How To Look At A House

McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of  

site-built, mobile/manfuactured and modular homes

What is the maximum span allowed for ridge boards?

Monday, February 25, 2019

A ridge board provides a bearing surface where pairs of rafters meet at the peak of a roof, and also helps with alignment of the rafters as they are installed. But a ridge board does not carry any load, so there is no maximum span.

    A ridge beam, which actually supports the rafters on either side of it, is a different animal. It must be sized to carry the live and dead loads of half of the rafter spans on both sides of it. See our blog post Is a ridge board/beam required for a roof framed with rafters? to learn more about the difference between the two.

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  To learn more about roofs and attics, see these other blog posts:

• Why is my roof sheathing sagging between the trusses?

• Why is granule loss a problem for an asphalt shingle roof? 

• What are the mistakes to avoid when doing attic improvements?

• What causes roof shingles to curl up at corners?  

• What causes shingles to buckle along a line on the roof?

• What causes leaks at a fake roof dormer? 

• What causes a sagging roof ridge line?

• What causes bubble-like blisters in a built-up and gravel roof?  

• Why does it cost so much more to replace a steep roof than a low slope roof? 

• What is "ponding" on a flat roof?

• Is an attic required to have a light by the building code? 

• How can I inspect my roof for hurricane damage?

• Why is premature curl of roof shingles a problem?

• How can I tell if a roof has more than one layer of shingles? 

• What are the common problems with attic insulation? 

• What is the life expectancy of an asbestos cement shingle roof? 

• What's the average lifespan of a roof?

• Why is it a mistake to replace a roof and not replace its flashings? 

• Why is there no attic access hatch in the house?

• What is the building code requirement for an attic access hatch, scuttle, or door? 

• Does a roof with multiple layers of shingles last longer?

• What can I do to prevent roof leaks?

• Are roof trusses better than roof rafters (stick framing)? 

• Why is a popped nail in a shingle roof a problem? How do I fix it?

• What are the most common problems with wood roof trusses?

• What causes a lump or dip in the roof? 

• If my roof is not leaking, why does it need to be replaced?

• How can I be sure my roofing contractor got a permit?

• How many layers of roofing are allowed on a home? 

• What are the dark lines running parallel to shingles on my roof?

• Can metal roofing be used on a low slope/pitch roof? 

• How can I make my roof last longer?  

• What are the warning signs of a dangerous attic pull-down ladder?

• How can I find out the age of a roof? 

• Should I buy a house that needs a new roof?

• Should I buy a house with an old roof? 

• What are those metal boxes on the roof?

• What does "lack of tab adhesion" in an asphalt shingle roof mean?

• Why do roof edges start leaking?

• Why do my dormer windows leak? 

• Do home inspectors go on the roof? Do they get in the attic?

• Should I put gutters on the house? 

• How much of a roof truss can I cut out to make a storage platform in the attic? 

• What's the difference between an "architectural" and a regular shingle roof? 

• What does a home inspector look for when examining a roof? 

• Do stains on the ceiling mean the roof is leaking?

• How can I tell if the house needs a new roof?  

 Why does my homeowner's insurance want a roof inspection?

• What are the hazards to avoid when going into an attic? 

Is a house required to have an attic?

   Visit our ROOF AND ATTIC page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles.

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