Structural and Roof Damage: Trusses vs. Rafters

The aftermath of a hurricane brings as much stress and confusion as it does damaged homes and debris. Homeowners have so many considerations to keep in mind as they select companies to repair the damage, organize the various contractors to ensure all necessary repairs have been completed, then handle all insurance claims. Those affected by the hurricane have enough to think about without the additional hassle of discovering that a hired contractor can’t complete the work they need.

Differing structures have differing requirements for restoring them to a state of repair stronger than before the storm. A small detail such as the specific kind of roof your home possesses can affect how your home is repaired, and who you hire to repair it. Whether you have rafters or trusses, A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction can help take much of the stress out of fixing your home after a hurricane.

Putting a Roof Over Your Head – Rafters or Trusses

The two main types of roof supports are rafters and trusses. Both will do a fine job in keeping the roof over your head, but each functions in a slightly different manner. The type of construction you have will dictate the approach on how to repair your home.

You will find rafters in most older homes, as they were the popular construction method for many years. This type of roof is generally framed on-site and is often called “stick” or “conventional” construction. Long planks stretch down from a central beam to meet the outside walls, which creates the support for the roof. Working with these beams are ceiling joists, which run horizontally across the floor of the attic space. Once all the all the rafters and proper bracing is installed in connection with ceiling joist, this creates a strong, stable attic space and roof.

Trusses, on the other hand, are often built in factories off-site and brought in while the home is being built. Structural boards create a triangular webbing that both supports the roof and ties it to the outside walls. Several of these pre-constructed trusses are placed over the length of the house at even intervals, and distribute the weight of the roof evenly throughout both the walls of the home and the trusses themselves.

Finding the Best Contractors for Your Type of Roof

Finding an experienced roofing contractor is key to guaranteeing high-quality craftsmanship because they will have extensive industry knowledge that an inexperienced or under qualified contractor may not have. For instance, an inexperienced contractor may not know the difference between dead loads and live loads, which is important to know if the contractor plans to do structural work related to the roofing. Simply put, the dead load is how much the roof weighs in total before it is installed and in service, whereas live load refers to the amount of dynamic weight from intended use—meaning how much the roof will weigh once large appliances like an HVAC unit are installed, or during roof repairs while people and materials are on top of it.

It is also imperative to hire a contractor that not only understands the type of roof you have, whether it is rafters, trusses, or a flat construction, but also knows how the roof affects the rest of the structure. Hiring a company that also has knowledge of the local Florida building codes and their specific challenges is also important. You can find both in A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction.

A.J. Wells can not only replace roofs but can also repair all structural damage to your home. Furthermore, our entire team of skilled craftsmen have general contracting knowledge and experience to ensure your home is safe for you and your family. We are committed to bringing excellent service to our friends in Northeast Florida. Contact us today at A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction!

Get Your Roof Inspected for FREE

Request a FREE roof inspection, and protect your family and your home investment this hurricane season.