Proper ventilation in your roof is critical in your home as ventilation not only provides circulation throughout your home, it also keeps air fresh and reduces moisture levels. Choosing the right type of roofing ventilation, however, can be tricky as it can depend on several factors.
Box vents work best with soffit ventilation as they are designed for use in open attics. In addition, the vents do not need to be placed close to roof ridges for optimal performance. Box vents are static and not mechanical. They are placed in a whole that is cut into the roof and then use natural winds to remove hot air and moisture. Most homes need more than one of these types of vents. The actual number will depend on the square footage of your attic.
Continuous Ridge Vents
Continuous ridge vents are installed at the peak of your roof ridge so that warm air can escape from the attic. The vents also create a vacuum that draws the air from the attic and they are the best option if you have vaulted ceilings. Only one is required as opposed to the need for multiple box vents. Continuous ridge vents are also non-mechanical so there is no concern about electrical failures that could lead to problems. However, continuous ridge vents are more expensive than box vents.
In most houses, soffit vents draw air up through the attic and then out a ridge vent. However, not all houses have continuous soffit and ridge vents, but instead have an opening at the gable ends. Houses without rafters or overhangs may not soffits and older houses may not have vents that open into attic spaces. Because older homes were not as airtight as modern homes, condensation may not be as much of a problem although roof ventilation may help reduce energy costs in those homes.
Improper roofing ventilation causes colder air in an attic to mix with warm, moist air from the rest of your house. The combined temperatures cause condensation to form which can damage your home. If you have noticed peeling or blistering paint on gable-ends or exteriors, it could mean you do not have proper ventilation in your roof. Buckling roof shingles can also indicate improper ventilation. Ice dams, which occur often in the Midwest and Northeast where there is significant winter weather may indicate that you need to address your roof ventilation. Even water stains on a ceiling may not mean you have a roof leak, but that you have condensation dripping from your roof.
If you are interested in learning more about roofing ventilation, contact us today to speak to one of our knowledgeable customer service staff. You can speak to them by phone or complete the form online to learn more about the types of ventilation available.
Up to 30 percent of your heat and air conditioning is lost through your windows which is why you should invest in ENERGY STAR efficient windows. Over time, energy efficient windows can save you a considerable amount of money in heating and air conditioning costs. However, there are many different options available, so it is important to know if you are choosing the right windows for your home and exactly what they will do to keep your family comfortable.
What Makes Windows Energy Efficient?
There are three factors that determine if a window is energy efficient. Some types of glass are more energy efficient than others. Some types of energy efficient windows, such as the WeatherShield Zo-E Shield glass is coated with multiple layers of coating to add energy efficiency. They also have inert gas-filled airspace that adds additional energy efficiency. The type of window can also have an effect on the energy efficiency. Casement and picture windows often have more energy efficiency as do fiberglass windows while wood and vinyl windows are less energy efficient. Proper installation can also make a difference in how energy efficient windows are.
Energy Efficient Replacement Windows
If you are considering replacement windows, it is important to replace older windows with windows that are more energy efficient. Not only do these type of windows lower your energy costs, they can also increase the value of your home. The windows come in full-frame so you can replace the entire window including the frame or you can choose pocket frame windows which are fully assembled and able to be installed in the pocket of an existing window. If your frames are in good condition, you may only need to purchase sash kits that are more efficient.
Understanding Energy Ratings for Windows
There are several energy ratings for windows that can be important when you choose new or replacement windows. The U-Factor, which ranges from 0.20 to 1.20. The lower the number the better the window insulates. The Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) ranges from zero to one with the lower number indicating that less heat is allowed inside through the window. Visible Transmittance, which also has a range of zero to one, indicates the dimness of the room with higher numbers indicating a brighter room. Air Leakage must be 0.3 for most building codes and a lower number indicates an airtight window. Condensation Resistance ranges from 1 to 100 and indicates the amount of condensation a window may build up.
How to Read an Energy Efficient Label
Windows come with label approved by the National Fenestration Rating Council. Since the climates in different parts of the country vary, it is important to use the energy ratings on those labels before choosing windows. The labels appear in the upper left corner of a window and will also include the manufacturer, model, style and materials used in construction.
If you are looking for windows that are more efficient, whether as replacements or for new construction, contact us online or by phone today. Our experienced customer service representatives can help guide you to be sure you choose the windows that best meet your needs.
Building or remodeling a home allows you to spend time picking out all types of new patterns, styles and accessories for your home. This may include countertops, light fixtures or flooring styles. Although not as exciting as a new granite countertop, there is one aspect of a home that is just as important – the shingles on your roof. Choosing the right shingles is not only important because they are visible from the outside, but you also want to be sure the shingles you choose provide other benefits in your home. Before choosing shingles, it is important to know more about the types of shingles available, their life expectancy and how they protect your home.
Types of Shingles
Before choosing the right shingles, it is important to understand the differences between types of shingles. Traditional asphalt shingles are coated in asphalt and ceramic over a fiberglass or organic base. Fiberglass creates a shingle that is lighter but more durable than other types of material. Architectural shingles, which are also known as laminated dimensional shingles, are also made of fiberglass and asphalt, but weigh as much as 200 pounds more per square. Traditional shingles look like three flat rectangles when placed along the roof. Architectural shingles are not cut into tabs, but are over-layered in order to create a more dimensional appearance. They provide a unique look to a roof line and are considered more durable than traditional shingles. Because they are heavier, they can withstand higher winds. Builders prefer them because they can hide errors and flaws better than traditional shingles. They also work better with turrets and gables often found in roof lines. Architectural shingles are more expensive and are not recommended for low-sloped roofs, however.
Recognizing Worn Shingles
Architectural shingles last about 40 years while traditional shingles last around 20 years. It is recommended that homeowners check their shingles for wear periodically and replace any that may be damaged or worn. Signs that your shingles need replacing include small circles or cracks at the edges as well as algae or moss growth. Worn shingles may have bald spots where the granules have been lost as well as divots and pitting. Damaged shingles can cause water to be trapped underneath, damaging the roof structure. Shingles that are blistered may be due to trapped moisture or they may indicate a defect that could be covered under the shingle warranty.
Purpose of Shingles
The main purpose of shingles is to protect your home from inclement weather. In addition, shingles also protect your home from pests like insects and rodents. Properly installed shingles provide drainage from the roof peak, also protecting your home from excess ground water that can cause damage to the foundation. Shingles need proper ventilation as well to provide adequate protection. Your builder will more than likely recommend insulation in your attic as a way to help shingles protect your home. Without adequate ventilation, shingles may buckle, compromising your roofs protection. Shingles also act as a barrier, keeping water and heat from entering the home, damaging interior supports.
If you are building a new home or performing maintenance on the roof, you need to be sure to choose the right shingles, not only for aesthetic purposes but to protect your home from water and sun damage. For more information and guidance on choosing the right shingles, contact Tri-County Exteriors today.
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