Why Attic Vents are Important Even in the Winter Months
Updated: Oct 7, 2020
Have you noticed the vents on your roof and wondered if you’d be better off covering them to help keep your house warmer in the winter? Many people believe it will help insulate their home in the winter if they cover them but read on to learn why this is a bad idea.
There are several different types of vents that roofs and attics can have including soffit, turbine, rafter or box vents to name a few and they serve different purposes. These vents perform an important function year round and should never be covered. Your soffit vents, which will be located at the eaves (or edges) of your home will bring cool air in and push the warm air out through the roof or ridge vents. It’s important for your attic to have proper ventilation to prevent damage to your home.
Issues caused by covering these vents can include damage to your roof decking, popped shingles, wood rot and mold growth. In the winter, moisture will likely rise and if these vents are blocked it will accumulate in the attic leading to wood rot and/or mold growth which we all know can lead to many health issues. If the temperature in your attic is uneven, having hot and cold areas, this can lead to ice dams which are a build-up of ice at the eaves of your roof. These ice dams prevent water (from melting snow) from draining off your roof and then it can freeze beneath your shingles which can cause shingle damage. These ice dams can also cause your gutters to crack. These repairs can become costly so it’s best to ensure your attic is vented properly and find other ways to insulate, if needed.
You can tell your attic is ventilated properly by checking the temperature of the area at night. If it’s winter and it’s warmer in the attic than it is outside that’s a sign heat is escaping your home and your attic isn’t properly ventilated. You can also tell your attic is too warm by looking at your roof from outside right after it snows. For your own safety, always do this at ground level; never get on a roof when there is snow or possible ice. If the ridges (or peaks) of your home have less snow than the rest of the roof, which can lead to those ice dams we mentioned, it can be a sign your attic is to warm and not ventilating properly. There are also online calculators you can use to determine if you have enough ventilation for the size of your home.
If heat escaping your home is a concern, the proper way to resolve the issue is to improve the insulation in your attic. This can be done by adding fiberglass insulation if it doesn’t already have it or if it’s worn or damaged for some reason, using blown insulation or adding insulation boards. Just be sure not to cover your rafter vents as they can be easily overlooked.
If you are concerned about the condition of your roof due to any of these issues we’ve covered, from a recent hail storm, even a small one, or you are selling your home contact Allegiance Roofing for a FREE inspection today. You can also reach us by calling 719-470-3939, visiting us on Facebook or Instagram or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to serving you for your roofing needs.