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Hi, I live in a Philadelphia rowhome. I installed cheap roof vents and in the process of cutting out the little square for the vents realized my rowhome has a metal roof covered by a rubber roof.

The attic area has a lot of mold, dry rotted wood, etc.

Is there supposed to be a layer of sheet metal over the planked wood? Then rubber on top of all of that?

To be clear... the layers are:
rubber
rubber
sheet metal (now I can see this between the cracks of the planked wood)
plank wood (visible in the crawl space/ attic)

The home was constructed around 1910 to 1920.

I am not doing any roofing myself. After looking at this, I think the entire thing needs to get ripped up to let the roof/ attic breathe. Without researching it, I'm assuming the metal traps all vapor and should not be there.

I'd appreciate any feedback.

Party on,

Philly metal causing mold
 

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What type of "rubber" is installed? EPDM (real rubber) or modified bitumen (the rubber that isn't real rubber but people still call it rubber)?

Most likely this is what happened... Previous building owners went cheap and when the metal roof began to leak rather than tear it off, they just installed numerous roofs atop the old metal.

Without seeing the roof I can't really make a suggestion. You can learn more about flat roofing options and frequently asked flat roofing questions on my website. If you post some pics I'd be happy to make some recomendations.
 

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The metal wouldn't be trapping any more moisture than the 'rubber' roof. From the limited info I'd say your problems are more ventilation related.

A picture of the roof, and of the attic space would be nice (as well as any ventilation you have in the attic space.
 
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