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Summerville Roofing: Article About Ventilating and Insulating Your Attic Space

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Constructing a roof is more than just throwing up shingles onto a roof deck and nailing them down. Builders have to plan ahead to make sure the Summerville roofing is sturdy, water-tight and energy efficient. Two of the most important factors for a well-built roof are insulation and ventilation.

Insulation is important to keep the heated or cooled air inside the climate controlled living spaces. Anytime air escapes, it wastes energy and money. Insulating the attic floor is important. It is also important that the roof have some form of insulation.

Roofs need ventilation in all climates: hot, warm and cold. In a cold climate, ventilation helps keep the roof cool to prevent melted ice and snow from damaging the roof. Hot climate roofs need ventilation to keep the sun-warmed air from continuing to heat up in the small attic space, forming moisture in the insulation and on the roof deck. Insufficient ventilation can also cause other problems in all climates including warping of the house frame, mold, mildew and water damage.

Your ventilation system needs to keep air moving through your attic or vent space. A huge difference in temperature between the roof surface and outside air can cause condensation. Keeping the outside air flowing through helps balance out the temperature difference.

There are many different types of ventilation. Some of them include attic fans, soffit vents, powered roof vents, static vents and ridge vents.

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The type you will need will depend on the design of your roof and the materials you use for the construction of the roof.

There are some conditions in which a vented attic is not possible. When your attic is air-conditioned and heated, you have vaulted ceilings, or your rafters are visible from the interior, you will need to vent the roof deck from the eaves to the ridge vent. Insulation plays a major role in this type of roof design. Foam, rigid and spray insulation can be used to make sure the area is not keeping in moisture or hot air, and that the roof doesn't melt snow causing ice dams.

There are several problems associated with only venting the roof deck. When moisture from snow or rain enters the ventilation area, it can cause the rafters and sheathing to rot. In areas where high winds are possible, the house can become pressurized which can result in structural damage. In areas that are prone to fires, embers entering the vents can cause a house fire.

Ventilation and insulation go hand in hand. Having the proper ventilation system often depends on the space being insulated well in other areas. Having both done correctly can keep you from having to pay for expensive repairs down the line.

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