roofing structure-Roofs by Peak

What Supports a Roofing Structure?

Peak Roofing and Exteriors is here to inform you of what supports a roofing structure. A good roof of a home protects you from the outside world but to get such a roof you must deal with the contractors. This is good, but usually, you do not get what we are saying about the roof or what are some of the essential parts of the roof. The structure has many parts and we have listed most of them to help you understand.

What Is a Roofing Structure?

Before starting a roof, you need to place some structure on which the roof is placed which is its support. This frame is usually termed the Roofing Structure. This part of the roof is invisible to the people as it is under the shingles and once the construction is done, you cannot see it.

This structure consists of beams, trusses, and rafters. In a typical residential home, all these structures are made up of lumber. It is easy to produce, cheap and strong.

The structure of the roof depends on what kind of architecture you have and the kind of roof covering you have on the roof. Usually, homes in the residential areas have medium-sized roofing structures while some homes have large structures.

The roof covering depends on the structure of the roof; for example, if you are using lightweight asphalt shingles, the roofing structure does not need to be that sturdy or heavily built. But if you are using slate as shingles which are quite heavy then you must use a strong roofing structure for this.

Parts of a Roofing Structure

Now that you know what a roofing structure is, let’s tackle the biggest issue — all the parts and pieces that hold it together.


Rafters are the diagonal beams that provide the main support to the roofing deck, and it meets at the top. This is the part that makes the roof steep.

Collar Beam

These are horizontal. They connect two rafters by meeting them at the ridge. These collar beans do not make the rafters sag at all, and they are placed under the ridge. Sometimes, we call these beams collar ties.

Ridge Board

There is a ridge board at the top of the roof. This beam holds all the rafters together and they meet at the ridge board. They are usually made up of timber or metal and this is the part that is keeping everything together and creating the necessary cohesion.

Top Plate

This is another supporting beam that connects rafters to the wall studs, and it is the top plate. It is supporting the roofing structure and transfers the load to the foundation and the load-bearing walls.

You might also come across the term cantilevered top plate, which has the same function but is supported only on one end.

Ceiling Joist

These are parallel to collar beams, but they are under them around the base of the construction of the roofing structure. The purpose of this element is to support the rafters from below, and they act like the ridge.

Fascia Board

This board is running right along the lower edge of the roof, and it hides the ends of the rafters. It supports the bottom row of tiles once they are in their place.

Under purlin

These are horizontal beams that you would see around the middle of the rafters, and they are added to the structure to make the rafters more stable and allow them to cover longer spans.


These vertical beams support and transfer the load from underpins and transfer them to the strutting beams. These are added also for the stability of the whole structure.

Strutting Beam

These beams are horizontal and parallel to the ridge board. The main purpose of these beams is to transfer the load onto the load bearings.

For more information, contact your professionals at Peak Roofing and Exteriors at 866-680-0853. We service areas in Bentonville, AR, Abilene, TX, and Monroe, LA.