When it comes to gale force winds driven by a hurricane, there aren’t too many normal roofs that can stand up to this force. However, if you live in an area where strong storms are common, you may want to consider securing your roof using hurricane ties. Yes, they can make the difference between waiting out a hurricane in comfort and ending up without a roof on your house. How to install hurricane ties is what we are going to discuss.
1. Examine Your Roof and Purchase the Ties
The first thing you need to do to install hurricane ties is to get up in the attic of your roof and inspect if for the diagonal beams. What you are looking for are the connections between the horizontal beams and the diagonal beams. This is something you need to do, and of course you need to measure as well, so you can buy the proper size of hurricane ties. You will need a hurricane tie for every point of connection between diagonal and horizontal beams.
Now that you have measured, you can go out and purchase the actual hurricane ties. It is recommended to buy the H-1 hurricane ties, as they tend to be the strongest, longest lasting, and easiest to work with as well. You should probably buy a few extra just in case, and always be sure to read the instructions in the product packaging as well.
2. Find the Points of Connection
Before you start installing the hurricane ties, you need to find all the points of connection. In other words, you need to find and mark all connection points between horizontal beams running parallel to the ground. Also, the diagonal beams which run from the horizontal beams up to the middle horizontal beam up above, the beam which is in the point of the roof.
Keep in mind that the hurricane tie will be installed in the place where the diagonal beams meet the horizontal beams. In some cases, you may have to install, or want to install, hurricane ties before the roof is fully built. In this case, you will need to mark the places where you expect the diagonal beams to meet the horizontal beams.
3. Position the Hurricane Ties
Now that you have found where all of the hurricane ties will be going, you need to position them properly. As you can see, hurricane ties come with a space where the diagonal wooden beam can sit in snugly. In order for the hurricane tie to work effectively, the tie needs to be installed so that this gap in the tie is facing forwards into the center of the house.
If you are having issues, remember that it is supposed to attach to the outside of the horizontal beam, with a U-shaped gap pointing forwards, which is where the diagonal beam will sit. This gap in the clip will sit just above the foundation beam — i.e., the horizontal beam.
4. Get to Hammering
Ok, now you have properly positioned all of your hurricane ties, which means that it is now time for you to start securing them using a hammer and nails. In the base plate of the hurricane ties, where they attach to the horizontal beam, you will see predrilled holes for nails, which is where you will be hammering the nails through.
Ideally, for this, you want to use 2.5 inch long nails, which is the recommended length. Keep in mind that if the nails are too short, the structural integrity will be negatively affected.
5. Securing the Diagonal Beam
You have secured the hurricane tie to the horizontal beam, the diagonal beam should be sitting nicely in the U-shaped gap in the tie. If you are putting your diagonal beams in after the hurricane ties, they will need to be placed in this gap.
Either way, once the diagonal beam is sitting in that U gap, once again use your hammer and some nails to secure the diagonal beams to the hurricane ties. You will see the predrilled nail holes just like before. Once the first one is done, the rest should be easy enough. Simply repeat the previous steps until you have secured all diagonal beams to the horizonal beams using the hurricane clips.
Finally, you want to walk around and ensure that everything has been done properly. Give everything a good shake and make sure that it is sturdy, and ensure that you have not missed any nails either. A single nail can make a big difference, especially when it is missing.
You have now installed hurricane ties to your ceiling beams in your house. These are items which can go a long way in saving your house saving your house from extreme winds. If you want to keep your roof secure, and you live in a place where strong winds and hurricanes are common, it’s probably something you want to look into.