Your roof’s ventilation system may be a comparatively small element of the whole, yet it is nevertheless an important component that helps prevent high cooling bills, as well as excessive condensation and its effects. In today’s post, damaged roof repair contractor Barnett Roofing discusses the signs that your roof needs better ventilation.
How Does Roofing Ventilation Work?
Warm and humid air naturally moves upward, which, in a typical home with a sloped roof, tends to collect in the attic. If not vented, trapped heat and moisture can result in damage to roof insulation and roofing structure, as well as the items stored in it. For finished attics, this can make the area very uncomfortable to stay in.
A standard roof ventilation system features vents at the ridges that utilize the same upward motion to passively vent warm and humid air. The resulting negative pressure pulls cool and fresh air through vents at the soffit. Larger roofs may require exhaust fans installed on the rooftop. Skilled roofing contractors should be able to install these fans without resorting to shingle roof replacement.
The Effects of Improper Ventilation
Improper ventilation happens when either vent is incorrectly sized. Ridge vents that are too narrow won’t release warm air fast enough; too wide and it could let rain, debris, and small animals into the attic. Soffit vents that are too narrow won’t let enough fresh air into the attic, while too wide would leave the roof vulnerable to uplift. If you notice one or more of the following signs, improper ventilation may be part of the problem.
High Energy Bills — Heat from the attic can radiate back into your indoor living space, especially if the attic floor is not sufficiently insulated. Your air conditioning system will then increase its output to compensate for the difference in temperature which can result in high energy bills.
Attic “Rain” — Trapped moisture in the attic can result in condensation that exhibits symptoms of a leaking roof, except it happens even when there’s no actual rain.
Clumping Insulation — Contact with moisture can cause certain types of insulation to form clumps, which can negatively affect attic insulation. While insulation can be reapplied, addressing roof ventilation problems is the ideal long-term solution.