Roof Vents and How to Choose
Choosing a roof ventilation system can be difficult sometimes when considering the many different options of roof vents are on the market today. Let’s first discuss the reason you need roof ventilation system and the benefits to each of them and then how to choose.
Why are Roof Vents Important?
With temperatures climbing up well over 105 degrees in the summer, the attics become infernos. On an average Texas summer day, your attic temperature can be up to 155 degrees or more! Even in well insulated homes this will have an effect in the ambient temperature of your home. What’s is our first response to walking into a warm house as soon as we get home? Crank the air conditioner down! This causes added stress to the air conditioning unit all because of the heat in your attic. By adding roof ventilation, you will be able to remove hot air allowing your air conditioning unit to be less stressed since it will need to run less frequently and directly save you on your electric bill too!
But… Why Do I Need a Roof Vent in the Winter?
This is a great question with a simple answer! We want to remove the heat and balance the cold temperatures to reduce the amount of moisture in the air. This will help to prevent rot and moisture damage to the roofing materials. Also, it will help prevent any ice damming from developing on the roof that would cause potential roof or interior damage.
So… What are the best options for Roof Ventilation?
Roof vents come in all shapes and styles to all do the same job such as ridge vent, box vents, turbines, power vents and solar vents. So how do you choose? Well first, you need to understand when and why you might use each of the options.
Box Vents and Turbines
The most common vents seen on new homes are box vents and turbines. Turbines are wind-powered and are effective at removing heat from the attic if the wind is blowing. Box vents are static vents and only allow heat to escape but do not actively pull the air out. Box vents, however, are often used in conjunction with turbines because the relatively low cost of the vents.
Ridge vent, like the box vent, is a static vent as well, but unlike the box vent ridge vent is optimally placed at the ridges of the roof where all the heat is accumulating. As air flows through vents in your soffit, the hot air is expelled through the ridge vent. This is a wonderful option for gable roof homes; that is a roof that is an A style (See Article Hip, Gable, Flat?). However, some hip roof may not have enough ridge to benefit from ridge ventilation. In this case, it is preferred to use a little power.
Power Vents are on top of the attic heat removal food chain! This is because they are powered with a low voltage electrical wire and use very little electricity, often costing as little as $2-3 per month but with less heat in the attic and less stress on the air conditioning unit, the hundreds of dollars of potential savings in costly repairs are advantageous. Most powered box vents include a thermostat switch that will allow the box vent to only operate when the temperature in the attic is 85 degrees or above. This style vent is preferred for every roof application over turbines and ridge vent and is only trumped by that of the great solar powered vent.
This is the Big Chief, the big Kahuna, the Big… well you get the picture. Solar vents are awesome! Why do we love them so much? Because for us at Baker Roofing, the best product is the product that functions the best and reduces the impact on our ecosystem. Solar vents will give you all the benefits of a powered vent while harnessing the power of the sun. This means that you are reducing the amount of heat in your attic which then decreases stress on your air conditioner and results in less used energy!! You will save every month on your electric bill; your air condition lasts longer with less stress and you reduce your impact on the environment. Now that is effective and sustainable roofing practices!
Installation and Costs of Roof Vents
Installation of roof vents vary depending on style of ventilation system. In most cases, switching from box vents or turbines to solar vents can be performed within 2 hours by an insured Baker Roofing professional. However, if ridge vents are the best ventilation system for the home then all box and turbine vents must be removed and patched with appropriate roofing materials. Additionally, ridge cap must also be replaced at time of installation which could make ridge vent installation costlier than a solar vent. Another cost to consider and vital to the ventilation system is proper soffit vents that will allow the cooler air to be drawn in and replace the expelled warmer air. If your home has inadequate soffit vents, that will be an added cost.
Time to Choose
Now that you are well informed with the importance of roof ventilation and have a basic understanding of each system, it’s time to choose and as with all exterior projects you are considering, from windows to skylights to roofing ventilation, Baker Roofing is always available to help you decide what option is best suited for your home and budget. Contact Baker Roofing & Construction for all your exterior needs.
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