Attic Ventilation Basics

When many people think about their roofs, they think about how a roof keeps out moisture and the outdoor elements. In fact, people are more likely to think about the roof as a single, solid object. However, in order for a roof to function properly, there needs to be appropriate attic ventilation in place. While these aren’t just holes in the roof to have holes there, attic ventilation breaks up the solid surface that is commonly thought of as your Dallas roof. So, where and how do we install attic ventilation in a roof, and why do we do it?


When you look at a roof, you may notice a variety of fixtures sticking up out of it. Many of these fixtures are for more obvious things like your chimney, bathroom fan, and ovenhood. You may spot an occasional attic fan up close to the ridge of your residential roof. These can take various shapes from a low-profile box to a metal bubble that looks a bit like a mushroom. These ridge vents have fans that help to move hot air out of the attic space. If you don’t immediately notice a vent of this nature, don’t fret, there are a few other places that roofing vents are commonly installed in. Another very common place for vents to be placed is in the soffits. These vents sit in the eves and are installed into the soffits where your roof overhangs. Many of these roofing vents will simply look like an air duct vent you would find on the interior of your home. Lastly, the ridge of your roof may be a vent in and of itself.


The ideal situation is that you will have proper attic ventilation installed when you have a new roof installed, making it easy to place. However, attic ventilation can also be added by roofing professionals after a roof has been in place for years when necessary. Here are a couple of ways to identify if you need additional attic ventilation installed:

  • Visually inspect your roof. Do you have vents to begin with?
  • On a warm day, touch your upstairs ceiling. Is it hot to the touch?
  • Does your roof dry off from a rain storm unevenly?
  • Upon inspection, does your attic contain moisture during cooler months?

If you can answer yes to any of the above questions, then you probably need additional attic ventilation installed into your roof. Let the professionals come out, inspect your roof, and install any necessary ventilation elements.


While adding attic ventilation may not seem like a big deal or something you need to worry about, it’s actually a very important aspect in the care and upkeep of your home. Because attics are simply a pocket of air, this air can become superheated in the summer, causing problems, and allow for a buildup of moisture in the winter. Poor attic ventilation can lead to the following problems:

  • Premature aging of your shingles
  • Breakdown of your home’s wood frame
  • High utility bills
  • Moisture buildup in your attic
  • Damage to interior ceilings and spaces

You may wonder how any of these things could happen simply from not having proper attic ventilation. Like we mentioned above, because the attic is a pocket of air, during the summer the heat can easily get trapped in there under a dark roof. These super hot temperatures can warp both the shingles from below and your home’s framing. This also taxes your air conditioning system, as the hot air acts as an additional insulator, forcing your home temperatures to remain higher than they would be with proper ventilation. On the flip side, during cooler months, the temperature differences will cause moisture to condense inside your attic. This moisture will wet down insulation and framing, potentially leading the mold growth and a further problems with your home’s framing. In addition to protecting your home from damage, many roofing manufacturers require proper attic ventilation in order to maintain the warranty on your new roof. There is a small correlation between shingle cracking and premature shingle aging and poor attic ventilation, as proper ventilation is a minor factor in helping keep your roof cool.

Attic ventilation is an important, yet often inadequately applied aspect of your roof care. Contact Crest Exteriors for a proper roof installation with attic ventilation, or if you need help making sure that your attic is properly ventilated on your Dallas home. Call us today!