Everything You Need to Know About Roofing Ventilation

April 5, 2015
Roofing Ventilation

© Vladyslav Danilin / Dollar Photo Club

Your roof protects your home against heavy winds and torrential rains, making it one of your most important investments. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of worrying too much about how a roof looks and not enough about how well it is ventilated. Here is what you need to know about roofing ventilation to make an informed decision.

Elimination of Excess Moisture

Mold and other types of fungi thrive in moist environments. Without adequate ventilation, moisture builds up underneath the roof deck, increasing the risk for dry rot. Too much moisture also causes nails and other metal roofing materials to rust, weakening them and putting the integrity of your roof at risk. The right ventilation system allows excess moisture to escape from the roof, enhancing the integrity of the structure and reducing the risk of climate-related problems.

When condensation turns into liquid, the liquid can drip into attic insulation, making it less effective. If enough water soaks through the insulation, you might even see water damage on the ceiling below your attic. If the ceiling has water damage, mild might grow in the damp areas, compromising the air quality in your home.

Venting of Excess Heat

During the summer, hot air gets trapped underneath the roof deck, increasing the temperature in your attic. If your attic does not have an air conditioner, the extra heat can affect the temperature on other floors of your home. The higher the temperature in your home, the harder your air conditioner has to work to keep your family cool.

Too much heat also warps roofing shingles and damages other roofing materials. If you have an efficient ventilation system in place, you don’t have to worry about excess heat driving up your energy costs or ruining your shingles.

Extended Roof Life

Adequate ventilation has a definite impact on the life of a roof, whether you live in a hot climate or a cold one. In warm areas, a good ventilation system allows excess heat to escape from attics, reducing cooling costs and making your home more comfortable. As a result, your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard to cool your home.

In cold areas, adequate ventilation prevents ice dams from forming on your roof. Roofing ventilation also releases excess heat that might cause snow to melt and then re-freeze on days when the temperatures fall below freezing. If you do not have an efficient ventilation system, the snow on your roof might keep melting and re-freezing as the temperature changes. When snow melts, a pool of water can form under the shingles of your roof, damaging the roof deck. If the problem is not fixed immediately, the water can even damage your interior walls, ruin the pain job on the exterior of your home, and seep into your ceilings.

Intake and Exhaust Vents

Exhaust vents allow air and moisture to escape from your home, but you also need intake vents in your roofing system. Intake vents replace the air that exits your home via the exhaust vents. Because the overhang of your roof provides a lot of shade, the best place for an intake vent is on the soffit of the roof. Putting an intake vent in this area will help you replace warm air with cooler air, keeping your home comfortable all summer long.

Signs of Poor Ventilation

If you don’t have an effective ventilation system in place, you might have several problems with your roof. These problems include mold growth, the presence of excess frost in the winter, water dripping from roofing materials even when there is no leak, and an excessive amount of hot air in the attic during the summer.

If you notice any of these problems, contact an experienced roofing professional immediately. Without adequate ventilation, you are spending more money than necessary on your heating and cooling costs.

Code Compliance

Many areas have building codes that specifically address roofing ventilation systems. These codes are in place to ensure the integrity of commercial and residential structures. If you plan to build a new home or renovate an existing home, work with a roofing professional who knows how to install ventilation systems that improve energy efficiency and comply with all local and regional requirements.

Conclusion

Roofing ventilation can make a big difference to your house infrastructure in the long term.  It can save you money by cutting down on heating costs and moisture. It can also prevent you from having to spend more money in the future along the way of repairs.  When roofing ventilation is given proper attention, you will have less to think about in regards to your roof in the years to come.

Have the best professional roofing company in Oklahoma install your roof’s ventilation system. Contact us now.

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