- By Richard Turner
- In Roofing
- Tags rj turner roofing, roof repair, roof replacement, roof ventilation, roofing, winter weather
With winter in full swing, you have additional things to consider when it comes to caring for your roof. A priority that might slip through the cracks: a proper ventilation system. The winter months can actually be significant in contributing to long term roof damage, with the possibility of snowy weather. While we all might enjoy building snowmen or sledding, no one enjoys unnecessary roof damage. Use the best roof ventilation methods to ensure roof longevity.
Without proper ventilation system in place, there are many problems that can arise during winter. In colder weather, warm air from your home can become trapped in your attic space. All this additional rising heat can problematic in snowy weather, with the conflicting temperatures.
The number one problem for roofs during winter: ice dams. For more information about ice dams and how to prevent them, take a look at how to defrost your roof. The trapped heat from your attic causes snow to melt and run off your roof. However, once the melted snow reaches the end of your roof, it becomes cold once more and can refreeze near your gutters. This causes ice dams to form, and additional water build-up will spread right under your roof.
Sounds problematic, right? To ensure this doesn’t happen, there are a few best roof ventilation methods that will allow you to appreciate the snowy weather instead of worry all winter long.
The Best Methods for Roof Ventilation
First, Identify Your Roof Structure
In order to know what kind of attic vent is best for your home, first, you have to check and see what type of roof you have. Certain types of ventilation systems work better with various styles of roofs. Step outside and take a look at what your roof structure looks like. If you’re still unsure, read about what type of roof structure you have for some helpful tips.
Next, Decide What Ventilation System Works
Now, you can now determine what kind of ventilation system works best with your roof. There are two common ways you can ventilate your attic: intake and exhaust ventilation. You might be wondering, what’s the difference between the two systems?
An intake system generally requires soffit vents installed along the outside of your house to regulate air from the outside. An exhaust vent means any trapped air escapes your attic floor from either a power fan or ridge vent. It’s best to have the same unit throughout your home, to simplify the installation process.
If you have a roof with a more angular slope, like a hip or mansard roof, using something like a power fan will help circulate enough trapped heat from your roof structure. You just need to decide how you want the fan to be powered: through electrical wiring or solar power.
For a roof with more ridges and less steep edges, like a gable or a dormer roof, a ridge vent is ideal. For a gable roof, vents can handle the more complex ridges and still remove trapped air.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to your roof, ventilating your attic space is the only way to protect it year around. Without things like intake vents and exhaust fans, your attic space will be filled with trapped warm air. Ultimately, this build-up of moisture can cause water vapor to cling to the sides of your attic, which leads to all the additional problems your roof could face during winter. Making sure you have proper attic ventilation and insulation is the only way to prevent problems like ice dams from forming in the wintertime and keep your roof in top condition.