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Old 08-14-2009, 04:02 PM   #1
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No soffit or gable vents


I live in a 2 storey house that was built in 1920. The roof is very steep and extends down to the first floor. Because of this there is no soffit. There are also no gable vents. The only ventilation are two turbine vents.

I'm having the roof replaced and would like to add ventilation. The upstairs of our house gets VERY hot during the summer. Two of the roofers I've talked to feel that the ventilation is fine. One says to add a ridge vent. Without soffit vents to pull in fresh air, I don't see how the ventilation is adequate and i don't see how a ridge vent will help.

Any ideas? Is my only option to add gable vents?

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Old 08-14-2009, 06:35 PM   #2
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No soffit or gable vents


The key to proper venting is balance and you need to bring in cool air and exhaust hot air.

Not sure where you live, but here in Canada the best solution, in my opinion, would be to remove the roofing material, add soffit vents, spray polyurethane from the roof, insulating the walls/ceilings, and add ridge vent. Now this would be expensive but the polyurethane is rated at R-7 per inch vs the R-3 per inch of batt insulation, and it acts as a vapour barrier keeping out drafts. This would help two fold by allowing the ventillation of the roof (= increased roof life) and increasing insulation (= decreased heating and cooling bills).

However the gable vents with powered solar fan are the best alternative I think. The fan helps move the air on those hot humid days that seem to have no breeze.

Radiant

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Old 08-14-2009, 10:26 PM   #3
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No soffit or gable vents


Will any exhaust ventilation work if there is no intake ventilation?



Yes, but not up to it's fullest potential. It will be decreased my at least 50%.

Now, we are only speaking about enough NFVA for the ventilation.

Even if the proper total is achieved, without Balanced Intake Ventilation, what air inside the attic chamber is really moving and circulating and eliminating the hot spots and the contained moisture from the humidity level?

You should check out the product called Smart Vent from DCI Products Inc., which is an Intake Vent which gets installed under the first several courses of shingles.

I have been using it for over 8 years now and it works very well.

Ed
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Old 08-14-2009, 11:23 PM   #4
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No soffit or gable vents


Mixing vents: http://www.ronhungarter.com/black_mold.html

Wind-washing with vents: http://books.google.com/books?id=Z8a...#PRA1-PA604,M1

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Old 08-15-2009, 07:59 AM   #5
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No soffit or gable vents


Quote:
You should check out the product called Smart Vent from DCI Products Inc., which is an Intake Vent which gets installed under the first several courses of shingles.
This really is a good product, saves money on soffits if you don't want to redo them.

The only issue with addind intake vents is when trying to vent cathedral ceilings where the wall/roof cavity is already full of insulation. For that batt insulation to get it's R-value it traps air within it. That's why batt insulation is so vulnerable to drafts. If you introduce air flow into a space that is packed with batt insulation without adding, moor vents or channel vents than you will be reducing the insulation value significantly. However I think that is better than having mold growth.

Radiant,
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Old 08-15-2009, 02:21 PM   #6
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No soffit or gable vents


Thanks for the advice! It looks like my best option is to use the Smart Vent as an intake vent along with a ridge vent. I'll discuss this with my roofer.

How much does the smart vent cost? My house is about 50' long so I'm guessing I would need about 100'.
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Old 08-17-2009, 05:28 PM   #7
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No soffit or gable vents


I talked to my roofer about using the smart vent. Because he's never used it and doesn't know how much it would cost, he suggested we add gable vents along with a ridge vent and keep the existing two turbines. From my research I believe you're not supposed to combine ridge and gable vents. Am I correct?

Can I combine the gable vents with the existing turbines? Or should I just leave the ventilation as it is with just the two turbines?
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Old 08-17-2009, 05:39 PM   #8
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No soffit or gable vents


You would not be getting the continuous flowage of air from the lower cooler portions of the attic cavity by doing that.

Also, the turbine vents, when turning, will force the outdoor air in through the gable vents, which may seem good at first, but what about windy snow and rain conditions.

There are many home reported all over various sites that have had the bad weather elements brought into the attic this way causing leaks.

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Old 08-19-2009, 09:06 AM   #9
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No soffit or gable vents


Ed, is right, you need proper intake and exhaust. I would be careful (if you install any product that brings in air from the eaves), to make sure that air isn't passing through your insulation.

And if your roofer is unfamiliar with products and how they should be used. I would suggest shopping around for someone who is familiar with these things. Other wise you have someone learning on "your" roof.

I prefer my guys to learn from someone with experience not from trial and error.

Radiant,

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