Residential Roof Vents Explained: Ridge, Box, Turtle

Residential Roofing Ridge Vents

Types of Roof Vents

The best type of roof vents for your home are the ones that work best with your home’s airflow and roof design to remove the most cubic footage of attic air space effectively. Static roof vents do not contain any moving parts or motors and utilize convection to remove damaging heat and moisture from a home’s attic. Ideally, choosing the type of roof vent used for your home’s roofing ventilation would also take into account the prevailing climate in your area, thus preventing issues caused by weather. The three most common static roof vents include the box vent, turtle vent and ridge vent.

By understanding the basic form and function of each type of vent, you can better choose the system that will ultimately provide your home with the most efficient level of ventilation possible. This will not only keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter, but also help control humidity in your home. A well-designed system of roof vents can reduce your energy bills while increasing your level of comfort year-round.

Box Vents

One of the most common types of static roof vents is the box vent. This type of vent is exactly what it sounds like: boxes that move heat and moisture out of an attic by providing an outlet for air to exit the space.

Box vents are popular because they provide a very economical way to ventilate your attic, especially if your home already has good soffit (eaves) ventilation. They are ideal if your home has an open attic. Box vents must not be placed very close to the ridge of your roof. Box vent installation is simple, quick and easy. Since their range of effective airflow is limited, box vents must be installed at regular intervals along the roof.

Turtle Vents

Turtle vents, also known as louvers, are installed as close to the ridge as possible. Their design includes a cap that gives them a turtle-like appearance. As air comes in through the eaves, the warmest air will rise up to the ridge and out through the turtle vent.

Turtle vents are relatively inexpensive and easy to install. They can be easily implemented in old homes or buildings that already have static vents. Like box vents, they are not as efficient as ridge vents and must be spaced evenly along each ridge line. They may be aesthetically unappealing to some homeowners and may be susceptible to leaking if not installed correctly.

Ridge Vents

Ridge Vent with Ridge Cap Shingles

Ridge Vent with Ridge Cap Shingles

Ridge vents are most commonly seen on residential buildings with shingles and a sloped roof. Although their overall purpose is the same, ridge vents fundamentally differ from box vents in placement, appearance and function.

Ridge vents are installed at the very peak of a sloped roof in order to provide a safe outlet for hot, humid air. Whenever they are combined with excellent soffit ventilation, ridge vents create a constant flow of air in through your home’s eaves and out through the ridge of your roof.

Unlike a box or turtle vent, ridge vents are typically installed in a way that makes them almost impossible to see unless you are specifically looking for them. For this reason, they are very popular with anyone who wants a sleek, seamless-looking roof. They are also more dependable and less likely to leak.

Most importantly, ridge vents are more efficient than box or turtle vents. Since a ridge vents are a continuous vent along the top of the roof’s ridge, they release the hottest air from the attic with a vacuum-like effect. While other forms of ventilation may create hotter and cooler areas on the roof’s surface, ridge vents provide the most even distribution of temperature. This eliminates the issue of some sections of the roof aging faster than others.

For these reasons, we most often will recommend installing ridge vents on your home for the best results. If your home has small roof ridges or a unique roof design, however, be advised that ridge vents may not be the best type of ventilation for your home.

If you think your home is short on breath or want to make sure your new roof doesn’t suffer from poor ventilation, contact All Weather Tite in Florida or at our Massachusetts Office. Our experts can provide a free estimate, explain proper roof ventilation and get to the bottom of any current ventilation issues that your home and roof may have.

Posted in Roofing Systems, Ventilation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *