Creating an Energy Heel Truss

Reference Number: KB-00032
Last Modified: April 6, 2018

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier

Home Designer Professional


How do I make an energy heel truss?


For energy efficiency, some areas recommend an energy heel, or raised heel, so that there is not a cold spot in the intersection where the roof meets the wall. An energy heel raises the roof, and allows for more insulation to reach the outside wall.

To build the roof

  1. Click Build> Roof> Build Roof to display the Build Roof dialog.

  2. On the Roof panel:

  • Under the Build heading, place a checkmark next to Build Roof Planes.

  • Under the Specifications heading, check Trusses (no Birdsmouth).

  • Remove the checkmark next to Automatic Birdsmouth Cut.

  • Specify the Raise Off Plate (+) value to the height you want the energy heel.
    For the purposes of this example, use 12".

  • Click OK to close the Build Roof dialog and generate the roof planes based on these settings.

  • To build the energy heel truss

    1. Click Build> Framing> Roof Truss .

    2. Click and drag to draw a roof truss.

    3. If prompted that, the layer "Framing, Roof Trusses" is not displayed, click Yes to turn on the display of this layer in the current view.

    4. Using the Select Objects tool, select the roof truss and then use the Open Object  edit button to display the Roof Truss Specification dialog.

    5. On the General panel:

    • Check Energy Heel.

    • Check Force Truss Rebuild.

    • Click OK to apply these changes and close the dialog.

    To use the Multiple Copy tool to copy the truss across the structure

    1. Move the truss to the outside edge of your structure. It will snap to the outer edge of framing automatically.

    2. With the truss still selected click on the Multiple Copy  edit tool.

      Multiple Copy is not available in Home Designer Pro; instead, use the Transform/Replicate edit tool. As an example, if you wanted to create 6 copies all separated a certain distance from each other, you would check the Copy box, set the Number of Copies to 6, then check the Move box and set the X Delta to be 24". Negative values can also be set for each of the Deltas if needed.

    3. Click on the Multiple Copy Interval  edit button and verify that the All Trusses is set to the desired spacing and click OK.

    4. Move your cursor over the Move edit handle of the truss. You will notice that your cursor changes to the multiple copy cursor.

    5. Click and drag across your plan to place trusses at regular intervals.

    6. Click 3D> Create Perspective View> Perspective Framing Overview to see the results.

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