Ventilate my roof? What does that mean? Why Does A Roof Need Ventilation?

Your roof protects your from the moisture and heat that is in the elements. You might think that roof venting would be the last thing that you would expect a roof to have. Besides, aren’t we trying to keep the elements out? Opening the roof to expose ourselves to the open air seems counterproductive.

Believe it or not, ventilation is one of the more important aspects of your roof’s performance. There is a great deal of moisture that accumulates in a home. Inside the building or home, Cooking, Showering, Cleaning and just breathing and perspiring as we humans are known to do all add to significant amounts of moisture. Natural climate, ambient temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity also effect how much moisture builds up. These moisture sources, like heat, rise and work their way into the top of your attic space. In the summer, the moisture in the attic becomes very hot and humid and as we all know… Mold spores thrive in this environment. Improper ventilation can cause this moisture to accumulate and cause great deterioration to the top of your home. Proper and well planned attic ventilation allows this moisture to escape.

Likewise, ventilation also helps to bring balance to the moisture that accumulates on the roof as well. Ceiling fans, vents and ridge vents all comprise part of the ventilation system and ensure that the home, attic and roof have ample air to release moisture. The roof ventilation systems consist of both intake and exhaust vents. These vents ensure the balance is regulated between the roof and the attic.

The current code for a balanced attic system follows the 1:300 rule.

If your home doesn’t have proper ventilation, you can experience a number of problems. First, moisture accumulates and may cause various parts of your roofing system to deteriorate. You may notice that the shingles become warped or loose and may slip off. If the water damage extends to the underlayment, you may see warping or buckling of the wood underneath the roof. This can lead to structural damage and may extend into the roof sheathing, the ridge beams, trusses or rafters. If these structures become damaged, they may fail to support the roof.

It is extremely important that your roof has ventilation according to the latest code specifications and that you ensure that the ventilation system is working properly. The best way to ensure that your ventilation system is installed properly is to have a professional roofing contractor do the work for you.