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Installing Attic Stairs Trusses

I recently undertook a big DIY job – installation of attic trusses. I could not have done it without help from my friend who owns loftconversions-oxford.co.uk, but if you wantto try it yourself here are some instructions.

Installing the First Truss

Place the first truss flush against the wall leading up to the attic opening. The top of the truss should be 1 inch below the attic floor to allow a 1 inch stair tread to mount flush and level with the floor. Hammer this truss to the wall using long 3-inch nails, galvanized for added protections. If there is drywall on the wall you are mounting to, before you place the truss on the wall, find the studs using a stud finder and mark off chalk lines on each one to make this process go much more smoothly. Nail the truss every 18 inches on each stud it crosses.

Second Truss

Install the second truss level with the first. To attach to a wall, simply line up the truss with the first one, then mark along the side, inside and out with a pencil. Install two angle braces at these marks using 3-inch nails or wood screws. The braces must connect with a stud. Use the floor beam joist as the most solid connection point. Slide the truss board in between the two angle braces and have someone hold it secure. Then screw in 2-inch screws through the braces into the truss to secure it in place.

Bottom Truss Support

The two bottoms of the trusses are supported with slatting or bracing. For the outside truss, measure and level the board. Make the measurement exactly the same distance as the top of the trusses. Then screw two angle braces or truss braces to the floor, connecting with a joist or brace. Screw the truss to the brace using 2-inch screws. Another option is to brace the truss on the inside with a 2×4 or a 2×6 cut to fit alongside the truss, without interfering with the tread or riser. Either option provides an excellent brace for the truss.