A well maintained roof a source of pride for a household. It lives longer and gives no trouble to the members living within the building. A roof is also the structure within a building which is exposed to the maximum extent to natural elements like winds, snow, hail and sunlight. This demands extra precautions and care for the roof. However, the roof also remains the most neglected part of any building, may it be a home or a utility building. The most important aspect of a roof is its ventilation system. A proper ventilation system for a roof is often the single most important factor which governs its longevity. A roof having a good ventilation system, along with proper maintenance will live approximately 25% more than any other roof.
So what constitutes a good roofing system? A good roof ventilation system ensures that there is balance between the air coming in and the air going out. The cross ventilation of air around the roof keeps the roof temperature bearable and also keeps the material used in the construction of the roof from reaching very high temperatures.
What constitutes a proper ventilation system? Actually the ventilation system for all structure is based on the principle of a wind funnel. A proper roofing ventilation system will consist of an air intake hose and a corresponding exhaust hose to ensure there is proper ventilation of air within and under the roof. The passage of external air around the roof will act like a cooler and ensure the internal temperature will not rise to a temperature greater than that of the air outside. The system is akin to the fireplace we have at homes. The warm air rises and creates a slight suction near the mouth of the intake hose. The relatively cooler air outside the hose removes excess heat from the underside of the sheeting as it exits the exhaust. This cycle of heat exchange regulates the temperatures of the new shingle, saving your investment in roofing from becoming a cinder.
The choice of a ventilation system will depend upon the size, shape and the material used in constructing the roof. Proper ventilation systems consist of vents and hoses in the roof such that there is balanced air flow under and over the roof. It is estimated that in a balanced air ventilation system for a roof, there is a requirement of one square foot of venting for every 250 to 300 cubic foot of air in the attic or the space immediately below the roof. This also translates to an appropriate number of vents within the roof. These vents range from static open units and turbine style ones to thermostatically operated and electronic ones. The choice depends upon how deep your pockets are and the size of the roof.
It is always advised to have an expert look at the roofing structure and then suggest the ventilation system. Ideally the ventilation system is designed at the time the roof is constructed. However, with time, certain blockages and other external factors tend to dislodge the ventilation system. This requires for a re-check and re-calibration of the roof venting system. Care must be taken that the vents and hoses are not blocked and proper air circulation is possible and allowed within the roofing structure. It will ensure the longevity of the building and also ensure that there are no leaks and related problems in your roof for a long time.