Cross Ventilation and Natural Ventilation for Attic Space

Thursday May 30, 2013

By Christophor Jurin

Gable Roof Vent

Ventilation is important in many aspects of our lives. It is imperative for long car trips during the dog days of summer. And it is important for the attic space in your home, especially during those same hot days during the summer. Without proper ventilation the roof system on your home can age prematurely. In addition, your energy bills can increase because of the build-up of heat in your attic space. The best solution is to install ventilation into your roof system.

We have talked about ventilating your roof system in earlier discussions. One key element that needs to be considered as you prepare to install a form of ventilation is the issue of cross ventilation. In order to maximize the effectiveness of your ventilation system, there must be a source of fresh air coming into the attic space. This allows air movement freely through the system. Otherwise, your primary source of ventilation in your attic space cannot draw fresh air into the home which can create a vacuum effect.

There are multiple sources of cross ventilation that can be incorporated into your home's building envelope. These sources of cross ventilation include soffit vents, static vents in general field of the roof and gable vents. These examples of sources of cross ventilation provide opportunities to bring fresh air and natural ventilation into the attic space of the home.

Vented Soffit

Continuous soffit vents provide some of the best sources of fresh air for your attic space. One of the reasons that they so effective is they provide the source of fresh air at the base of the rafters. This allows the entire area of the attic to receive fresh air in comparison with other sources which are not located at the base of the rafters. Without a source of fresh air at the lowest point possible, pockets of stale air can form due to the lack of air movement in those areas.

As with long car trips during the summer, cross ventilation in your attic space can keep down some of those nasty odors! Those musty smells in your attic can be minimized by enhancing the air flow in the attic space. Just remember, in order for something to leave something must enter. If you want the stale air to leave you must provide a source of fresh air and natural ventilation into the space.

Photo © Installation of aluminum ridge vent.

Photo © Jurin Roofing Services, Inc. Vented soffit panels.


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