What Could Be Wrong in the Attic?

As a home owner, have you ever gone up to your attic? 

Being one of the most neglected part in your home, attic space in fact plays an important role in keeping your home and your family safe and sound. This space between the roof and the upper floor ceiling contains the framing members of the roof structure.

The attic space bears the insulation which keeps your house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It also acts as a breather in your home as it continuously dealing with moisture and warm humid air that entered from the living place below. (attic is not usually designed for storage!)

Attic space being a significant part to the integrity of your home, we always spend a considerable amount of time and effort to inspect, despite its difficult accessibility. Below is a list of issues we commonly discovered inside the attic.

Roof leak

We look for evidence of water intrusion. Watermark on roof sheathing, wet insulation, rotted wood structure, mold growth are commonly seen in houses with a leaking roof.

Insufficient Ventilation

Attics allow venting of roof spaces to flush warm, moist air out of the building components. Air should move freely from soffit vents, through soffit baffles, into the attic, and out of roof vents. Inadequate air movement leaves evidence of condensation and mold on the sheathing or structural members. Poor air circulation also makes your attic too warm in the winter and too hot in the summer.

Venting Problem

Exhaust fans in kitchens, bathrooms and laundry dump stale and moist air directly outside, usually through ducts in attic. This type of ventilation eliminates moisture and air pollutants before it has a chance to damage the buildings. Leaky or disconnected ductworks result in condensation damage and mold growth in attic.

Insufficient Insulation

Attics with insufficient insulation cannot keep warm air inside your living space. Excess warm air that enters the attic can lead to condensation and mold growth. It also dramatically increase the energy cost from heating and cooling the house. On the other hand, poorly installed or shifted insulation may cover the baffles and soffit vents, blocking the ventilation in attic.

Rodent Activities

It is common to see signs of rodent activities in the attic. Rodents will leave poop and pee in the attic as long as they are allowed to stay. It becomes a sanitation problem. Consult a pest control company as soon as possible.

Fire Damage

Sometimes we will see attics that have been painted white. Often it is done to cover over evidence of a fire in the attic or home. Wood members get covered with smoke, soot or get charred after a fire has been put out. Painting the wood members makes the attic look better and to encapsulate the burnt smoky odor.

To protect your home from all kind of damages, homeowners should inspect and perform maintenance to the attic regularly, at least once a year. Remember to wear proper protective gears including a dust mask and a well-lit flashlight before getting in. If you are uncomfortable doing the job yourself, hire a professional!

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