Installing soffit vents is one way to protect your home from excess moisture and rot.
Many homes today are built so that they are practically airtight. Modern building materials allow for such snug construction — they make it almost as if you’re living in a bubble.
We’re trained to think this is good. New, energy-efficient windows keep out more cold (or hot) air, saving you money. We buy weather stripping for our doors, we caulk around openings, all in an effort to save energy and money.
But when does it all become too much?
THE INVISIBLE ENEMY
It can be hard to tell — you can’t always see all the places where moisture collects, like inside walls. One place you can see it, however, is in your attic. If you go up into your attic and notice that the inside of your roof has condensation on it, your attic has inadequate ventilation.
Many homes are built with ventilation holes in the attic walls. These ideally should be covered with some type of screening to keep out critters. Exhaust fans in the attic are also helpful with removing hot, damp or stale air.
But sometimes these methods aren’t enough. Moisture can build up, and rot can set in. Installing some vents in your soffits can help.
Soffits function as a cover for your eaves. Without soffits, the underside of your roof would be exposed to the elements and would deteriorate more quickly. Soffits are invaluable at protecting your roof and attic, but sometimes they do their job too well.
Installing some vent holes along your soffits can provide badly needed air circulation, helping to keep your attic dry and your roof safe from rot.
SOFFIT VENTS AND ENERGY
Homeowners sometimes worry that holes in their soffits, walls or roof are a path for energy to escape out into the atmosphere. But these soffit holes aren’t like an open window. They’re carefully placed to do their important job.
Ideally, your attic floor (the same as the ceiling in your living space) is well insulated. Vent holes or no, if it’s not, you’re definitely losing energy. Closing up vents in your roof as a means of trapping warm or cold air is futile. After all, the inside of your tool shed on a 20-degree day is no warmer than the outside, although it might feel that way if it’s windy. So fresh air in your attic won’t cost you money. In fact, it will save you money in the long run.
SCREEN YOUR SOFFIT VENTS
Others worry about critters gaining access to their homes. This is a valid concern, but easily rectified with the proper placement of screening or weep hole covers.
If you have excess moisture in your attic, it’s only a matter of time before you will have to deal with mold and mildew, and maybe even wood rot. Get some vents built into your soffits now — it’s the fastest, cheapest way to take care of this problem.
Renovation by Burbach can install soffit vents as well as repair or replace old or damaged soffits or fascia. We’re the go-to experts for all your household exterior needs. Call us if you need work done on your soffits, or any other part of your home’s exterior.