Attic Heat: Why Should You Care?
When it comes to household spaces, attics often remain overlooked. Out of sight and out of mind, it’s easy to dismiss the significance of attic heat. However, just because you rarely venture into this area doesn’t mean it should be ignored. The consequences of attic heat are far-reaching, causing potential damage and wreaking havoc on energy efficiency. Tackling attic heat is a vital step towards maintaining a healthy and energy efficient home.
In the summer months, it’s crucial to grasp the staggering reality of attic temperatures in many parts of the United States, soaring to a scorching 150 degrees or more. This may come as a surprise to most individuals, underestimating the intensity of the heat lurking above.
It all begins when the sun’s relentless rays heat up the roof, leading to a transfer of heat into the attic space. Subsequently, the house’s framework absorbs this heat and transfers the heat into the living areas of your home. As the heat within the living space increases, the workload of the AC unit also increases. This heavy workload is inefficient in energy usage and therefore costly in your electricity bill. Additionally, the heat overtaxes the unit itself resulting in potential damage to the system or a decreased life of the unit.
Seal, Insulate and Ventilate
In order to reduce attic heat, there are a few important improvements you should address in your attic:
- Seal all cracks and openings between your living space and attic.
- Check to make sure your attic has proper insulation.
- Ensure effective ventilation is in place.
These three steps create an important barrier between your living and attic spaces. This limits the heat transfer between your attic and conditioned spaces. Furthermore, these enhancements contribute to better energy efficiency throughout your home.
There are a few things to consider as you make these improvements. According to Energy Star, homeowners often make the mistake of adding so much insulation that it covers and blocks soffit openings. You don’t want to do this! Blocked soffits prevent the outside air from blowing into the attic to create the necessary air movement.
With proper ventilation, the cooler and fresher outside air must be brought in, and the hot air inside the attic exhausts out through the highest points of the attic space. However, it’s important to note that outside air during summer doesn’t result in a cold or notably comfortable attic environment—it remains hot! Inside the attic, it’s hard to notice the difference between 120 degrees and 140 degrees—you just feel extremely hot. But remember, that’s the same difference as feeling the change from 80 degrees to 100 degrees, which is a noticeable twenty-degree difference.
Reducing Attic Heat
How do you reduce attic heat? The answer is simple. Exchange the air in the attic with fresh outside air when the outside air is “better”.
Proper ventilation is crucial when it comes to reducing attic heat. By ensuring adequate airflow in your attic space, you can effectively minimize the buildup of hot air and maintain a cooler environment. When the outside air is circulated through the attic, it helps dissipate the trapped heat and prevents it from affecting the rest of your home.
This ventilation process typically involves intake vents, such as soffit vents or gable vents, that allow fresh air to enter, and exhaust vents, such as ridge vents and fans, that facilitate the expulsion of hot air. Exhaust fans and circulation fans create the air movement and help to circulate and exhaust the hot stagnant air.
By creating a balanced ventilation system, cooler air can continuously flow, leading to a more energy-efficient attic. The ATMOX controller creates an environment where fans can be effectively utilized without introducing excess humidity, further improving attic cooling.