Radiant roof barriers offer an effective way to save on utility costs. These attic-installed barriers keep your house warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. They have, though, developed a bit of a bad reputation for causing roofs to rot. Is that reputation deserved?
If you have noticed a thin, reflective material in your attic, you probably have a radiant barrier. These barriers bounce warm air into your home during the winter and deflect it away during the summer. As such, those with radiant barriers save a considerable amount on their heating and cooling costs. Any time heat transfers, though, moisture is a byproduct. Excess moisture in the wrong places in your attic can lead to roof rot.
So, radiant barriers must cause roofs to rot, right? That’s not exactly the case. Like with virtually anything, there is both a correct and incorrect way to install radiant roof barriers. As you might suspect, if your radiant barrier was properly installed, your roof probably won’t rot. With incorrect installation, though, your roof might be more susceptible to rotting.
Determining if your barrier was installed properly is relatively easy. If it attaches to your roof’s trusses with the reflective side pointing downward, you are probably fine. If it sits on your insulation, though, your radiant barrier could give you problems. For added peace of mind, you might want to ask a roofing contractor to inspect your radiant barrier to see if it will promote roof rot.
Regardless of the installation of your radiant barrier, if you are concerned about roof rotting, you should inspect your home’s attic ventilation. Generally, inadequate air flow is the primary cause of rotting roofs. If you discover too much humidity in your attic space, you might contract with an experienced roofing company for immediate repairs.
While radiant roof barriers do not generally cause roofs to rot, improperly installed ones can. If you have a radiant barrier, consider scheduling a professional inspection.