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Old 07-09-2009, 10:51 PM
 
1,673 posts, read 5,526,009 times
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So, I decided to have a wind turbine vent installed since I feel my attic does not have enough ventilation. I have gable vents and about 5 vents on the roof and during the summer it's blazing hot up there. I had a handyman replace a regular vent that needed replacing anyway with the turbine. This vent is located in the middle of my roof and of course near the roof pitch. I have been reading mostly good things online but there are a few negatives I read also including depressurization of the attic during windy days, animals having an entrance to your roof as well as rain or snow coming through. I would like to hear your experiences and anyone who has something to offer. Thanks!
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Old 07-09-2009, 11:14 PM
 
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Default Basically is the wrong fix to the wrong problem.......

There are many ways to vent / provide air flow to an attic volume.

The best way to address the problem in not attempt to use any active type system. No fans, no turbine vents, no nothing that pumps or pulls air. It is not really required.

If the house was properly engineered / built in the first place all you need is a good under roof air flow system / ridge vent, end wall vents. This type system has plenty of fresh air entering the roof air flow stream at the soffit vents, usually under the gutters / eaves areas. This air travels up under the roof, picking up most of the heat load coming in via the roof. The hot air vents at the top in either a ridge vent or in a combination ridge / end wall vent. In a good system the rest of the attic remains somewhat in the range of outside air temp. That is how efficient they are. The hotter the sun, the more air flow, it works with Momma Nature, natural circulation forces are the driving power, nothing powered is required. There are no moving parts.

Failing that many peeps attempt to use attic fans, all sort of vents of all types. Many times even those are ineffective if not enough fresh air flow path was provide via the soffit areas to provide fresh cold air into the attic volume. The other main disadvantage is most of those scheme attempt to pump the entire attic volume in some manner. None of them typically are "Problem Following" in their effect / action does not mirror the requirements as weather changes, heat load varies. They provide half measures at best.

The best solution and place to start is to understand how a proper under roof air flow system works, how one is typically built and its operation. Once you have that experience no other equipment is usually needed. I have a under roof air flow system I retrofitted, tho not as complete as I would have liked and normally have zero need for AC. I have window units, never install them. I never will own a house with out a well engineered under roof air flow system, is the only solution for the basic problem of how to vent the attic / prevent heat load from the roof / all the other problems associated with attic venting.
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Old 07-10-2009, 05:26 AM
 
Location: Ridgewood
302 posts, read 1,832,031 times
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Well, I can't add anything to Cosmic's post. But, if the turbine vent was installed near the ridge and you can see it from the front of the house, they're kinda silly looking things to have on a roof.
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Old 07-10-2009, 05:56 AM
 
Location: A little suburb of Houston
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Cosmic's advise is, as usual, right on. It sounds to me like you are not getting proper airflow, if air is coming in the gable vents and exiting the roof vents then the lower air in your attic is not getting moved or circulated. I had this issue (gable + ridge vent) and it does not work. I had my hosue retrofitted with soffit vents like Cosmic described, blocked the gables and got a 10-20 temp drop in the attic. Much better.
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Old 07-10-2009, 06:00 AM
 
8,649 posts, read 14,870,155 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergenite View Post
Well, I can't add anything to Cosmic's post. But, if the turbine vent was installed near the ridge and you can see it from the front of the house, they're kinda silly looking things to have on a roof.
Bur that's how they work the best..
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Old 07-10-2009, 06:54 AM
 
Location: I think my user name clarifies that.
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We used to live on an acreage in a windy area of the country (SW Minnesota). Old old farm house. Huge grove, but adequate air movement.

When I rebuilt the roof, and re-shingled, I installed a turbine vent. It worked extremely well - partly because of where we were located (windy area), partly because if required no electricity to run, and partly because the roof had an 8/12 pitch, and Mother Nature was wanting to work properly anyway.

I had absolutely no problems with rain, snow or animals getting in to the attic through the wind turbine vent.

Later, when I built two additions on the house, I installed the ridge cap vent - which was a new product at the time. That system worked well also.


As has been stated earlier, it's important to know how your attic ventilation system should work. They're not all the same. It's also vital to be sure you have adequate inlet air-flow.
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:18 AM
 
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The house was built in 69 without any soffit vents with just the gable and roof vents. I thought since one of the roof vents was rusting and damaged I would install the turbine in it's place. So far it seems to work well, spinning away releasing the hot air.
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Old 07-10-2009, 10:13 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,849 posts, read 51,301,408 times
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The spinning doesn't significantly increase the airflow, and in fact the restriction of the airflow can reduce it. The design is like that to allow a large open area and the spin will help shed water in a rainstorm.

I had a couple installed on the very low-pitch roof of the house we had in Florida. There were originally soffit vents, but no gable vents, so the attic was a reservoir of heat. I chose turbines for a very simple reason - I wanted to be able to cap them in a hurricane to create a solid roof barrier. A ridge vent wouldn't have allowed that. They did significantly reduce the attic temp in the late afternoon and evening. In the same situation, I'd do the same thing again. In an area not subject to hurricanes, I'd go with soffit and ridge vents (if the ridge vent wasn't one of those cheap wavy things that looks like a drunken roofer installed the ridge shingles.)

As for water intrusion, there was a minor amount. A sheet of plain corrugated cardboard was underneath to protect the insulation, and it developed a few tiny waterspots. The bigger potential issue was termites and carpenter ants, but their patterns of infestation seem to make them not interested in the metal stack and vent on the top of the roof. They are more interested in stuff lower to the ground and protected by eaves.

Turbines have their place, as do other vents. Whatever works best for you.
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Old 07-10-2009, 05:22 PM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
1,855 posts, read 5,672,460 times
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Hello citydweller,

The best ventilation arrangements are an even distribution of vents down ow (soffit area) and vents high (ridge vents, high gable vents, fans, etc). The purpose is to draw air in low and allow natural convection to help air flow out the high vents. When you start adding additional high vents with gable vents you create a "short circuit" condition in the ventilation scheme as described by Poltracker above. Here is an exceptional site that will provide a wealth of information regarding attic ventilation methods, problems, etc., Air Vent. Yes they are a vendor of ventilation products but are also a recognized leader in the field.

Good luck and enjoy the reading!
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:16 PM
 
1,673 posts, read 5,526,009 times
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Thanks for all your suggestions and tips. Keep em coming if you want.
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