RoofingWhy Most Central MA Roofers Mess Up Attic Ventilation

June 4, 2020
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Proper Attic Ventilation Is A Delicate Balancing Act Between Intake & Exhaust Ventilation.

Unfortunately, Many Roofers Won’t Take The Time To Assess Determine Your Home’s Specific Needs.

BY JEFF BROOKS, FOUNDER

When it comes to roof replacement in Central MA, attic ventilation typically gets the short end of the stick. Most roofers either do it wrong… or at all.

That’s bad. Really bad. Attic ventilation is one of the most important components of roof replacement. If you have a poorly vented attic, your home and wallet are in for a world of hurt. Here are just a few problems you’ll face…

  • Moisture buildup that leads to rot and mold
  • Overheated shingles that can prematurely decompose
  • Sky-high energy bills
  • Dangerous ice dams

To name a few.

The million-dollar question: Why do so many roofers get attic ventilation so wrong?

To answer that, let’s first do a crash-course in what it takes to get attic ventilation right.

Proper Attic Ventilation In Central MA Requires Equilibrium

Appropriate attic ventilation requires the correct ratio of intake ventilation to exhaust ventilation. The U.S. Federal Housing Administration suggests one square foot attic ventilation for every 150 square feet of your attic. Each square foot must have the proper ratio of intake and exhaust for acceptable airflow.

Here’s the problem: No two attics are the same. Your attic is different from your neighbor’s attic, which is different from their neighbor’s attic, and so on. As such, the perfect ventilation system for your neighbor’s home could be utterly wrong for your home.

Unfortunately, Central MA roofers who do address attic ventilation tend to take a “one-size-fits-all” approach. They assume if it’s good for the goose (your neighbor’s attic), it must be good for the gander (your attic).

Square pegs, meet round holes.

Attic Mold
Attic Mold

When Attic Ventilation Goes Wrong… And Why

So what gives? Why do roofing companies mess up attic ventilation? Do they not know any better?

In the case of inexperienced roofers, the answer is probably. They may think “the more, the better” and try to jam as much ventilation as possible in your attic… with zero regard for proper intake-exhaust ratios. This can lead to a few problems:

  1. If there is more exhaust than intake, negative air space is created. This causes your attic to essentially suck up the conditioned air in your home through various openings (vent openings, recessed light fixtures, and so on). As a result, your air conditioner has to work overtime to compensate.
  2. If the roofer installs two exhaust systems (I’ve seen it happen!), the stronger system will pull air from the weaker one. This can cause some spots in your attic to be unventilated.

But the #1 reason roofers get attic ventilation wrong? Substandard inspection processes. The roofers who do inspections typically “eyeball” the attic and guesstimate the solution. It would be like an auto mechanic determining your car’s engine trouble without looking under the hood. Or your doctor diagnosing you over the phone. There’s a 99.99% chance of them getting it WRONG.

How To Guarantee Correct Attic Ventilation In Central MA

How do you know if a Central MA roofer will handle your attic ventilation right?

Simple. Ask them the following three questions:

  • Do you follow the U.S. Federal Housing Administration’s recommendation of one square foot of attic ventilation for every 150 square feet of attic?
  • What is your plan to ensure proper intake-exhaust equilibrium?
  • Do you intend to use more than one type of exhaust ventilation? (The response you want is “no.”)

If you don’t want to interrogate a roofer, you could contact us instead. We perform a Deep Ventilation Analysis on every roof replacement. We’ve even created an in-depth checklist to ensure we get your attic’s ventilation perfect…

Here’s a brief explanation of how this checklist breaks down:

Section 1: Assessing your attic’s current conditions and ventilation system

Section 2: Determining of the amount of ventilation your attic needs

Section 3: Determining of which kind of system your attic needs to achieve the appropriate ventilation

Section 4: Your confirmation of how you want to proceed based on our analysis

Do other roofers in Central MA have this type of detailed ventilation analysis? I don’t know. Judging by how often I see attic ventilation done wrong in people’s homes, I’d wager the answer is a resounding no.

Bottom line: If you want attic ventilation done right on your roof replacement, get in touch. We’re unrepentant remodeling nerds who genuinely love the science behind roof replacement. We would be honored to analyze your attic, crunch the numbers, and determine the perfect ventilation system for YOUR specific needs.

Want to know more about our roofing services? Explore the following links…

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2 Shaker Road Suite D203, Shirley, MA 01464

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