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  1. #1
    Kim Van Langen's Avatar
    Kim Van Langen Guest

    Default turbine vents in attics

    I live in a townhouse complex. A few of the units suffered ice dams last year that did damage to the interior of the units--it was a very severe winter. Currently the units, which were built in 1976, have soffit and roof vents. A contractor came to our board meeting and stated that the attics had dead air because they needed turbine vents. I have been inspecting homes since 2005 and see very few turbine vents. Usually if baffles let the air from the soffit/eave vents through then the air circulates and goes out the roof vents. The main problem that I have with installing the turbine vents is that holes would have to be cut into existing asphalt roofing. I know from experience that if not done properly this may lead to leaking. I am looking for third party opinions on this issue. Are the turbine vents needed? Until last winter the complex had almost no problem with ice damming.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    5,847

    Default Re: turbine vents in attics

    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Van Langen View Post
    I live in a townhouse complex. A few of the units suffered ice dams last year that did damage to the interior of the units--it was a very severe winter. Currently the units, which were built in 1976, have soffit and roof vents. A contractor came to our board meeting and stated that the attics had dead air because they needed turbine vents. I have been inspecting homes since 2005 and see very few turbine vents. Usually if baffles let the air from the soffit/eave vents through then the air circulates and goes out the roof vents. The main problem that I have with installing the turbine vents is that holes would have to be cut into existing asphalt roofing. I know from experience that if not done properly this may lead to leaking. I am looking for third party opinions on this issue. Are the turbine vents needed? Until last winter the complex had almost no problem with ice damming.
    What changed last winter from years past? If it was just a severe winter I would not change anything. If after 35+ years and they have not had ice dam problems I would think that the ventilation was OK.

    Wind turbines or whirlybirds as some folks call them work just fine, but I would consider adding ridge vents if you wanted to change the high part of the ventilation system. If you add anything you would need to close up any of the upper level vents on the roof.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

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