Keep Your Attic Cool And Carry On
No matter what season of the year it is, a cool attic is a friend to your roof. Why?
How do you make your attic cool? There are 2 main contributors to a cool attic – installing a lot of attic insulation and providing proper ventilation.
The best ventilation is a continuous ridge vent on your roof combined with lots of soffit vents. Soffit vents provide for intake air, while the ridge vent allows the warm air to escape (thus cooling your attic in the summertime). Having a cool attic in the summer can help reduce the cost of your air conditioning bills. The best brand of ridge vent is OmniRoll made by a company called Lomanco. It has external and internal baffles that keeps wind-driven rain and snow from entering the attic. It has a low profile and is covered by roofing shingles to blend well with the roof.
Now, let’s talk about wintertime.
Your attic should be as cold as the outside air. Have you ever wondered why some houses have lots of icicles while others don’t? The reason why houses attract icicles is because they don’t have adequate insulation or attic ventilation.
Another factor is a higher thermostat setting. By keeping the living space cooler, less heat will travel to the attic and less snow will melt (because hot air rises). The snow should be allowed to melt by the sun naturally. If it melts from the household heat, it may cause problems by running down the roof until it reaches the colder overhang. At that point, it will refreeze and form icicles that hang from the gutters. The ice continues to build up until there are large chunks of it actually sitting on your roof edge. This is called an ice dam. The ice dam creates a blockage for the snowmelt and a small pool of water forms that may back up under the shingles and enter the house.
A good barrier to prevent this type of moisture entry along the eaves is a 3’ wide strip of product called ice and water membrane. Ice and water membrane will not prevent icicles, but it will prevent the meltwater from an ice dam from entering your living space.
Have you ever noticed the snow on a vacant house or unheated garage? It stays on the roof until the sun melts it – these structures never have ice dams!
For questions and concerns about ice dams forming along your roof, contact Solid Rock Roofing!