential for protecting your home against the elements. Roof framing has come a long way. Homeowners want to ensure they have the best to protect their living space from high wind and rain.
If you’re planning a new roofing project but not sure where to start, here’s some input on trussed roofing systems.
What Is a Trussed Roofing System?
A trussed roofing system is a structural framework made of roof trusses to support the roof. In most residential construction, you will find trussed roofs that rely on external walls for load bearing. However, you may also find some that use bottom chords or other supports.
What Is a Roof Truss?
A roof truss is a structure made of wood or steel designed to support the roof. The truss is custom-built with steel or timber in a series of triangles connected at pin joints.
The series of triangles uses compression and tension with a bottom chord to create a strong structure covering long spans. The sides of the truss use compression and the bottom chords rely on tension.
What Is a Roof Rafter?
Traditionally, the construction industry used roof rafters to frame the roof of a house. People also refer to this as stick framing.
Builders would prepare each rafter on the job site. A roof framed with rafters requires a great deal of labor.
What Is the Difference Between a Rafter and a Truss?
A rafter is an individual wood beam that a contractor builds on-site, and the piece of wood extends from the ridge to the exterior wall. Each piece is measured and cut individually. Rafters support the asphalt shingles, roof deck, and the required loads.
A truss is a factory-assembled structure that supports the roof while tying the outside walls together. Common trusses typically use 2 x 4 wood pieces, and trusses form a web bracing that is very sturdy yet lightweight. A contractor will install trusses side by side across the length of the home.
What Are the Advantages of Roof Trusses?
There are several advantages to using roof trusses in residential homes. The lower price of trusses is one of the most appealing factors. Computer-designed trusses eliminate the labor costs of building rafters. Trusses cost 30% to 50% less than rafters. You will have to consider the shipping costs of your truss package.
They build trusses in a factory based on a specific set of instructions. Trusses are precise, and all measurements will be exact.
Roof frames using trusses can be installed in much less time than roofs using rafters. Contractors can usually install the roof trusses in about a day. Once the trusses are on, they can install the roof sheathing.
A roof truss offers extraordinary strength and support. The truss uses smaller lumber in a design that can support heavy loads over a long span.
The installation of trusses is much easier than building a roof with rafters. A truss package will arrive at the building site with detailed instructions.
Are Trusses Better Than Rafters?
Trusses create a solid roof structure. There are many advantages to choosing trusses over rafters.
Trusses are the better choice for larger construction projects. You can still use rafters for projects such as small sheds, and a structural engineer will recommend a truss roof for most residential homes.
Types of Trusses
There are several types of common trusses that you can choose for your home.
Gable trusses encompass the king post truss, the queen post truss, Howe, and Double Howe trusses, and builders will use any of these trusses for a gabled roof. This type of roof is the most common in the U.S.
Hip trusses are also quite common. They are used to build a roof with slopes on four sides that meet in the center.
Scissor trusses create vaulted ceilings. Homeowners love the open space these trusses offer, and this type of roof system allows for more choices when designing the floor plan.
Attic trusses are typically for garages and sheds. Builders use this truss to create more space for storage.
Mono trusses can be used on a roof, allowing for more sunlight and space. This truss is half a regular and an excellent choice for sheds, garages, and extensions.
A North Light Roof truss is an excellent choice if you build a home with an open floor plan. This truss can cover very large spaces.
A Raised Heel truss is perfect for those that are energy conscious. They raise this type of truss higher than other trusses, and the elevation allows for better ventilation and more insulation, making it more efficient for cooling and heating your home.
How Can I Identify a Truss Roof?
You can identify truss roofs by looking in your attic space. A truss roof uses the exterior walls for support, while rafters use the exterior walls and some interior walls. You will see the rafters fastened to your ceiling joists.
Cost of Roof Trusses
The average cost of a roof truss is between $50 and $450. The price will depend on the type of roof truss and the material you choose, and you will also have to factor in the shipping cost.
A roof truss is affordable, considering the labor cost of having rafters built onsite. You will also be able to have your roofing system installed quickly and efficiently. The faster you install your roof, the faster your home will be safe from the elements.
Can You Install Roof Trusses in any Building?
The type of roof truss will depend on the type of building. Each roof truss has a specific kind of webbing that offers different support levels. For example, a Howe truss provides more support than King Post trusses, so Howe trusses are better for larger buildings. A queen post truss has double posts, so they are excellent for spans of 26 to 39 feet.
Building a home can be an exciting time in your life. You should research and make the best decisions so that your home is as structurally sound as possible. Your choices for your roof are critical because a properly installed roof will last for decades.