Nailing Roof Sheathing

One of the most important investments for your home is your roof. Without a roof, we literally would not have our homes. The roof protects us from the elements and closes off our homes for us. Roof sheathing is a very important key element to your roof and to your home’s protection.

The roof sheathing protects your home from water and other environment elements seeping into your home through the ceilings. Here are some tips to help you with nailing roof sheathing to your home.

Sheathing Material

Traditionally, sheathing material 15/32 inch in thickness boards are used on homes. This will protect the home from potential high winds and even from potential snow melting damage that can occur through roofs. It is recommended that oriented strand board be used for your sheathing material.

In areas that have a large amount of changes in environment you will want to select sheathing material that has an exposure rate of one or even better.
It is important that you select sheathing panels that are specifically designed for spacing.

The material will shrink and expand with the environmental changes. Typically, the panels are pre-cut to 48 inches by 96 inches to use on the roof. When nailing roof sheathing to the roof be certain that no panel piece is less than approximately four feet long.

Types of Nails

The types of nails that are used for sheathing material are extremely important to making certain that your roof will remain secure for many years. It is recommended that you use an 8d nail be used for the main areas of the sheathing material when attaching to the roof.

For areas that require special cuts and layout, it is recommended that you use deformed shank nails to provide the best security. These types of nails would be used in areas such as the ridges, the gable areas and the eave areas of the roof. A round head is preferable over the other type of nail heads.

Gable Nailing

Gables are a particularly vulnerable area to a home in high winds or bad storms. It is important to place extra nailing to provide support between the sheathing material and the gable truss. You will want to use the deformed shank nails in this area and space them close to one another to offer additional support and roof security.

Another important point for the gable area is the connection to the ladder framing area of the gable. Be certain that the deformed shank nails are a minimum of four inches apart from one another to provide the extra stability that is needed in this area of the roof.

Ridge Vent Roof Sheathing

The ridges on homes can be tricky. It is important not to cut continuous venting slots in the sheathing material if your home is in high wind areas. If the home is non-changing climate conditions, you can follow the standard practice of continuous venting and nail normally with the deformed shank nails.

However, if the home is in high wind areas it is suggested that you add an additional block set to the sheathing material and nail closely together. You can even drill vent holes into the roof sheathing in these areas instead of using the continuous venting slots to make the roof area more secure for high winds or large amounts of snow fall.