Static vent installed on a shingle roof for passive attic ventilation with proper flashing

Should You Replace Your Roof Vents When Getting a Roof Replacement?

12 minutes

Getting a new roof can require a lot of thought about what material you should use, what exactly should be replaced, and what should stay. Another decision that many ask is, do roof box vents need to be replaced when getting a new roof? In this article, we will be discussing what box vents are used for, how long they should last, signs that they need to be replaced, and if it matters what kind of vents you choose. 

Types of Roof Vents? 

There are a variety of types of roof vents on the market, and they all serve a similar purpose. Some are passive and just help ventilate your attic, while others are active and help regulate your heating and cooling systems. It is best to select a vent type based on your needs and budget, and your local home improvement contractor can help you determine which type is right for you. Most of the time, you will want to select a passive vent, but if you have a particularly large space in your attic, an active vent may be a better choice. In theory, you should install a vent for every 300 sqft of attic space, however, if your roof does not have a vapor barrier then there should be a vent for every 150 sqft.  

Your home’s ventilation works by pulling air from outside and into your attic while forcing out the heat from the inside. Both passive and active systems do the same job- to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter and one is no better than the other. 

Passive Vents 

Passive vents are passive in the sense that they are not powered by electricity or other power sources. They are powered by the natural convection of air that moves through the ventilation system. Active vents are powered by electricity or other powered sources such as solar. The most common types of passive vents are static, gable end vents, and ridge vents without a baffle.  

Static Vents 

Static roof vents are usually metal and are a single-piece structure that typically attaches to the roof overhangs or eaves of your home and creates a venting chimney. The chimney directs the flow of air through the roof vents and up to the roof ridge or gable of your home. They are mounted on the roof and are operated manually. These vents are the most basic and least expensive roof ventilation system. They are often used to exhaust warm air from your living space and force it outside, where it will be removed from your home by the wind. Static vents often work by creating an air flow path on the roof that vents the hot air into the air outside. 

Ridge Roof Vents Without a Baffle 

A ridge vent is cut into the ridge and runs all the way across your roof. Ridge vents without a baffle are the most used roof vent type and can be found in commercial and residential buildings. They are not much different from ridge vents with a baffle, although without the baffle nothing stops the stifling air from directly entering your home. A ridge vent without a baffle only vents the warm air to the outside. They are not designed to stop frigid air from coming in, which means that they do not protect your home from the cold. There are also issues with these types of vents because they do tend to trap rain, snow, and debris to enter your attic.  

Gable End Vents 

The gable end of your roof is called a gable. A gable vent, also called a gable end vent, is a hole cut into the end of the gable. The gable end vent is a simple rectangular opening that allows warm air to leave your home but does not let chilly air inside. It vents the warm air outside and keeps the frigid air inside. Gabble end vents are commonly used to exhaust the warm air from your attic and direct it outside, where it will be removed by the wind. They are also used to exhaust the warm air from your home in the summer and bring in cool air in the winter. A gable end vent is one of the most popular roof vents because they are aesthetically pleasing and can be easily cut into the gable of your home. 

Active Air Vents 

Active vents are also referred to as Powered Roof Vents or Electric Roof Vents. They are roof vents that are powered by electricity or other powered sources such as solar. Both styles of vents have the ability to both exhaust and intake new air, which allows them to be used to exhaust or intake heat while keeping your home at the temperature you set it at. They are better at removing the heat from your home and better at cooling your home in the summer and warmer in the winter. The most common types of active vents are turbine vents, ridge vents with a baffle, power vents, and solar-powered vents.  

Solar Powered Roof Vents 

The heat from the sun can be collected and used to run a fan, which pushes the hot air out, so it can be removed from the home. A solar-powered roof vent is a roof vent that derives its energy through the use of solar panels. They are considered the most environmentally friendly type of roof ventilation. A solar powered roof vent is a system that uses the energy from the Sun to run an external device without using electricity from the grid. They are usually mounted on a building’s peak or ridge and monitor the air quality in the attic, which can help you understand how to keep your home cleaner and reduce the effects of air pollution. The units are small, lightweight, and energy-efficient and can save you money by reducing your energy costs. 

Turbine Vents 

Turbine vents are commonly used in attics and basements of houses. They are usually cut as part of the gable end of the roof and installed in a ridge. A turbine vent can capture the energy of the wind and use it to power an external device. Turbine vents, also called power vents, are a form of roof ventilation that uses exhaust fans or turbines to exhaust warm air out of a building. Turbine vents are great at moving air around your attic. There is a common misconception that turbine vents are penetrable by water and snow because they have slats that are cut into the vent, but they are designed to do the opposite.  

Power Vents 

Power vents are another type of power-driven roof ventilation. They are like turbine vents; except they use power instead of exhaust fans to move air around the attic. Power vents are a smart choice for homes with low ceilings, as they are designed to fit into smaller spaces. Power vents are a type of active roof ventilation that uses a power source to move air through your home. They are like turbine vents, but instead of using the energy of the wind, they use the energy of a power source such as electricity. Power vents are better at removing the heat from your home and better at cooling your home in the summer and warmer in the winter. The most common types of power vents are power vent with a baffle, power vents, and solar powered vents. These types of vents due tend to fail after a while and will need to be replaced at some point down the line. They are also not great at removing moisture from your home and can build up humidity, especially in the winter.  

Ridge Roof Vent with Baffle 

The Ridge Vent with Baffle is a type of Roof Vent with a baffle that is used for attics and basements. The baffle allows the heat from your home to escape, while still allowing fresh air to enter the space. The baffle also helps direct the air flow in such a way that reduces the need for fans, which helps keep energy costs down. The ridge vent with baffle is considered the most energy-efficient type of roof ventilation. A ridge vent is a vent that is cut into the ridge of your roof. They let fresh air in and exhaust stale air out so your home stays comfortable, even when it’s hot. Most ridge vents are power vents, which use exhaust fans to remove heat from your home. A ridge vent with a baffle is a type of power vent that has a baffle, which is a screen designed to improve the airflow through the vent. 

Why Are Roof Ventilation Systems So Important? 

A ventilation system in your attic is an important part of keeping your home comfortable, even when the temperature is hot or cold. It removes the heat and moisture from your attic, which prevents your home from getting too hot or humid. It also helps keep your home clean by removing the odors that build up in your attic. A ventilation system in your attic is usually made up of a series of vents and exhaust fans. 

Importance of Attic Ventilation

If your attic ventilation system is not working properly, your home’s air quality will be affected. When your attic ventilation system is not working properly, the hot, stale air in your attic will accumulate. This will make the air in your home uncomfortable and unhealthy, especially if you have small children or animals in your home. Over time, this will damage your home’s air quality, causing respiratory problems and other health problems. 

How Long do Roof Vents Last?  

The average lifespan of a roof vent is about 10-20 years, but the lifespan of your roof vent will depend on a variety of factors. Some factors that will affect the lifespan of your roof vent include the type of roof vent, the material your roof vent is made from, and the care your roof vent receives. Generally, roof vents are made from metal or plastic, but there are also varieties made from wood, steel, and other materials. The type of material your roof vent is made from will affect the lifespan of your roof vent. Roof vents made from metal usually last longer than other materials, but any kind of vent material usually comes with some maintenance work every so often.  If you ever notice signs of a leak, your old vents could be a good suspect for the leak. We created an article about how to find a leak and how to fix it

Over time, your roof vents will require some maintenance to keep them in good condition. This maintenance can range from minor things, such as cleaning debris out of your vents, to more major repairs, such as replacing your roof vents entirely. This is normal and should be expected. The frequency of the maintenance you need to perform will depend on your roof vents’ material. 

Signs Your Roof Vent Needs To be Replaced 

If your vents have started to look worn, or if they are making strange noises, it may be time to replace your roof vents. When you notice signs that your roof vents need to be replaced, it’s best to have a professional inspect your roof vent to determine which type of roof vent would be best for your home. Signs your roof vents need to be replaced include bent or broken vents, holes in your vents, and missing parts. If any of these signs are present, it is time to replace your roof vents. Your local contractor can help you decide when it is time to replace your roof vents. Roof vents do get old and will start to wear over time. It may be a clever idea to replace your vents when you replace your roof if you had not done it already.  

DaBella Roof Replacement & Roof Vent Experts 

DaBella is well known as the top roofing contractor in the United States. We have been granted this by one of the top publications in the home improvement industry; Qualified Remodeler. This is in part because we have solidified ourselves and proven repeatedly that we execute flawless installations. We care for our homeowners and show them that we are transforming the home improvement experience and go above and beyond for our customers.  

DaBella is currently found in 13 states and offers home improvement services to homeowners that are near our 38 locations. We have conducted and executed thousands of jobs over the last ten years for homeowners for either their roof replacement, James Hardie Fiber Cement projects, vinyl window installation, or bath and shower installations.  

DaBella and our partner GAF are proud to offer our homeowners top-of-the-line roofing materials, factory-trained installers, and industry-leading warranties. Because of our relationship with GAF and holding high standards for our installations and customer service we have been recognized as a Master Elite Roofer. This title gives us the opportunity to provide the GAF silver-pledge and golden-pledge warranties. We offer our roofs in a wide range of styles and options and we can find something that will meet your needs and taste. For a free no-obligation estimate, call us today at 844-DaBella and we will have one of our qualified specialists come to your home and give you a free consultation and estimate. We look forward to showing you the possibilities for your home for your roof, siding, windows or your bathtub or shower.  

Steven Shortridge

District Manager

Portland, OR

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