About two weeks ago, the marketing and roof consultant team attended a seminar on attic ventilation giving us additional information and knowledge about the subject to share with our clients. Today, we’d like to take the opportunity to share with you the pros and cons of different exhaust and intake products that can be used to complete your roof ventilation system.

Why Roof Ventilation Matters

Lets cut to the chase. We discuss, educate and write about roof ventilation in abundance because nine out of ten roofs age prematurely due to poor roof ventilation. There are several reasons why your roof may need to be replaced or require substantial roof maintenance, but your ventilation system can be your greatest asset in cutting energy costs and improving the durability of your roof.

What Are Your Options?

Having a balanced roof ventilation system can be accomplished several different ways, but not all of the options are created equally. Here is a list comprised of the different products that may be used for attic exhaust and intake to help you obtain a balanced roof ventilation system.

Attic Exhaust

Whether you have an existing roof, or you’re participating in new home construction, can make a difference in which options you have available for attic exhaust. Nearly all new homes should be constructed with a ridge vent, although very few are, because of the ease for installation and ventilation benefits. Existing roofs may not always be able to install a ridge vent or it may not be the most cost effective solution. When in doubt, obtaining the advice of a roofing professional is recommended. See our list below for the pros and cons of the different types of attic exhaust products you can choose to use:

5 Turbines = 15 Roof Louvers = 42 Feet of Ridge Vent

Attic Intake

Our list of attic intake products doesn’t have a good, better, best system to help determine the best solution for ventilating your roof. Instead, the ideal system should allow continuous uniform airflow across the entire roof surface. However, bird blocks are the least effective, and most commonly found option for attic intake, because they are the most restrictive system for allowing airflow through. All of the other intake systems provide a continuous airflow system across the entire face of the product. It’s important to note that air follows the path of least resistance and should enter the attic at the lowest point to provide the most effective ventilation system possible. Therefore using an exhaust vents for intake is not recommended.

Completing The Ventilation System

In the end, it doesn’t matter what combination of exhaust and intake products you use so long as the intake area is equal to or exceeds the exhaust area. According to building codes, a balanced ventilation system means at least 50% of the required vent area must be intake and 50% exhaust. One type of exhaust and intake product should be selected and used rather than multiple types. When you have several types of products in use, the stronger product will pull from the other one creating a potential short-circuit in the ventilation system. These are found commonly in new construction developments as a result of cost cuts or lack of roofing knowledge.

Having the knowledge and understanding about roof ventilation will help you make an informed decision about the options you have for improving your home’s heating and cooling. There are quite a few different factors and numbers that come into play that will help you make your decision. Instead of boring you with all the details Roof Life of Oregon can provide you with your best solution through a free roof maintenance inspection. For more information on ways to improve your roof ventilation, and ways you could hinder it, please visit our roof ventilation section on our blog.

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