What do icicles hanging down and roofing insulation have in common? Icicles dangling from your home here in Michigan, while you might think they’re pretty, are just a sign of wasted heat.
As noted in other blogs, Above Roofing and Exteriors walks many roofs and evaluates the life and health of hundreds of roofs in the Grand Rapids area. We see many avoidable problems by whichever West Michigan roofers put the roof on the house that is now experiencing leakage or other deterioration of the house.
Many roofs we see that are having problems don’t need replacement yet; much-less-costly repairs often stop a leaking roof and put the roof in good shape for years to come.
What are the signs I need a roof replacement? One set of roof replacement questions Above Roofing customer service reps hear is similar to this: How many years should a roof last? How do I tell when it’s time to replace roofing? What are the first parts of a roof to...
We walk a lot of roofs and troubleshoot many roof leaks in the Grand Rapids area, so we’ve seen a number of roofing mistakes. In some cases, homeowners and/or their friends who aren’t roofers decide to reroof the house. In other cases, roofers have cut corners or not understood certain aspects of the work.
Recessed lights are often “open systems” that allow heat and moisture to pass from the living quarters to the attic. Furthermore, because of the heat generated by the light bulb, some recessed lights are not designed to allow for insulation to come into contact with the can because of fire hazards.
Insulation comes in many forms, the most common of which are shown below. Ideally, there is a vapor barrier between the house and the insulation to minimize moisture entering the attic from the house. This vapor barrier can be attached to insulation batts or is installed separately.
Decreasing the amount of heat entering the attic, by way of appropriate attic insulation, is another way to solve the problem of ice dams in the winter. Enough insulation in the attic also keeps your home cooler in the summer, keeping the sun’s heat on the roof from entering the house.
There are a number of ways for your attic to exhale. Pot vents are very common exhaust device. These are made to go near the peak, but we see many mounted down-roof, which creates problems.
Your attic needs a way to get fresh air in and the hot, moist air out. This is true in both summer and winter. Ideally, attic inhalation involves fresh air enters at the eaves, sweeps up the roof line, carrying the heat and moisture with it, and exits at the peak. Soffit vents are a solution.
Proper ventilation flushes excess heat and attic moisture once it’s in the attic. But another part of the picture is finding out how much heat and humidity are entering the attic in the first place.
Understanding of good attic ventilation has changed radically in the last 40 years. In our experience roofing in the Grand Rapids area, the majority of houses do not breathe as well as they should.