Don't Let Poor Attic Ventilation Damage Your Roof

Posted on: 17 August 2015

When the average homeowner thinks about taking care of their roof, they focus on the exterior. Inspecting the roof's underlayment and shingles are often two places where the maintenance and inspection process begins. However, effective roof care should also include the interior spaces of your home, more specifically, your attic. Poor ventilation in an attic can produce a significant amount of damage to a roof. And knowing how to avoid this issue is critical.

The Problem with Poor Ventilation

A significant problem that can arise when you have poor ventilation in your attic is warping or cracking of your roof materials. A poorly ventilated attic can suddenly increase the temperature of your roof. As the roof's temperature goes up and down, this leads to an ongoing process of constriction and expansion.

When shingles and other roofing materials constrict and expand, this manipulates their shape, leading to warping and cracking. These two issues don't just reduce curb appeal, but they can also serve as a perfect entry point for excess moisture. Excessive moisture that seeps into your roof can be troublesome because it can cause complete roof failure, interior water leaks and an increase in the risk of mold or mildew growth.

Signs of Poor Ventilation

It's easy to inspect your attic for poor ventilation in both the winter and summer months. During the winter, frequently check the eaves of your roof. If you often notice a buildup of ice, this is a problem. Warm air that's trapped in the attic will cause snow to melt rapidly. As it melts, the water gets transformed into ice that builds up around your eaves.

During the summer, touch your hand to a ceiling that is just below your attic. Ideally, the ceiling should feel similar to the temperature of the room. If the ceiling is hot or very warm, this generally means that there is hot air being trapped in your attic and that is not properly being cycled out.

Improving Attic Ventilation

When it comes to improving ventilation in your attic, the first thing you need to do is ensure you have a sufficient number of intake and exhaust ventilation vents. The Federal Housing Administration recommends that every home have at least one square foot of ventilation in their attic for every 150 square feet of space.

However, it's important to understand that this number is only a minimum. For some homeowners, a more aggressive amount of ventilation might be a better solution. If you have followed this guideline and you're still having problems, it might be time to add more vents.

Don't let poor ventilation wreak havoc on your roof. Make sure you are making proper attic ventilation a priority in your home and contact roof repair specialists, like those at Allen Roofing & Construction Inc, for more information and to keep up on maintenance and inspection.