AtticZone StoreFloor and StoreFloor Compact are suitable for almost all attics, new and old, including cut, purlin and truss-roofed types. They are frequently fitted in both houses and commercial buildings. Your joists (which span across the floor of your attic) will be need to be made of wood and be at least 1.25″ wide.
For our 4ft metal Cross-Beams to fit, your joists should be either 16″ or 24″ apart on average (measured from the center of each joist to the center of the next one – not the distance in-between them). This covers the majority of attics. Because the Cross-Beams slide along the top of the plastic Tri-Supports or Compact-Supports, they have a tolerance of 3″ in either direction, which helps if your joist spacing is irregular. In fact, this is one of the features that makes our products so easy to fit.
A small percentage of US houses will have joists that have a different spacing. We also offer a 6ft Cross-Beam, if you think that this would be helpful. Please contact us if you would like to purchase this (we need to know your address to calculate shipping costs).
From a StoreFloor perspective, the height of your joists doesn’t matter, and in most US houses they are at least 3″ tall, which is fine. If yours are shorter than that, then we would not advise using your attic for storage.
If you are still unsure whether your property is suitable, please contact us.
Yes, tens of thousands of people have fitted StoreFloor and StoreFloor Compact into their own homes. The parts are lightweight and sized to easily fit through most attic hatches. They are simply screwed to each other and into the joists. Attic boards to fit on top are a bit heavier, but are still an easy DIY job. You can see our installation guides via the drop down menu at the top of this page. Note: for fitting, we recommend the use of an electric cordless screwdriver.
Nonetheless, if you would like someone else to fit this for you, then you can find your nearest installer via the Installers page on this website. We are building this network up all the time; if there isn’t anyone near you right now, then please ask a local joiner or handyperson and we would be happy to guide them with the install.
Yes – We have a growing network of installers that can help. You can find them via the Installers page on this website.
We are building this network up all the time; if there isn’t anyone near you right now, then please ask a local joiner or handyperson and we would be happy to guide them with the install.
The StoreFloor Cross-Beams are 1150mm (about 45″) long. They span over 3 or 4 joists (depending on your building’s joist separation) and have an easy sliding adjustment, in case your joists are not spaced regularly (most aren’t!). The Cross-Beams rest on top of the plastic supports, where they can adjoin each other, or be positioned a few inches apart.
We have two heights of supports, the regular and compact versions. The regular version is 279mm (about 11″) tall. The Compact version is 159mm (about 6″ tall). Both fix to the top of your joists. These sizes allow the full depth of modern insulation levels in your area, plus an air gap above the insulation and below the boards. This air-gap is there to allow ventilation, to remove any possible moisture build-up on the underside of the boards.
The StoreFloor parts have been designed to be very strong but also very light. The 4ft Cross-Beams weight around 2lbs each, the Tri-Supports around 9oz, the Compact-Supports around 6oz and the Uni-Supports around 4oz. Hence, the structure to raise a floor of 12ft x 12ft kit weighs only 73lbs, or 8oz per square foot.
Boards are heavier. These are discussed in more detail in our post about which boards to choose. Their weight depends on the material chosen but is usually around 2lbs per square foot.
In North America, OSB and plywood (around 3/42 thick) are mostly used. In the UK, people mostly use chipboard. You can read all about these in our blog post on this subject.
Most people would like to board their whole attic, but you don’t have to. StoreFloor is modular so you can start small and build more later when your storage requirements go up. Most people choose a square or rectangular deck, or an L or T shape near the hatch. Some people have more than one deck, on either side of the hatch. Don’t board right up to the eaves though, as you’ll want to keep a gap there for ventilation.
No. StoreFloor is built up in sections, a few square feet at a time. So you can build part of your deck – on one side of the hatch for example – and then transfer your possessions on to your new deck before creating the next part of your StoreFloor.
We sell a number of standard-sized kits, from a starter pack (32 sq. ft.) to XXL (576 sq. ft.). If you’d like to build a floor that isn’t one of these sizes, then we have a handy configurator tool on our online shop, which you can use to work out the precise number of parts you need, and buy those individually. Note that we measure decks in multiples of 4ft in each direction, as that is approximately the length of our regular Cross-Beams and of standard attic boards. If you’d like to build a deck that isn’t an exact multiple of 1.2m, then that’s possible; we’d recommend you buy enough parts for the next 4ft up, and then cut the beams and/or boards to suit.
If you’re unsure what you need, then please contact us with your measurements and we will work it out for you.
The StoreFloor system (NOT StoreFloor Compact – see below for info on that) consists of the industrial-grade recycled plastic Tri-Supports (the triangular parts), the galvanised steel Cross-Beams and the industrial-grade recycled plastic Uni-Supports (the vertical legs). The purpose of the Uni-Supports is to spread the load across more joists and to provide extra stiffness to the whole deck.
We provide one Uni-Support for every two Cross-Beams in our StoreFloor kits, which is enough for most people. It’s usual to place the Uni-Supports evenly underneath the deck, or you can concentrate them in the area which is likely to get the most loading or footfall. For storage of up to 5lbs per square foot and infrequent access by one person, this number of Uni-Supports is sufficient and most of our customers do not order any more.
If you wish to have a higher load on the deck, or walk upon it frequently, then we advise one Uni-Support fixed under every Cross-Beam, to provide additional stiffness and to spread the load. Additional Uni-Supports are available to buy from our website or from Amazon. You can see the installation instructions for StoreFloor here.
With StoreFloor Compact, there is only one plastic part: the industrial-grade recycled plastic Compact-Support. This can be used in the same way that both a Tri- and Uni-Support would be used in a StoreFloor kit, by rotating them. You can see a photo of a rotated Compact-Support on our StoreFloor Compact installation instructions page.
We recommend 8 x 1.5″ (4x40mm) wood screws. We supply these with all our StoreFloor kits. Our screws come in packs of 200, so there are usually plenty left over.
(Note that if you buy individual StoreFloor parts, not complete kits, then screws are not included however).
Every StoreFloor Cross-Beam, Tri-Support, Uni-Support or Compact-Support need two screws each. Each 4ft x 1ft attic board needs a minimum of 3 screws each, though you may choose to use up to 6 screws per board for added strength if you wish. If you are using larger boards, then they will require more screws too, of course.
For StoreFloor, the Tri-Supports, by their triangular design, overhang the joist in each direction. Sometimes, e.g near the hatch or a wall, this isn’t wanted. So in these cases, we’d recommend putting a Uni-Support at the end of the row of beams. But make sure that you put a Tri-Support on the next-nearest joist, as this is the main load-bearing part. There is a photo of this here.
For StoreFloor Compact, the Compact-Support can be rotated if needed so that it doesn’t get in the way of a wall or hatch. There is a photo of this on this page, where it’s shown in the center of a Cross-Beam, but it can also be rotated at the end of one, too.
We recommend the use of rectangular attic boards, with a tongue-and-groove along each long edge, so that you can slot one board into the one next to it, for added strength. In addition to this, before StoreFloor was invented, people used to stagger the boards when they laid them, so that each board ended half way along the long edges of the two boards either side of it.
The physics of this used to be that joists can be unevenly spaced in an attic, and if the short end of a board doesn’t rest on a joist, it doesn’t have a tongue-and-groove on that end, so could sag if someone stepped on it. The risk of this happening justifies the extra effort of cutting boards at the ends of each row.
But this is not an issue with StoreFloor, since we recommend that you place our steel Cross-Beams 2ft apart (for attic boards that are 4ft long) so that they do indeed screw into a Cross-Beam and are supported by it, and there is no risk of the ends of the boards sagging.
Hence there is no benefit in staggering attic boards when you use AtticZone StoreFloor, and most people choose to avoid going to the extra effort of cutting boards in half and doing so.
StoreFloor is indeed sometimes used for access, e.g. to create walkways or crawling spaces above the insulation for people who need to maintain boilers, water tanks, solar inverters, MVHR or airconditioning units, etc. You can see a photo a very long access walkway being built in a school on our Flickr page, and builders also sometimes fit it into new houses, too. The usual usual minimum width of the walkway is 4ft (the width of standard attic boards).
However if your walkway is only going to be 4ft wide, then please note the following: The AtticZone plastic supports provide super-strong vertical strength. One of the design requirements of StoreFloor was to minimise parts, in order to speed up installation, and this was achieved by using the interlocking boards of a normal StoreFloor deck to provide the lateral stability. For any deck that is at least two attic boards (e.g. 8ft) wide, then it is very rigid horizontally too, but if you’re only going to use one board’s width then that board will not have another board to push up against and so there may be a small amount of lateral instability. The deck won’t topple over, unless the lateral force was strong enough to rip all the screws out (!), but it may have a little “wobble”. This is easily fixed, either by having a wider walkway, or if you don’t want that, then we recommend that you use extra sections of timber to brace the deck to the joists from time to time.
We don’t recommend that you use StoreFloor to support a water tank, for the following reasons:
If you use Facebook, then you can see photos and reviews posted by lots of AtticZone DIY installers on our UK Facebook page here. We also encourage our US and Canadian customers to leave reviews on our AtticZone Facebook page here. We also have a Flickr site with images too.
We would encourage you to post your own photos on Facebook once you’ve fitted the deck, to help other people see what it’s like!
If you’d like to see the work of our installers, then you can find photos on their websites. Check out our installers page to find your nearest one.
Our online store lets you pay via PayPal or by using your credit or debit card (Visa or Mastercard). If you want to pay via American Express, please select ‘pay via PayPal’ and then you can fund the transaction with your card.
AtticZone does not offer credit, but you can apply for credit (sometimes at 0% interest for the first few months) if you pay via Paypal.
StoreFloor is extremely strong and AtticZone is the only raised attic floor manufacturer to have put its products through robust accelerated lifetime tests in extremes of temperature beyond those normally found in the US. Even in these conditions, our StoreFloor deck survived loads of over 100 lbs per square foot, without failure, making it far stronger than the joists it is screwed on to.
Well, this is a question we can’t answer online, as every house is different! But we can give some general guidance to help you make your own decision.
StoreFloor ensures that any loading is shared across several joists in your attic by forming a lattice-beam type of structure. (In that respect, it’s similar to the old-fashioned way of strengthening an attic by cross-battening with timber, but it’s much less heavy than doing that). This therefore increases the loading that your joists would otherwise be able to take.
The AtticZone parts are designed to be very strong but also very light and you can choose boards of different weights (see the FAQ on the weight of the StoreFloor parts).
Nonetheless, StoreFloor is only intended for storage and occasional access, and we recommend that you don’t overload your joists. If you do, they may bend under the weight and cause cracks in the plasterboard ceiling below. (It’s very rare for a joist to completely snap, you’d have to put a lot of weight in your attic to make that happen).
To summarise, and to be on the safe side, unless you know that your joists are stronger, we recommend loading your attic flooring (assuming 4″ joists) with no more than 5lbs of stored items per square foot, plus the weight of one person accessing them.
Thicker joists will be able to take larger loads. Remember that all houses are different though, and it is your responsibility to load your deck sensibly. If in doubt, please consult a structural engineer.
Visit our install guide page to get a step by step walkthrough on the installation process of our StoreFloor products.
Our US site has recently undergone a rebranding from LoftZone to AtticZone, but don’t worry if you’re looking for our UK site, you can still find it at www.loftzone.co.uk.
Take a look at our rebranded site, we’re sure you’ll love it as much as our Attic boarding!