Exceptionally effective Turbine vents do an excellent job of transporting warm air out of a property’s attic sections when there is little wind. When the wind blows, however, these vents create a forceful suction of warm air, which draws it up through the vent as effectively as any powered option.
What keeps water out of turbine vents?
When turbines are properly fitted with a balanced intake and exhaust system, no weather penetration should occur. To deflect water, the turbine comprises twenty-one (21) air-foil curved vanes with rolled edges. The curled edges are intended to direct water down the vanes rather than into the attic.
I’m not sure how many turbine vents I’ll need.
You’ll have to pick what kind of roof vents to install to ensure proper ventilation in your attic while deciding on the details of a new roof for your home. But why do you need roof vents in the first place? And how many do you really need for a single roof? What kind of roof vents are available, and which ones would be ideal for your home? Here are the answers to some of the most often asked questions so you can choose the best roof vents for your needs:
Why would a new roof need vents in the first place?
The most well-known benefit of a roof vent is that it keeps your attic cooler throughout the summer. If you’ve ever crawled up into your attic on a hot day (especially in August in Oklahoma), you know how important it is to have as many roof vents as possible. Furthermore, lowering the temperature in your attic and boosting air movement helps avoid damage, mold, decay, and a variety of other problems that an unventilated roof can cause.
However, adding vents isn’t only about controlling attic temperature; here are a few more reasons why your roof needs sufficient ventilation to protect its shingles and roof:
- Bills are lower. Roof vents will help you save money on your energy expenses. Your heating and cooling elements will not have to work as hard for as long if you have proper air circulation.
- Reduce the amount of damage. Roof vents keep your shingles from being damaged. You are allowing the attic to remain at a high temperature without sufficient roof ventilation. This might cause your shingles to be damaged and cracked much before they should.
- Allow yourself to go with the flow. Roof vents provide for appropriate air flow, which helps to decrease moisture buildup in the attic. Unwanted moisture may wreak havoc on practically any part of your roof. Mold can also grow in attics with inadequate ventilation because moisture is not removed.
How many roof vents is enough?
Okay, you understand why you require them. But how many roof vents does a typical home require? If your property has a vapor barrier on the roof, homeowners require one square foot of roof vent for every 300 square feet of ceiling space, or 1:300. If not, one square foot of roof vent should be installed for every 150 square feet, or 1:150. In addition, your roof vents should be appropriately divided, with half dedicated to air intake and the other half to air exhaust. That means an 8-square-foot roof vent is required for a 2,400-square-foot home with a moisture barrier roof.
Of course, every house in every environment is unique, so we can examine your specific requirements and determine how many you require.
What kind of roof vents are there? Which kind do I need?
Every roof, like every home, requires a slightly different strategy when it comes to roof vents. Here’s a rundown of the various types of vents we recommend and install in our homes:
This is the traditional roof vent you’ve seen on houses your entire life. These guys are known as whirlybirds because they twirl in the wind. Wind power drives them, which pulls hot air and moisture up and out of your attic.
These creatures have fans that are powered by motors to remove the heat and moisture. Even better, some come with thermostats and humidistats that monitor the temperature and humidity levels in your attic and turn on when they become too high.
This vent makes use of natural convection by simply making a hole through which rising hot air and moisture may escape. Because no engine or wind power is used, homeowners frequently need to install more vents than the normal amount.
Ridge vents are located on the horizontal ridge of the roof, where they are less conspicuous than other roof vents, as the name implies. Many roofers believe that this is the most energy-efficient roofing system available.
Cupola vents are so attractive that many individuals opt to use them as simple ornaments on their roofs, implying that they aren’t even useful. Cupola vents, on the other hand, can be useful, and they’re frequently used in conjunction with other vents to give the necessary ventilation.
Despite the fact that they are not on the roof, these vents provide excellent ventilation to your attic. Soffit vents, which are located along the soffits of the home, let a lot of air into the attic. However, because they are located at the roof’s lowest point, they must be combined with another form of vent to allow rising hot air to escape.
On a roof, where do you put whirlybirds?
Whirlybirds are usually installed at the highest ridge line at the very top of a roof. Because hot air and moisture naturally ascend and gather at the highest point of a roof, where it may escape through the whirlybirds and into the environment, this arrangement allows whirlybirds to perform most efficiently.
Is it necessary to cover turbine roof vents during the winter?
During the winter, roof ventilation helps to maintain a consistent temperature. Closing your vents makes the attic space too warm and dry, which is ideal for mold and vermin to thrive. Keep your roof vents open to keep the temperature even on your roof and avoid ice dams, which form when water backs up behind your shingles and freezes, causing damage to your roofing components and structure, as well as your gutters.
Snow and ice on the roof melt quickly when the attic becomes too warm owing to closed vents. This allows water to flow freely between the shingles and into the gutters. The refreezing problem is caused by uneven roof temperatures produced by blocked vents.
Is it better to use a ridge vent or a turbine?
Roof vents keep your home cool, avoid moisture concerns, and promote healthy airflow in general: Without them, your roof just won’t function properly. So, let’s compare and contrast the ridge vent and the turbine vent, two of the most popular types.
A ridge vent is positioned at the ridges where your roof peaks and runs along the top of those ridges, as the name implies. The vent is contoured around the ridge and covered in matching siding or tile, making it almost unnoticeable and resembling a running cap or extra roof trim.
Ridge vents have a number of advantages. Because the entire ridge functions as a vent instead of just one or two points across the roof, they can deliver a high volume of airflow per square foot when designed appropriately.
When comparing the ridge vent vs. turbine vent, keep in mind that ridge vents, like turbine vents, require precise, competent installation to function effectively. Weather guards and wind baffles must be employed to prevent moisture from leaking back into the ridge and to provide the requisite low-pressure area for hot air to exit. To be effective, the ridge must run the length of the roof, and not all rooftops have enough ridges for this strategy to function. Even full ridge vents may not be sufficient for particularly steep hip roofs.
Turbine vents like miniature wind turbines that have been put on your roof. When the wind blows across your roof, the turbines spin and pull air up into your attic. There is no need for an additional source of power, and turbines come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Depending on the size of the roof, two or three of these turbines are typically used.
Wind turbines, of course, are dependent on the wind. These vents can move more air than other types of vents when the wind blows regularly, but they are ineffective when the air is quiet. Turbine vents are also less expensive to install than ridge vents because the installation area is substantially smaller.
When considering turbine vent alternatives, keep in mind that they are highly visible: ridge vents are a good option if you want your vents to have a low profile. Lubrication and high-quality materials are also vital; poor-quality turbines may rust or dry out, causing unpleasant squeaks and groans, depending on the temperature.
While ridge vents are preferred for their understated appearance and functionality, turbine vents may be preferable in hot or humid conditions where more dynamic airflow is required. If you’re unsure, visit a roofing professional who can assess your home’s needs and create a venting strategy for you. A combination of both vents may be the best option in some cases.
Is it true that turbine vents are superior to box vents?
On the market, there are a variety of vent systems to choose from. Each roof has its own set of requirements, and in many cases, the optimum option is a mix of several types.
Box vents, also known as “low profile vents” or “flat vents,” are static vents that are fitted above a hole cut into the roof and have no moving parts. Box vents, which are most efficient when put close to the roof crest, create an outlet for rising hot air and moisture to leave the attic. To generate enough airflow, multiple vents on the same roof are frequently required.
Wind turbines are wind-powered vents with moving elements. Wind turbine vents can move more air than box vents when the wind is blowing, but only when the wind is blowing. Wind causes the spinning action, which takes hot air and moisture from the attic. Wind turbine vents come in a variety of quality levels, however we recommend higher-grade wind turbines.
Large motor-driven fans move hot air and moisture out of the attic and roofing system via power attic vents (PAVs). PAVs are available in a variety of colors, and some contain thermostats that activate the fan when the attic temperature reaches a set level. These vents are made to be extremely quiet and provide steady airflow.
What are the best roof vents?
Now that we’ve discussed the importance of roof venting as well as the variations between intake and exhaust style vents, let’s take a look at the most often utilized roof venting systems.
Type Of Roofing Exhaust Vents
Before making a final selection on which roof vent to employ as an exhaust for your property, please check with an experienced roofing specialist.
When adding roof vents, most people replace their roof, so getting quotations from a reputable roofing contractor is essential.
We include this warning because it’s impossible to explain all of the benefits and drawbacks of each choice without first understanding the particular configuration of your current roof and the design of your home.
Ridge Vents (Most Common Exhaust)
The most frequent type of exhaust vent is the ridge vent. If you’re getting a roof quote from a Massachusetts contractor, there’s a good possibility that this type of vent will be included. If a ridge vent isn’t indicated, make sure to inquire about the exhaust vent the contractor plans to install and why it’s the best fit for your specific roofing project.
A ridge vent is located at the apex of your roof and runs the length of your roof line. Ridge vents are strategically placed at the roof’s highest point to allow the hottest air to leave the attic region. They also have the surface area needed to release huge amounts of hot air because they run the length of the roof line.
Important: When combined with intake vents located at the bottom of your roof line (such as a soffit vent), a ridge vent provides the best opportunity for vertical ventilation.
Gravity and the natural movement of cool and heated air are used in vertical ventilation. The cold air enters from the bottom and departs from the top. Horizontal or cross-venting, which we will describe later, are considerably inferior to this method.
Almost every roofing company is well-versed in ridge vent installation. Cutting a 2 inch wide gap along the entire peak of the roof using a saw is part of the installation process. The flexible ridge vent is twisted and fastened over the top once the hole is cut.
A ridge cap shingle is curved over the vent and fastened on after the ridge vent is nailed over the newly cut gap at the ridge line. This unique shingle is more durable and bendable than standard asphalt shingles, plus it comes in a variety of colors to complement your new roof perfectly!
Most current ridge vents are so sturdy that you can stand on them, such as GAF’s Cobra Snow Country ridge vent. Their strength gives additional protection against snow accumulation in the Northeast and other snowy parts of the country. Snow and ice accumulation that might otherwise block the exhaust of other style vents are often prevented by the way the ventilation holes are constructed into the product.
A ridge vent’s design, location on the roof line, surface area covered, cost, and commonality are just a few of the many reasons why this is one of the most popular exhaust vents available, and one that we strongly recommend if it matches your home’s construction.
Off Ridge Vents
Though they have the same name, an off-ridge vent and a ridge vent are only similar in that they both sit close to the crest of your roof. In fact, “off ridge vents” resemble box vents far more than ridge vents!
When compared to other, more effective exhaust roofing vents, off ridge vents are not a very popular form of vent and are not one we recommend. Because they are smaller and do not sit as high on the roof, off ridge vents are not as effective as full ridge vents. Their size prevents them from releasing a huge volume of hot air, and their placement prevents them from venting the ultimate hottest air, as a ridge vent may.
The most common off-ridge vents on the market are 4 feet long. Typically composed of galvanized steel, installation entails cutting a hole in the roof approximately one foot below the ridge line the size of the vent itself.
When the actual ridge line of the roof is modest, off ridge vents are useful. Complex roofs and homes without a single long, continuous ridge line for a standard ridge vent to run across can cause this. Adding an off-ridge vent or two to these roofs can help offer additional ventilation in locations where it is needed.
This is a sort of vent to add in your ventilation system if your home has a lot of peaks, valleys, and dormers. However, this is not always the case, so make sure you chat with a reputable roofer before calling.
Box Vents (aka Louver Vents)
Off-ridge vents are comparable to box vents, but box vents are a much more common venting method.
The first stage in installation is to make a hole in the roof for the vent to sit over, which is comparable to an off-ridge vent. Another resemblance is that box vents are typically built in groups across the roof to provide additional ventilation. One or two box vents are insufficient to adequately ventilate your entire roof!
Box vents have a more square form than its off-ridge counterparts, hence the name. There are many different sizes to choose from depending on what you need for your space. The most commonly available box vent size is 18 inches by 18 inches.
Box vents are one of the two most common exhaust vents on a modern roof, along with ridge vents. When opposed to a ridge vent, their modest size is primarily a disadvantage, but they do offer some versatility. Box vents can be strategically placed in smaller sections that need air ventilation but can’t use a ridge vent because they don’t have to span the length of the roof.
Using a box vent, like off-ridge vents, makes sense for more intricate roof lines with multiple parts. A ridge vent, on the other hand, is usually significantly more effective if you have a larger roof line. Off-ridge vents, on the other hand, are particularly frequent on hipped roofs, and if you have a hip roof, these are an excellent option.
Hard-Wired Powered Attic Vents
Powered attic vents, also known as driven attic ventilators or attic power vents, are electric-powered fans that assist in the removal of stale air from attics. They function similarly to a box fan in a window on a hot summer day. They can successfully remove hot air, albeit at the penalty of increased utility costs.
Overall, one of the most important reasons for attic ventilation is to maintain a consistent temperature in your attic relative to the rest of your house. The room may be a little warmer in the summer and a little colder in the winter, but we want to minimize excessive temperature swings from season to season. This is vital to remember when talking about powered attic vents since their power can be either damaging to a ventilation strategy or insufficient to make a difference…
“Vent fans have the ability to reduce measured peak summer attic air temperatures by nearly 20 degrees farenheit,” according to Danny Parker and John Sherwin of the Florida Solar Energy Center. With well-insulated attics, however, the influence during the cooling season is rather minor.”
Another factor highlighted in Parker and Sherwin’s abstract is that the research was conducted in an area with a lot of air conditioning. This means that the powered vents may be sucking colder air up through the home’s main levels and out of the attic, raising energy expenditures and making the air conditioner work harder. If you wouldn’t put a box fan in a window while there’s air conditioning in the room, it’s unlikely that you’d utilize a powered attic vent if you’re cooling the entire house with air conditioning.
Finally, Parker and Sherwin point out that the existing residences in the study did not have exhaust ventilation, such as a ridge vent, when they were built. This is an important topic since adding any exhaust to a system that doesn’t have one, whether driven or not, is advantageous.
Weaker-powered vent devices can be just as harmful to your home’s ventilation strategy as the more powerful ones. Other homeowners have reported that lesser power vents have a propensity to swirl rather than expel air. While a steady air flow is vital for preventing mildew accumulation, the discharge of hot air from the attic is most important. And flimsy powered vents aren’t going to cut it.
On top of the ostensibly complex disadvantages listed above, there are the electricity bills. Power attic vents that are hard-wired must be plugged into your home’s power source, which will definitely raise your energy bills. Though the additional costs may seem insignificant over the course of a few days or weeks, they pile up over months and years. Traditional hard-wired systems have been transitioning to solar power over the last few years due to higher running costs.
Solar Powered Attic Vents
Solar-powered attic ventilation eliminates nearly all of the electricity expenditures associated with traditional hard-wired vents, but it does not eliminate the drawbacks that powered attic vents in general have.
Simply reducing the electricity costs has no effect on how the unit functions. The fans are frequently either too powerful or insufficiently powerful. Unfortunately, there’s no way to guarantee that you’ll get it just correctly. When used in conjunction with a good vertical ventilation strategy (such as a ridge vent exhaust and soffit vent intake), powered vents can cause damage that would not have occurred otherwise. It’s not always true that more is better!
For these reasons, it’s advisable to adopt more natural, tried-and-true roof exhaust solutions. You’re better off without a powered fan in your attic if you already have good venting, even if it’s powered by solar panels.