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Explore how roof battens and purlins can be the right choice for your project

There are many components that contribute to the stability of a metal building. Roof battens no matter how you look at them are a structural element of any roof. Roof battens and purlins are one of those constantly misdiagnosed and overlooked aspects of construction. But they provide some extremely important structural functions to protect your home.

The two words –‘roof battens’ and ‘purlins’ are often used interchangeably and both are the long strips, usually wood, used for the attachment of the roofing material. But a “purlin” is actually applied directly onto the roof rafters, extending perpendicular between them, while a “roof batten” is nailed to roof sheathing or applied over a current roof for installation of new roof.

Types of roof battens:

There are various types of roof battens. They are typically made from wood and should be properly painted to maintain their aesthetic appearance. Generally, battens should be replaced every three to four years, depending on the overall appearance of the roof. This is a necessary part of the roofing process, as battens are generally located beneath shingles, which will eventually wear down.

Battens should also be preservative-treated to protect them from wood rot. There are different types of preservatives available, and different manufacturers offer different guarantees. For example, some Battens contain a patented red pigment that prevents fungi and insects from attacking the battens. In addition, these battens are FSC and PEFC certified.

Benefits of roof battens:

Roof battens and purlins are crucial components of a roof system, providing both strength and a breathable space. They can be made from wood, metal, or composite materials. Battens are also a great way to improve energy efficiency in your home by increasing air flow and preventing heat transfer from the roof deck to the attic. Battens are used to raise roof tiles off the deck, creating a space where air can flow. Studies have shown that battens improve energy efficiency. They also help reduce the stress on your HVAC system.

The air gap that battens create between roof sheathing and the roof can be very helpful as a thermal barrier. Also, rigid insulation can also be placed in the space between the battens. Some of the roof installations go a step further, and utilize the battens running up the roof, with a second layer of the battens running perpendicular over them, to provide the ventilation between the roofing material and sheathing at the ridge.

Roofing plays a very important part of a building, not only aesthetically but structurally. It is important that a roof, whether flat or pitched, is designed and installed correctly. Rain and wind can play havoc with a roof that has been installed badly or to the incorrect manufacturers’ specification; for example, the incorrect pitch, the incorrect application, or poor workmanship.

Dimensions of roof battens:

The dimensions of roof battens can vary widely. Some battens are shorter, while others are longer. The length of each batten depends on the number of rows. For example, a roof with 15 rows of tiles has a batten length of 300 feet. The batten length is then added to the length of the roof.

The dimensions of roof battens must comply with certain standards to ensure quality. The BS 5534 standard specifies the grading of battens and lays out minimum requirements for timber batten size. It is worth noting that different manufacturers may offer different warranties for different types of battens.

Resilient battens

Resilient roof battens are used to construct roofs. They are laid horizontally or in cross hatch sections, and the spacing between battens is dependent on the size of tiles, shingles, or panels to be supported. This system is time-consuming to install, and requires precise measurements. Mis-measurements can result in a batten spacing that is too wide or too close to the edge of the roof, which can cause problems for the whole roof.

Learn more about metal roofing

Our expert team of tradesmen have decades of experience in crafting and manufacturing every element you need for your roof, gutters, sidings, carports and more. Contact us for more information and prices on our roof battens or any of the other great products we offer.