Five Things Not To Do When Venting Your Attic

A good environment for your attic is very important. Your attic ventilation system should work together and not against each other so it is important to make sure the system is balanced. Below are five mistakes not to do when it comes to your attic ventilation.

1. Placing Intake Vents Too High or Exhaust Vents Too Low

You want a balanced system that brings in fresh, cool air at the lowest part of the attic space and sends out the warm, moist air at the highest point of the attic space.

If the vents are placed in the wrong spots, the airflow will not work correctly. This will hinder the attic vent system’s effectiveness. If they are too low on the roof, they can disrupt or short circuit the system. Remember the rule of thumb is to place the intake vent should sit at the lowest possible point on the roof which lines up with the lowest part of the attic space. Exhaust vents should be placed at the highest possible point. This point aligns with the highest part of the attic space.

2. Mixing Exhaust Products within the Same Attic Space

Doing this can short circuit the airflow. Also mixing exhaust products can allow for weather and leaves and debris to come into the home through the attic.

Always use the same type of exhaust vent in your attic space. Also, make sure that the vents meet the NFVA (net free ventilating area) requirements. This will allow continuous airflow through the attic space.

3. Cutting the Ridge Vent Opening Too Long

Sometimes homeowners want to put a ridge vent along the entire ridge for looks but this is doesn’t mean you have to cut open the entire air slot on the ridge below the vent. Doing this can disrupt the airflow of the whole system.

An example of the correct installation can help with understanding the process. If a homeowner has an attic space that must have 288 square inches of exhaust and a 4ft plastic ridge vent is used with an 18 square inch per lineal foot of NFVA, then only 16 ft of the 40-foot ridge needs to be cut open.

4. Clogged or Blocked Intake Vents

Weather and debris such as paint, dirt, dust or even spiderwebs can clog your intake vents even if they are installed correctly. Check your intake vents and clean them by removing the debris. Remember to never install attic insulation from the inside over the vent, and make sure to check to see if the hole in the vent has been properly cut.

5. Having Missing or Inadequate Intake

This is the most important component of the attic ventilation system. If there is no air coming in through the intake or not enough, an exhaust vent will not function correctly. The powered exhaust vents will also overrun and burn the power vent’s motor. Remember always check that you have a balanced attic ventilation system with the proper amount of intake and exhaust ventilation for the attic space being ventilated.

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