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Proper Attic Ventilation Preserves the Roof of Your DeLand home

Posted on: August 24, 2014

Tried-and-true methods of attic ventilation have helped DeLand homeowners ensure an energy-efficient home. But what happens to homeowners who aren’t savvy about attic ventilation or buy a home without sufficient ventilation? Most homeowners don’t know that proper attic ventilation preserves the roof of your Deland home.  You’ll soon find out whether your home’s ventilation is up to snuff because you’ll notice humidity levels increase, energy bills climb or mold problems start. Or, you can be proactive, and check the attic’s ventilation and make the necessary retrofits.

Proper Attic Ventilation Preserves the Roof of Your DeLand home

Detrimental effects of poor attic ventilation

In DeLand’s climate, high attic temperatures are commonplace. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) reports that the average attic in this region can soar as high as 150 degrees during the hot summer months. The effects of this heat are anything but desirable.

Poor home comfort

When attic temperatures soar, it can affect the temperature in the home’s living spaces. You see, the heat passes through the attic and into the home, causing temperatures to rise. As a result, the air conditioner must run longer and work harder to compensate for the increase in temperature. To maintain a cool home, the A/C must run near continuously, working against the heat. That’s not the only negative outcome, however.

High energy costs

As your air conditioner chugs along, working to overcome the heat, it quietly eats away at your energy budget. As energy consumption rises, so do your electricity bills.

Wear and tear

If your air conditioner runs even 20 percent more during the summer months to combat heat buildup in the attic, that’s 20 percent less service life you’ll get out of the system on the back end. That means your investment in the A/C is lowered, the system will break down sooner, and you’ll have to replace the system with a new A/C before you would have had to if the air conditioner’s cooling load was decreased.

Building damage

Another negative outcome of poor attic ventilation, high temperatures wreak all kinds of havoc in the attic. Trapped humidity leads to mold growth in the attic, which can eat away at the structure and cause indoor air quality issues. On the roof, shingles begin to whither under the impact of the intense heat, as well as the sheathing.

Ventilation strategies

Roofing experts like the FHA recommend one square foot of ventilation for every 300 square feet of attic space. However, studies show that specific ventilation strategies go far in terms of ensuring sufficient airflow:

Venting

The University of Florida studied attic ventilation, and its findings prove that a balanced attic ventilation system is ideal. For continuous and sufficient air movement, DeLand homeowners should consider using ridge vents at the top of the roof, to allow air to exhaust from the space, while soffit vents on the lower portions of the roof ensure air intake. The unique soffit and ridge vent positioning allows an influx of outside air—which is warmer than air in the attic—to push the attic’s air mass up, and then out of the vents at the top of the space.

The dynamics of this kind of system prove beneficial for hot, humid climates, where it’s common for attic temperatures to become dangerously high and where trapped humidity is detrimental to the home. The system allows hot air to be purged from the attic, helping the temperature and humidity levels of the air in the attic to consistently remain lower than without balanced ventilation. Controlling the environment in the attic in this way prevents condensation from contributing to mold growth and mildew on both the roof structure and the insulation.

Turbines

It’s possible to drive ventilation even further by installing turbines in the attic. The device is powered by outdoor conditions, not electricity, so there’s no additional energy consumption to use it. As heat rises in the attic, the turbine simply assists in pushing the hot air up, and then out of the ridge vents.

Solar fans

Another assisted device, solar fans are powered by solar energy. A thermostat reads the temperature of the attic, and then signals the fan to cycle on only when temperatures climb to a pre-determined point, and when ventilation needs an assist.

For the best advice for your DeLand home’s attic ventilation, contact an expert at Jacob Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ve been serving the DeLand community and surrounding areas since 1921 with superior customer service and air conditioning solutions. Just give us a call today!