With the weather these days being – 30 (up to -40 with the windchill), Calgary roofs are seeing some very extreme temperatures. One big issue in Calgary is condensation or the build up of moisture in the home. A common example is moisture or water begins to slowly drip out of a bathroom fan. Of course the homeowner thinks, “There must be a roof leak!” But actually 9.9 times out of 10 this is a condensation problem. Condensation happens when the hot air from the house meets the frost build up of the exterior penetration, and in this case drips down the pipe, and back through the bathroom fan. But this is only one example of condensation. There are many more. Although condensation can be caused by a lack of proper roof ventilation, it is not a roof leak, and more often then not, there are many other trades and parts of the home involved in the problem.
Allen Fellows, a Done Right Roofing owner, and Roof Expert with 30 years experience in the calgary roofing industry, says, “Of course we know that condensation is warm air melting frozen frost. The frost warms up and melts and presents itself as possible leak in so many words. There can be several causes of this…”
- A major cause of condensation on the Calgary roofing scene is bad insulation in the roof attic. Allen says, “…it’s usually insufficient insulation where needed in this deep cold or a lot of times just bad placement of the insulation in the first place.” Although, the homeowner calls her roofing company, that phone call should really go to the insulation company, to fix the root cause of the problem. However, if you are a Done Right Roofing homeowner, don’t hesitate to call us with any problems or questions that you may have!
- Allen identifies another cause of condensation as, “Maybe positive air into the Soffits is insufficient. Possibly the insulation-stops in the attic are blocked off and preventing the inflow of air.” Again, this is something that would require an insulation company to go into the attic and remove the insulation blockage from the soffits.
- Allen says, “ With the Calgary building boom lots of houses were built without proper insulation. Attic hatches not being proper insulated is a problem that can interact with the roofing system to cause condensation.”
- A fourth problem that arises is connected to poor roofing ventilation in isolated spaces this is something that your roofing company could possibly help with. Allen lists the top 4 house areas that typically get cut off from the ventilation system in the rest of the home, “Secondary roof lines, back bay windows, kitchen nooks, closed off dormer spaces, or any area of the house created during framing process that is separate from the main ventilated roof line.”
- The Number 1 culprit for roofing repair calls through the Calgary winter is Bath Fans. Allen describes the problems, “The bath fans are spring loaded and the door in fan can rust and seize open or closed. If it seizes open this will cause natural heat seepage. If it seizes closed of course will cause back pressure.” You will know that this is condensation and not a leak when the water shows up after a deep cold spell is warming up and melting in one of Calgary’s famous Chinooks.
The Done Right Roofing website is one of the most comprehensive resources on residential roofing in Canada. If you would like to know more about condensation or any other roofing issue visit us at www.calgaryroofingdoneright.com.