Attic Rain Specialists in Calgary

Combatting Attic Rain: Tips for Calgary Area Homeowners from Attic Rain Specialists

Attic rain season is a tough time for many Calgary area homeowners, but with proper precautions in place, you can prevent this frustrating issue. In this post, you’ll find expert tips from our team of attic rain specialists to help you prevent the need for attic vent repair in Calgary this winter.

What Causes Attic Rain?

Attic rain occurs as a result of inadequate ventilation, which raises the potential for serious envelope issues. Builders are given codes to follow regarding the amount of square footage that coincides with the number of vents that are required to properly ventilate your home. Unfortunately, these codes don’t come with instructions regarding vent placement, and as a result, they’re often placed haphazardly around the roof, causing what attic rain specialists refer to as a short circuit. This short circuit disrupts the flow from under the eavestroughs and out through the top of the attic’s venting.

It’s alarming to note that it’s common to see ventilation under 50% or more in many Calgary homes, which goes against standard building codes. This violates regulations and ruins your home’s insulation and plywood, causing the house to rot from the inside out. The potential damage is significant, underscoring the importance of preventing attic rain.

Another cause of attic rain is poorly connected HVAC vents or tubing from bathrooms and kitchens to the outside of your home. This can cause excessive leaking and stains on your ceilings. Often, people mistake it as a roof leak instead of attic rain. 

A Real Estate Professional’s Perspective 

We wanted to learn more about attic rain from a real estate professional’s perspective, so we reached out to Kristin at CIR Realty, asking how often she encounters problems related to attic rain and what damages she sees as a result. 

“I’ve been on the buyer’s side when it comes to dealing with that sort of issue. Usually, the first indication is yellow spots on the ceiling upstairs. I did just encounter this and we are actually doing the closing on this property today. The home inspector actually got up into the attic and noticed the ceiling fan was not connected properly to the ventilation going to the outside of the roof. It looked like it just needed a simple reconnection, which was what they did.”

We also asked Kristin how this problem might affect the home’s selling price. 

“I think that if it was a large enough issue that absolutely it would affect the property’s value. If I were on the listing side, I would give my seller clients the option of getting a roofer to come in to do a deeper dive into the issue, and then they can make a decision on whether or not they want to repair it before listing, or we list as-is, but we would price it accordingly in that case and disclose.”

Tips from Attic Rain Specialists

No Payne Roofing often warns that many Calgary roofers don’t know how to properly ventilate a house. Often, roofing companies in Calgary simply place venting back on the home the way it was found—sometimes leaving it worse than it was when they got here. It’s important to note that roof vents need to be compatible—when roofers add vents or whirlybirds (wind turbines) that aren’t compatible with what’s already on your roof, problems are likely to occur. 

If you have a roofer conduct attic vent repair in Calgary, you should double-check your attic again after the work is done. Be sure to check it when the temperature outside is between -15 and -40 degrees to ensure the frost has died down, as this can cause additional moisture issues that cost tens of thousands of dollars if they’re not resolved. 

Investing in a quality roof is also a great way to prevent attic rain. While a discounted roof can save money, down the road, it can lead to a huge issue with attic rain. This silent killer is typically absorbed into your home’s insulation before making itself known, meaning your home can be suffering from the detriments of attic rain long before you even know it’s there. Once it begins to stain your ceilings, the insulation has already become mouldy and the plywood has started to rot.

More on Attic Rain from a Local Expert

We contacted Shaun from Urban City Builders to learn more about the causes and effects of attic rain on Calgary homes.

I used to work in the home building industry as a site supervisor. Attic rain, especially in Calgary, is a big thing due to the extreme freeze-thaws that we get when our weather drops down to the -20s, and then we get chinooks that start to roll in. What ends up happening is in the cold the frost starts to build up to the underside of the OSB (oriented strand board) sheathing. If you ever look into your attic at that time when it is really cold, you will actually see frost build up. When the chinook rolls in, and our temperature starts to drop drastically back to zero, it all starts to melt, and that is when you get your attic rain.” 

Shaun recommends running your bathroom fans for at least 60 minutes a day to dehumidify your home and prevent attic frost. 

He says, “People will often say they have water coming out of their bathroom fans, and they think they have a water leak on their roof. The way to mitigate this is when you know the chinook is coming in, you need to be proactive, and you have to turn on your bathroom fans, and they have to run a lot.”

The Takeaway

In most cases, homeowners don’t find out they have an attic rain issue until stains in the ceiling start to appear. By that time, a high level of damage has already been done. Having a high-quality roof and the right vents can help prevent these issues. Vents often used by Calgary builders and roofers providing attic vent repairs in Calgary can be too small, which causes them to become buried in the snow and creating a frost buildup. 

At No Payne Roofing, we often receive calls for attic rain issues from November through March. These calls often number in the hundreds, meaning this problem is likely in the thousands city-wide. Resolving attic rain can cost homeowners tens of thousands of dollars, not including insulation. While quality roofing and proper ventilation can help, regular roofing inspections are the best way to mitigate this risk. 

No Payne Roofing provides roofing inspections ranging in price from $145 to $325. Our attic rain specialists can ensure your roof is in good repair this winter and help you prevent the serious consequences that come with attic rain. Contact us today to schedule your inspection.