Got water damage in your roof? Here’s something you may not know: it’s not always water coming in from the outside. Sometimes the problem comes from inside your home. Warm, moist air gets into your attic and roof. It meets up with the cold air outside–and boom! You have a condensation problem. Prevent damage by controlling hot air and moisture flow in your attic with your roofing contractor’s help.
What Causes Roof Condensation?
If you’ve gone through an introductory physics class, you know that heat rises and moves toward colder air. We see this in action in our homes, as warm, moist air rises from our living spaces and gets trapped in the attic. When interior heat comes in contact with the cold outside air, water vapor hits its dew point. Moisture in the air turns into liquid form as it cools. Condensation creates large droplets on rafters, around windows, floor joists, and other areas of the attic and roof. Keep an eye out for water spots on ceilings and leaks in your roof and walls.
What Problems Does Roof Condensation Cause?
Those water spots that condensation creates can cause damage in several ways:
- The moisture gets into roofing materials, including rafters and sheathing.
- Wet wood can lead to mold, rot, and insects, including termites.
- Water damage from condensation can cause significant structural problems if you don’t catch it. It could potentially weaken the walls and the bones of your roof.
- Water can get into your attic insulation, causing damage and rot.
- Condensation can cause electrical problems if water gets in sockets.
How Can I Prevent Roof Condensation?
There are several steps you can take to prevent roof condensation. Your roofing contractor is an excellent resource for strategies.
- Correctly sized and installed vents create an airflow that prevents condensation and removes moisture. Bathroom vents make sure that rising humidity doesn’t make its way into the attic. Ask your roofing contractor to assess your home to make sure existing vents are working properly. Your contractor can make sure the vent system in your soffits is clear and breathing well.
- Insulation keeps your attic temperature balanced, helping prevent the rush of hot air from living spaces up to the roof. Look for high-resistance insulation that’s the right thickness. Make sure it’s properly installed to minimize gaps.
- Vapor barriers can be installed in your existing roof or incorporated into a new roof. A vapor barrier is a layer of material added to the roof deck. It keeps heated air inside your home but allows moisture to escape.
- Make sure your bathroom and kitchen fans push air directly outside and not into the attic.
- A household dehumidifier can help, but proper insulation and venting are still essential.
- Get your home inspected regularly by a qualified contractor. It helps catch damage before you see water spots and leaks.
How Can I Fix Roof Damage From Condensation?
If the damage is minimal, your contractor will dry out the affected area and repair damaged rafters and sheathing. They may also recommend new or improved vents and insulation to keep damage from happening again. If structural damage is extensive, it may be time for a new roof.
When it comes to condensation issues, prevention and vigilance are the best approaches and will save money and frustration in the long run. DryHome Roofing & Siding has decades of roof repair experience, including water leakage in the attic and interior rooms. We’ll also double-check your soffit vents and maximize the efficiency of your existing ventilation system. We know what to look for, how to fix it, and how to prevent further damage. Remember: regular maintenance and minor repairs can often help you avoid the expense of a new roof.