If your roof does not have enough pitch to prevent water pooling on a roof window, you will need an upstand. While there are commercial upstands available, you could also use a timber upstand, or even build one yourself.
In this guide, we’re going to look at what a timber upstand is and whether they’re a better fit for you compared to a polycarbonate upstand. Explore your upstand options today and let’s get started.
What Is an Upstand?
An upstand is effectively a small mounting that sits on a roof, below your roof window. It serves several very important purposes.
They Add Pitch for Flat Roofs
If you have a flat roof that lacks sufficient pitch for a roof window, an upstand is necessary to prevent water from pooling on the roof window, which can cause issues and leave smears. For this reason, an upstand is higher at one end than the other, allowing the water to run off the window.
They Create a Space Between Roof and Glass
A glass feature like a roof window should not rest directly on the roof. Not only because of water pooling, but also because it allows for easier and faster replacement of a roof window in the future, as you will not need to change the roof to add a new window or pane of glass.
They Improve Waterproofing Efforts
A leaking roof window isn’t the ideal result for anyone’s home improvement efforts. Without an upstand, waterproofing will be far less effective, as brickwork and other elements of your roof will be exposed to the elements.
Should You Use a Timber Upstand?
A plastic upstand is a popular choice, and they often come with a roof window, such as in this Coxdome opening rooflight. However, not every roof window will come with an upstand already installed, so you may need to make your own arrangements. This is where the choice to use a timber upstand makes a whole lot of sense.
A timber upstand offers great natural insulation for your roof window, but it can also be very cost-effective, if you make it yourself. If you consider yourself to be a handyman or have strong woodworking skills, making your own upstand should not prove too challenging.
Purpose-built timber upstands are also available, if you would rather not make one yourself. These often boast extra features such as stronger insulation, as well as peace of mind that your upstand is guaranteed, should it fail.
How to Build Your Own Upstand
If you decide to build your own upstand, rather than relying on a purpose-built model, you will first need to source some wood. Offcuts can be used to create an upstand, making this a very cost-effective way to add an upstand to your roof. In this section, we’ll show you a brief outline of how to make one.
1. Measuring for an Upstand
Before you build your upstand, you will need to make sure that you know the size that you’re aiming for. We would recommend having a look at our guide on how to measure for a roof window, which will help you work out the size of roof aperture you’ll need, and thus, the size of the upstand.
2. Creating Your Timber Upstand
Now that you know the measurements that are required, you can begin assembling your upstand. You will need four pieces of wood, two longer and two shorter, to form a rectangle. If you need to create pitch using your upstand, you will also need to cut the pieces to be higher at one end of the rectangle than the other, using a spirit level to create the right level of pitch.
You should fit the corners together using screws or nails, and then add plywood to the top of the upstand to create the base for your roof window.
Now that you have your upstand, you can install it. You will need to lift it into the aperture in your roof and fit it with fastenings, before applying waterproofing.
A Timber Upstand May Be Right for You
If your roof window does not come with an upstand already installed, a timber upstand may be the right choice for you. They offer strong natural insulation, and are not too challenging to make, provided you have good woodworking skills. If, however, you would prefer to use a timber upstand without making it yourself, you could also buy a purpose-built model.
If you have any questions about roof window installation or purchasing a roof window, please don’t hesitate to contact us, and our expert team will be happy to help you.
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<H2>Timber Upstand FAQs
<H3>Do You Need an Upstand?
Regardless of the material you buy for your upstand, one thing is certain, an upstand is necessary. Without an upstand, you risk damage to your roof window and your home. You need one for any kind of roof window, whether it’s a rooflight or a roof lantern.
<H3>What is the Minimum Size of an Upstand?
Your upstand should be at least 150mm high to meet current building regulations.