Friday, June 22nd, 2018 by Sydney Stewart
An attic with improper ventilation can quickly turn into a steamy sauna in the warm summer months. In the winter, it can become a damp cave that potentially damages your home and roof. Heat and humidity rise from the interior of your home and can become trapped in the attic. Additionally, if your existing ventilation was not installed properly, there could be issues with the balance of inflow and exhaust. This not only has the potential to damage the structure of your home, but often means higher A/C costs during the summer. Luckily, ventilation is an easy solution to this problem that can be done when you’re getting a full roof replacement or as an independent job.
Increased Cooling Costs
Your attic traps heat and becomes hotter than it is outside. This means on a sunny, 90-degree day, your roof can reach upwards of 140 degrees. This heat filters down into your home and causes your air conditioning unit to work harder and stay on longer, increasing energy costs.
Improper roof ventilation is not just an issue in warm summer months. In the winter, the moist air in your home rises into the attic. Without the ability to vent out, it becomes trapped and condenses on the cold surfaces. This is a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Additionally, this can cause the decking of your roof to buckle, swell, and rot. This can cause serious damage to your home.
When you are heating your home in the winter and the heat rises to the roof, this will cause the existing snow to melt if not properly ventilated. While this seems like a positive thing, the water running down your roof will freeze when it reaches your eaves and gutters. This freezing means the water expands and potentially causes damage to your roof.
Traditional Box Vents on a Home in Rockford, IL
If you are unsure whether your attic has the proper ventilation, it is important to contact a professional roofing and remodeling company like My-Pros. Our Pros can tell if your roof is properly ventilated and if not, if any resulting damage has occurred. As a homeowner, you can also look for the signs that you may need attic ventilation installed.
1) Look for the vents on the roof. This may seem like a no-brainer but look at your roof and look for vents. If you don’t see any box vents or turtle vents and you’re unsure whether a ridge vent has been installed, you likely do not have proper ventilation.
2) Feel for heat on your ceiling. On a warm, sunny day, touch the ceiling of your home. If your ceiling is considerably warmer than the inside of your home, heat is likely trapped in your attic.
3) Ice dams in the winter. If you have ever noticed thick ridges of ice on your eaves in the winter, your attic is likely trapping heat and causing snow to melt and re-freeze on your eaves.
4) Look for dampness or frost. In the winter, go up into your attic. If you notice dampness or front on the rafters, your attic is holding in moisture, which can lead to a myriad of structural issues.
Ridge Vent on a Home in Rockford, IL
There are three main types of ventilation that can be installed on your home. These three types all have various benefits and price points. Each type can be installed on your roof by our Pros, depending on your current ventilation or the ventilation that is best suited for your home.
1) Box Vents – Box vents are one of the most economical ventilation options for your home. They are good for homes that have existing soffit ventilation. They also work well in open attics. Be sure that box vents are installed on both sides of your roof for balanced ventilation as well as lower of the roof. These vents should not be installed too close to the peak of the roof.
2) Turtle Vents – Also referred to as louvers, turtle vents are most commonly seen on older homes or buildings that already have static vents. These are also an economical option, though they are not as aesthetically appealing as other types. These should be installed evenly spaced as close to your peak as possible.
3) Ridge Vents – These are the most efficient of all the vent types. They are discreet vents installed on the peak of your home and covered with matching ridge cap shingles. These create a constant flow of air through your home when combined with proper soffit ventilation. Though they are more expensive than other options, they are almost impossible to see and create the best airflow for your attic.
Your My-Pros project manager will inform you about the best ventilation for your home during a roof replacement based on the existing structures. Roof ventilation is an important part of the re-roof process that should be handled by professionals.