Most homeowners don’t think about their attic ventilation until there is a problem that needs solving. When it comes to your attic, ensuring proper ventilation helps efficiently move heat and moisture out of your attic. If excess heat and moisture are trapped in your attic without a proper method of escaping, complications can begin to develop, and you may need more extensive repairs or even a full roof replacement to address the issue.
When it comes to proper roof and attic ventilation, there are a few best practices that you can implement to help mitigate and minimize any potential moisture problems in your home. Here are some of our top tips for improving the ventilation in your attic.
How Can I Tell If I Need Better Ventilation?
It can be difficult for homeowners to know if their attic needs better ventilation if they don’t know what to look for during an inspection. However, you do have some tactics at your disposal to figure it out.
- Look for Vents: When you inspect your roof from the outside and inside your attic check to see if you spot existing ventilation systems. Attic fans, square box vents, ridge vents, gable vents, and soffit vents are all designed to help ventilate your attic.
- Existing Insulation: Good insulation is essential to help keep excess heat and moisture from building up in the attic. Typically you want an R-38 value, which would equate to 10 to 14 inches of insulation.
- Look For Ice Dams in the Winter: Along the eaves of your roof, look to see if ice dams have formed after a snowfall or a freezing rainstorm. Warm air escapes from the interior of your home and gets trapped in the poorly ventilated attic. That warm air melts the snow, and once this ice melt moves past the exterior warm wall of your house the ambient temperature refreezes the melted water outside, causing the dams to form. If you notice ice dams on your roof, know that there are plenty of ways to remediate them from the source.
- Check Your Rafters: In the winter, the warm air that rose and got trapped in the attic will begin to condense. Grab your nearest flashlight and look for any signs of dampness or frost buildup.
If you think that your roof needs more ventilation, the challenge becomes improving it and seeing the best results. The best advice revolves around strategically installing more ventilation in your attic to improve the overall airflow and this is best left to professionals!
Proper Type and Placement of Roof Ventilation
Reducing the amount of moisture or heat in your attic requires optimal placement of the vents in your roof. Getting the best use and mileage out of these vents depends on where you place them.
When a roofing contractor looks at your roof, they’ll examine the layout of your attic, the attic’s square footage, and the presence of intake ventilation to determine the proper amount of ventilation and the best type to be installed to help resolve your ventilation issues.
What About Soffit Vents?
Roof vents aren’t the only part of the equation that can reduce the moisture in your home. Combining them with soffit vents in the eaves of your roof is a necessity and can significantly improve the overall efficiency of your attic ventilation system. Many times the soffit vents are choked off by the presence of insulation preventing proper intake.
For the best results, plan to install equal amounts of ventilation at the peak of your roof and the soffit to allow for a steady, equal flow of air from the lowest entry point into your attic to the exhaust vents at the peak. This allows your attic to properly vent and reduce the amount of moisture evenly across the board.
Long Term Benefits of Good Ventilation
Beyond making your attic a more tolerant place in your home, excellent ventilation can provide your home with a wealth of additional benefits. In the summer months, proper ventilation helps reduce gradual heat buildup, cutting costs of keeping your house cool and potentially prolonging the life of your roof’s shingles and HVAC system.. While in the winter months, proper ventilation allows for the heat and moisture to escape, minimizing the potential formation of mold, or premature plywood rot.
Now that you know what to look for to improve your attic’s ventilation, you require an experienced roofing contractor to handle your home roof repair job. With the help of Elegant Exteriors, LLC, you have a team that has worked on countless roofing projects and helped our clients improve their home’s ventilation across the Toms River, NJ area. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!