How roof battens form the basis of a high-performance roof system

Work in progress on a roof with clay tiles

A strong and reliable construction requires a strong and reliable base and that’s why the right choice of roof battens is essential for creating a high-performance roof system. Marley’s JB Red roof battens are the only machine-graded battens on the market, enabling you to build a durable and trustworthy roof foundation to which other elements can be added.

The role of roof battens

The primary role of roof battens is to provide a secure fixing point, allowing the roof tiles to be nailed in place. Other roofing products may also be fixed to the battens. Battens also provide secure footholds for roofers, meaning that high-quality battens are important for safety reasons as well.

Choosing high-quality roof battens

When choosing roof battens, there are many characteristics to consider, including the grading, as well as the size of the battens and the preservative method used. Details such as the manufacturer and origin of the timbers can also provide peace of mind that the products used are genuine and meet the required standards.

BS 5534: 2014 + A2:2018 is the code of practice for installing slates and tiles to new-build pitched roofs and vertical cladding. It also covers re-roofing projects and extensions. It aims to ensure that roofs are constructed to withstand heavy winds and other adverse weather conditions, thereby increasing their overall safety and longevity.

The standard requires mechanical fixing of all roof tiles, including ridge and hip tiles - meaning they are screwed or nailed to battens rather than relying on mortar to hold them in place. It also sets out requirements for roofing battens, stating that products must be graded and marked with BS 5534 to be classified as roofing battens.

Section 4.11 of BS 5534 sets out the requirements for battens, such as tolerance for distortion and permissible defects, and grading is covered in Annex D. The battens must also be marked according to the provisions of section 4.11.52 and be supplied with appropriate documentation according to section

Create a high-performance roof with the Marley complete roofing system

As experts in roofing systems, Marley offers everything you need to construct a high-performance roof from the battens up.

Our JB Red battens are the only UK machine-graded roof battens with BBA Certification. They are produced from high-grade, slow-grown and kiln-dried sideboards. They meet all the requirements of BS 5534, providing strength and stability.

Because we control every aspect of our batten manufacturing process, from the raw materials supplied from mills in Scandinavia to treatments, testing and distribution, we oversee quality at every stage, ensuring our JB Red battens meet every requirement.

If you are specifying roof battens for your next project, please visit our JB Red product page for more information. You can also contact a member of our technical team for additional support. 

Category: Timber