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Have You Ever Hidden A Tension Tie In The Floor Space Beneath An A-Frame Attic?

Asked by Glen on September 01, 2016

Have you ever hidden a tension tie in the floor space beneath a finished A-frame attic?

timber frame attic space

Answered by Margaux Friant

Hi Glen,

That is pretty much how attic roof systems work. The tension loads are transferred through the floor. You would normally only need to add tension ties if you want to remove the floor to open up the space below, or if there was an error in the original construction. Then some way of resolving the tension forces would be required. A lot depends on the location of your building. For instance, along the coast in hurricane zones it is possible for the forces to reverse as the wind tries to suck the roof off of the house. Then compression forces are also resolved in the attic floor, or need to be accounted for in the new structural design.

We always recommend having a structural engineer have a look.

Best regards,



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