A lot of people don’t realize how important venting in your attic is.  Your attic space is designed to have air coming through the soffits and out the roof vents.  A shake roof normally didn’t have any venting in the soffits as it was built so that the whole roof would vent or breathe.  A fiberglass roof needs adequate venting or the roof will essentially rot from the inside out.  When a new roof is installed you have to make sure that there is proper air venting on the new roof to avoid issues.  Normally you don’t notice an issue till it's too late. (nobody likes climbing in the attic to take a look)  

Normally the vents are a black square on the backside of the roof, normally closer to the top of the roof where the heat would go.  The number of vents will depend on how large the attic space is and the size of the house. 

There are about 4-6 vents on average from what I see.  A house built in the 70s or earlier didn’t have soffit venting and just has plywood covering up where the venting should be with a new roof.  This is an easier job than people think.  You need to open it up so that air can get through.  The easiest way to do this is to cut vents or a channel down the plywood to allow for the airflow.  If you leave some of the plywood and cut the slats you can put soffit material up overtop and it covers it up allowing the air to suck up into the attic and do its thing.  The soffit material is quite inexpensive and the job is fairly easy to do so it won't cost you too much to fix if it comes up.  The second part of this is to ensure you put baffles in to allow the air to get into the attic.  They hold tight to the sheeting in the attic and hold the insulation from blocking the new soffit venting you did.  

Another venting issue that I see all of the time is a bathroom or kitchen fan that isn’t connected properly or has fallen off.  These fans are to remove warm wet air from a dryer, bathroom, or kitchen fan out of the house to the outside through the attic cold space.  If the venting pipes aren’t insulated they will create condensation on the outside and cause a moisture problem.  We also see them slipping off of the connection at the top of the roof falling down and just pumping all of that air into the roof on the sheeting causing mildew or mold.  


A fairly simple solution is to replace the pipe with insulated pipe (found at most hardware stores) then connect the pipe with a metal clamp and tape it with metal duct tape or tuck tape, something that once done you never have to go up there again.  If there is mold in the attic, most of the time, wearing a mask, of course, you can clean it and spray it with a mold control spray.

These issues are very common and come up all the time so please don’t be too shocked when you see them come up on an inspection and also the sellers probably have no idea there is an issue up there.  It’s not my favorite place to be so I spend as little time as possible in there but most of the issues can be easily and pretty inexpensively fixed.

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