HOW TO BUILD A CUSTOM HOME, Part 20: Roof Trusses

In this series, the professionals at the B.O.L.D. Company will take you through the process of building a custom home in the Greater Cincinnati Northern Kentucky area. From plan and lot selection, to mortgage approval, to the actual construction, we’ll take you behind-the-scenes each week for an inside look at a different part of the process.

This week, we look at framing and finishing the roof of a new home:

Quite commonly today, roofs are framed using pre-fabricated roof trusses, which are manufactured in a factory, trucked to the jobsite, and set with a crane. Engineered and manufactured in a controlled setting, roof trusses enable a faster, more economical, and more exact roofing project, even for complicated roof styles. In some situations, hand-framed roofing can still be a better option, but, by and large, roof trusses have become the norm.

Roof trusses sit on top of, are supported by, and are anchored to, the outside walls of the house. They are installed from one gable end of the house to the other. They are also secured to each other with 2×4 bracing, to create stability and strength in all directions.

The trusses themselves hang over the outside walls of the house, creating the eaves. On the gable ends, however, the overhang is created by installing rakeboards.

Soon after the trusses are fully installed, the roof exterior will be completed in order to keep the framing and other parts of the interior safe from the elements, both rain and wind. The surface of the roof is formed with sheets of OSB (oriented strand board, similar to plywood) which are attached one to another with plywood clips–this strengthens the surface of the roof and helps to avoid bowing. The OSB is also, of course, nailed to the trusses. On top of the OSB sheeting, black felt paper is laid. Felt paper is an underlayment for the shingles which provides waterproofing for the roof–any water that might find its way through or around the shingles will be repelled by the felt paper, which is filled with a bituminous waterproofing material, such as tar. The shingles are then laid atop the felt paper and installed according to manufacturer’s instructions.

As always, keep in mind that this is a generalization of common practices for the framing and roofing of a new home. Local building codes, available products, and engineering practices from one plan or one region to another may significantly change one or a few parts of this process. Each individual job deserves individual attention from an experienced contractor. For more information, contact the BOLD Company today!

B.O.L.D. Homes, a B.O.L.D. company, has been established as among the premiere Greater Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky custom home builders since 1986. We have well over 500 customer designed homes to our credit. Work one-on-one with the owners of the company – including a licensed real estate broker, a licensed real estate agent, a licensed professional engineer, and a CAD draftsman/designer – to design your dream home full of the features important to you. We can help you find a balance between luxury and budget.

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