Let It Breathe: The Importance of Roofing Ventilation

Roofing Ventilation

Shingle roof with woven valley
Turbine vent installed on a roof

Can your roof breathe properly? It may sound like a silly question, but the answer is critical to the health and long-term durability of your home. Whether you live in a hot and steamy climate or you prefer the colder weather of the northern latitudes, there are good reasons for making sure that your home has the proper roof ventilation. To help you better understand why these vents are so important and how to determine whether your home can adequately breathe, let's take a look at everything you need to know about roofing vents.

The Importance of Proper Airflow

When it comes to protecting your roof, and the home below it, it's all about controlling temperature and moisture. During hot weather, the sun beats down on your roof and transfers an extraordinary amount of solar energy, causing the air below to become extremely hot. This eventually works its way into your home, significantly increasing the need for cooling and creating a less pleasant living space. It also places a lot of stress on your roofing materials. In cold weather, the opposite problem occurs. Warm, heated air from inside your home transfers to the roof, melting snow and creating a risk of ice dams. This clash of warm air with a cold roof also causes moisture buildup, potentially posing a risk of mold growth and even water damage.

Let Your Roof Vent

The solution to both of these issues is simple: Increase the airflow around your roof deck and attic with proper venting. By creating a steady flow of air, you can ensure that your roof stays cool year-round. This means less stress on your roofing materials, less cooling costs during the warmer months, and less risk of ice dams and moisture buildup. In fact, proper airflow is so important that inadequate venting may even void any warranties offered by your roof's shingle manufacturer. So, how do you know whether your roof is vented correctly?

How Roofing Vents Work

At its most basic, venting a roof requires vents for air intake and exhaust. There are a number of options to choose from in each case, with intake vents including:

  • Soffit vents
  • Fascia vents
  • Dormer vents

There are even more options for exhausting air, such as:

  • Ridge vents
  • Gable vents
  • Turbine vents
  • Off-ridge vents
  • Powered attic vents

The Right Amount of Ventilation

Unfortunately, ensuring proper airflow from soffit to ridge isn't quite as simple as it sounds. The air needs to circulate smoothly and consistently to achieve the desired effect, and poorly placed vents can disrupt this airflow or even stop it altogether. Finding the right amount of ventilation is also important as both too much and too little airflow can potentially cause problems. Though the typical standard is the 1/150 rule, meaning that one square foot of free vent area is required for every 150 square feet of attic space, it's best to check with your local municipality for specific building codes.

As you can see, outfitting your roof with proper roofing vents is an important but complex task. If done correctly, it can help to lower your cooling costs and extend the life of your roofing materials for years to come. If you suspect that your roof may not have the venting it needs, or if you'd simply like an expert opinion, contact us today to begin the Roofr process. You'll be glad you did!

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GAF Timberline VS BP Mystique asphalt shingle comparison

Shingle Comparison chart for your reference, compare GAF Timberline to BP Mystique shingles.

GAF Timberline shingles and BP Mystique shingles are an architectural fiberglass asphalt shingle used all across North America on residential homes. It is always recommended that you have GAF Timberline shingles installed by a GAF certified roofer. BP has similar certification programs for their approved roofing contractors.

 

GAF Timberline 

BP Mystique

Visual Style Timberline_Ultra_HD_Charcoal.jpg mystique-east-2-tone-black-su164632.png
Warranty 50 year limited lifetime warranty/10 years non-prorated  50 year limited lifetime warranty/15 years non-prorated
Wind Rating 110 mph wind warranty  110 mph wind warranty
 Weight 210 lbs / 100sqft 237 lbs / 100sqft
Actual Lifetime 30-35 years  25-30 years
Shingles/Bundle
19   19
 Bundles/Pallet 36 36
Colours
  • Timberline Ultra HD - BarkwoodTimberline Ultra HD - Barkwood
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Biscayne BlueTimberline Ultra HD - Biscayne Blue
  • Timberline Ultra HD - CharcoalTimberline Ultra HD - Charcoal
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Fox Hollow GrayTimberline Ultra HD - Fox Hollow Gray
  • Timberline Ultra HD - HickoryTimberline Ultra HD - Hickory
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Hunter GreenTimberline Ultra HD - Hunter Green
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Patriot RedTimberline Ultra HD - Patriot Red
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Pewter GrayTimberline Ultra HD - Pewter Gray
  • Timberline Ultra HD - ShakewoodTimberline Ultra HD - Shakewood
  • Timberline Ultra HD - SlateTimberline Ultra HD - Slate
  • Timberline Ultra HD - Weathered WoodTimberline Ultra HD - Weathered Wood

 

Improper installation of asphalt shingles can cause leaks and void your manufacturer warranty.

Contact Roofr to schedule a visit from one of our vetted professional roofers.

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The Importance of Proper Roof Ventilation

2 min read

A properly ventilated roof can save you a ton of money in the long run. 

One of the most important components of a great roofing system is ventilation, the longevity of your roof greatly depends on it. A few extra dollars spent on adequate ventilation will save you a ton of money in the long run.

What does Ventilation do and Why is it Important?

Ice damning is a major cause of leaks during winter months. Ice damning occurs when your attic is not properly ventilated. Warm air from your home travels upwards and remains in your attic, melting the snow unevenly, which then freezes again when it reaches your eaves. This ice buildup will not only cause condensation and mould, but will deteriorate the shingles at a rapid rate and rot the roof deck.

During the summer, proper ventilation will allow for continuous outside airflow throughout the attic, keeping the inside of your home cooler, thusly saving you a large amount on your air-conditioning bill.

Things to Remember When Ventilating your Roof!

  • Your intake ventilation (soffits) must not be blocked by any insulation.
  • Vents must always be staggered along the ridge of the roof. Placing vents adjacent to one another will cause cross ventilation (air entering one vent and leaving directly out another).
  • Only one style of vent can be used in the same attic space. The use of different vents types will cause an imbalance in air flow and leave portions of the roof unventilated.

Ask your Contractor.

When replacing your roof, be sure to ask your contractor the following questions regarding ventilation:

  • Do I have an adequate amount of exhaust vents in relation to my attic space and intake vents?
  • Is there more than 1 type of exhaust vent being used on the roof?
  • Are my old vents being used?
  • Is there potential for cross ventilation to occur?
  • Are my intake vents (soffits) blocked by any insulation? (This can be checked by looking inside the attic space).
  • Do I have an adequate amount of intake ventilation?

All in all, choosing the right roofing contractor in your area will eliminate any future ventilation risks and save you a ton of money in the long run.

Hope this helps!!

Richard Nelson

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