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Gable End Braces

Gable end braces help support gable ends from hurricanes and high winds.

What is a Gable End Brace

gable end roof figure

Figure 1

A gable end is a triangular section above your home’s walls that connect the home to the roof (see Fig. 1). As you can see the gable has a high surface area exposed to the wind which can take a beating during extreme weather. In addition, gable ends are not often secured properly and this can lead to disasters during hurricanes.

Risks From Unbraced Gable Ends

unbraced gable end damage

Damage from a windstorm to an unbraced gable end roof

Typically the higher the gable end the higher the risk as this has more surface area. Conversely, the shorter in height the gable end the lower the risk associated with the gable end.

Short gable end walls do not have a high risk of failure except for the loss of roof sheathing. High ones can expose houses to very substantial risks and should be checked to make sure they are properly braced.

Due to the high surface areas associated with gable ends there is an accompanying increase in risk for wind damage.

Benefits of Gable End Braces

Gable end bracing is added by placing 2×4’s in an “X” pattern from the top center of the gable to the bottom center brace of the fourth truss, and from the bottom center of the gable to the top center brace of the fourth truss  The braces are secured using two 3-inch, 14-gauge wood screws or two 16d common nails to attach the 2×4’s to the gable and to each of the four trusses.

The reinforcement of horizontal beams against the gable minimizes the bowing that occurs as the pressure within the house varies during a storm.

In addition to reinforcing the integrity of your roof, gable end bracing can help earn discounts on your homeowner’s insurance.

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