Having a new roof installed tends to be a stressful process for homeowners. With so many different components that go into roofing, there are a lot of decisions that have to be made. One area of a roof that is often an afterthought to homeowners is its vents and attic ventilation system.

The function of roof vents and a ventilation system is not talked about as much as other roofing components such as shingles and flashing. However, that does not make it any less important. Today we will be talking about what attic ventilation systems are, what types there are, and if they are necessary.

Before we continue on, if you enjoy this article and find it helpful, we suggest checking out our Learning Hub. We post new roofing content every single week here. We are firm believers in homeowners being able to educate themselves on the world of roofing, and this is just one great way to go about doing that. Educating yourself about roofing is the best way to ensure that you are not getting scammed and that you have the best roofing type for you.

What are roof vents and attic ventilation systems?

A roof vent is a part of a roof and attic ventilation system. The purpose of this system is to regulate the temperature in your attic, allowing it to breathe and maintain safe temperatures. Attics that get too hot during the summer months or too cold during the winter will become damaged over time and cost a lot to fix. 

Attic ventilation systems are extremely important to have and there are two main types that are used. Those two types are active attic ventilation systems and passive attic ventilation systems.

Active attic ventilation systems

Active attic ventilation systems ensure quality air circulation throughout your entire attic. This is done by using mechanical fans which help prevent overheating and moisture from forming. The fans pull in fresh air from the outside while pushing out air that is in your attic at the same time. The air exiting your attic goes through your exhaust vents, making room for more fresh air and a constant rotation.

Active ventilation systems are great because they do an amazing job at making sure that your attic remains regulated. The air is constantly being shuttled around, ensuring the freshest air in your attic at all times and the safest conditions.

Passive attic ventilation systems

Passive attic ventilation systems are different from active ventilation systems. In a passive system, the air is moved around naturally and freely. While active ventilation systems rely largely on the installed blades for airflow, passive systems do not.

Passive ventilation systems instead rely on things such as air currents to naturally create air circulation. This type of ventilation system is nice because it is cheaper since not as much needs to be installed, just a couple of basic air vents. Very little maintenance is required for this system too, meaning it pretty much takes care of itself. None of these vents are better than the other, it really comes down to preference and what the conditions of your area are like.


We now know that ventilation systems are extremely important. One of the main components that allow ventilation systems to work is vents. With so many different vents out there it can get rather confusing to choose the right one for you. Here are the two most common vent types for each ventilation system,

Passive attic ventilation vents

Box Vents

Box vents are a very popular vent type for homes with a passive attic ventilation system. These types of vents require a hole to be cut into your roof. Multiple vents can be installed to ensure maximum airflow. Box vents can be placed pretty much anywhere and can help ventilate even the smallest of spaces if needed.

Ridge Vents

Ridge vents are arguably one of the most common passive attic ventilation options. Ridge vents are extremely long and normally are the entire length of your roof. They are usually installed at the very top of a roof where both sides meet. Ridge vents are capable of managing large quantities of air and drastic temperatures.

Active attic ventilation vents

Solar Powered Fans

Solar power is becoming more and more commonly used throughout the roofing industry, and ventilation systems are no exception. Solar-powered fans are great because they are powered by the sun, lowering costs for homeowners. The amount of solar-powered fans needed to be truly effective depends on the home and situation.

Powered Vents

Powered attic vents are common for active ventilation systems to have. These vents are powered by electricity and help to filter air out of the attic and regulate the temperature inside. Powered vents are great aside from the costs. Depending on how much electricity is needed for your home’s attic to be safe, you could potentially be spending a decent amount of extra money.

How to choose the best attic ventilation system

These are just the most popular vent types used, but there are many different types to choose from. Now that we know about the two main types of attic ventilation systems and their vents, a new question arises. That question is, how do I choose the best overall ventilation system for me? A lot of it comes down to preference, but your roof type also can impact what your options are. We strongly suggest having a reputable local roofing company come and perform an inspection. They can then go over your options and give you their recommendations for your specific roof type.

Wrapping it up

An attic ventilation system is a necessary thing to have and should always be kept in mind when getting a new roof or repairs done. Not only do they keep your attic ventilated and at a consistent temperature, but they keep your roof safe from otherwise severe damage. Ventilation systems are crucial to homes and your safety. Remember, you can always ask your roofer for advice on which system is best for you.

We know that having a new roof installed, or for some, having any roof work done at all can be stressful. We hope that this information helped you learn more about the function of attic ventilation systems, what kind of ventilation systems there are, and that they are in fact a necessary roofing component for all roof types.

We are here to help!

At Liberty Roofworks we have over twenty years of professional roofing experience under our belts, and that number just keeps going up. We pride ourselves on our customer service and high-quality work. We do our best to work with each and every one of our customers to make sure that they feel informed and updated throughout the entire roofing process. All of our roofing contractors are professionally trained, licensed, and insured. We understand that the roofing process can be stressful for some, and it is our goal to alleviate that stress altogether. 

We are a family-owned and operated business that proudly serves Charlotte North Carolina and the surrounding areas. When it comes to roofing, we can do it all! Whether you need a repair, replacement, or inspection, we got you covered. We also offer solar panel installation services as well as commercial roofing too.

Are you in need of any roof work? Contact us today and we will gladly send out one of our professional roofing contractors to perform a thorough inspection of your roof. They will then go over their findings with you and help you figure out what your best course of action is as well as give you their professional opinion. With us, roofing is never stressful!

Frequently Asked Questions about Attic Ventilation Systems

We just threw a lot of information at you about attic ventilation systems and it’s perfectly normal to have some questions. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions we receive about ventilation systems and our answers. If you still have a question, please contact us and we will be more than happy to answer it personally for you.

Q: What happens if my attic is not ventilated correctly?

A: Damage will occur to your attic and roof over time. Without a ventilation system, moisture will form and lurk in your attic. This will then cause mold, a saggy roof, and other serious and expensive roof problems.

Q: Are attic ventilation systems required?

A: Yes, without any ventilation your roof and home will experience significant damage and cost a lot of money to fix. The amount of ventilation needed for a roof depends on its size as well as the roof type itself.

Q: Will an attic ventilation system save me money?

A: Yes, it will, or at least it can. When ventilation systems are properly installed they can lower your cooling bills. Over time, the amount saved really adds up. Ventilation systems also increase the lifespan of your roofing material, getting you more bang for your buck and keeping your roof in the best condition possible.

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