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Old 07-03-2012, 02:39 PM
 
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Has anyone added soffit vents and a ridge vent to their home? I'm curious if these two items improve ventilation and allow hot air to escape from the attic?
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Old 07-03-2012, 02:46 PM
 
Location: Visitation between Wal-Mart & Home Depot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ2MDdude View Post
Has anyone added soffit vents and a ridge vent to their home? I'm curious if these two items improve ventilation and allow hot air to escape from the attic?
Yes, they do work. A well designed ridge vent with adequate soffit ventilation will cool your attic about as well or even a little bit better than powered ventilation.

Your attic will still be hot in the summer, though. It isn't like you will want to have coffee up there.
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Old 07-03-2012, 03:36 PM
 
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Generally the goal of such ventilation is NOT primarily occupant comfort. It part of the design of the roofing super structure. The idea is that a roof deck that is superheated will result in reduced lifespan of the roof.

I would also caution that the time to do this is when a new roof is laid out. After-the-fact you run too much risk of rely destroying the integrity of the water seal that the roofing is supposed to provide to the structure...
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Old 07-03-2012, 04:20 PM
 
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to add to the other great post, beyond just hot weather, they serve a very important role in cold weather as well.
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Old 07-03-2012, 04:40 PM
 
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I believe some form of ventilation in the attic is mandatory on most modern building construction as the ventilation up there is the main defense against mold build up in the attic.
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Old 07-03-2012, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimboburnsy View Post
Yes, they do work. A well designed ridge vent with adequate soffit ventilation will cool your attic about as well or even a little bit better than powered ventilation.
Apparently you don't understand fluid dynamics.
Convection cooling relies on temperature indifference. A power roof ventilator creates positive displacement ventilation regardless of temperature.
The "con" of a power roof ventilator is- it's mechanical! Definition: it will fail.
A convection system won't fail- but it doesn't always "work".
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Old 07-03-2012, 09:56 PM
 
Location: Texas
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If you're asking if it will vent the hot air- yes. If you asking if it will lower the utility bill-no. You'll need a radiant barrier for that. In testing by Building Science Corp, they have shown many times in models and in actual homes that providing maximum ventilation buys you little. A sealed attic system where the air is not allowed to vent at all and with a radiant barrier will reduce utility bills substantially. With max ventilation, a laser temp probe will show the same attic insulation temps, with or without the vents. Some of the builders have integrated this into their building methodology and are now guaranteeing the max utility bill for a specific house plan. So far, it's working with most coming in lower than expected. Ryland was the first in our area with their EFL series of homes.
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:38 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ2MDdude View Post
Has anyone added soffit vents and a ridge vent to their home? I'm curious if these two items improve ventilation and allow hot air to escape from the attic?
It's a natural convection. The more important thing is it allows moisture to escape.
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Old 07-04-2012, 07:05 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecoalman View Post
It's a natural convection. The more important thing is it allows moisture to escape.
Right. Moisture is the great danger to the roof system, framing, decking. Trapping moisture without allowing it to escape can cause expensive structural damage.

For cooling, a high pitch is necessary for ridge and soffit to vent properly. There needs to be enough vertical differential for convection to work. That is why ridge vent is not recommended in low pitches like 4/12, but works better on 8/12 and higher pitches.
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Old 07-04-2012, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Southeast, where else?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K'ledgeBldr View Post
Apparently you don't understand fluid dynamics.
Convection cooling relies on temperature indifference. A power roof ventilator creates positive displacement ventilation regardless of temperature.
The "con" of a power roof ventilator is- it's mechanical! Definition: it will fail.
A convection system won't fail- but it doesn't always "work".
Well said young man...well said....I do believe, however, that the solar powered attic fans do help create the positive movement of air.....and yes, they will wear out and/or fail over time...at least there will be no incremental power costs associated with them.....my problem is trying to find two 20 or 30 watt powered fans that are built to withstand an occasional hailstone hit or UV degradation for say 10 years. Something that has a lexan type cover over the solar cell....something real heavy duty.

Any ideas?
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