How To Install Ridge Ventilation On A Home With Roof Shingles

Nothing puts the finishing touches on a beautiful Hamptons or Cape Cod-style home than asphalt roof shingles. As these classically American homes become more popular in Australia, authentic roofing solutions are becoming more widespread.

But since asphalt roof shingles aren’t terribly common in Australia, we thought we’d provide some useful information in how to use them.

In this article we’ll go over how to install ridge ventilation on a home with roof shingles.

Roof ventilation, obviously, is not exclusive to asphalt roof shingles. Regardless of your materials, adequate roof ventilation is essential to allow heat and moisture to escape.

Since asphalt shingles are installed over a solid plywood deck, managing ventilation is handled a little differently to other materials. Here’s our guide for getting it right:

Allowing Air In

In order to let air and moisture out, we must let air in.drip edge ventilation

To facilitate this, you need to start when the plywood deck is being installed. Leave a 10-20mm gap between the plywood and the facia. This gap permits air to enter the roof cavity right around the perimeter of the roof.

Don’t worry about the gap being unsightly — the overhanging drip edge (see our article about that here) will hide this nice and discreetly.

Air will now be able to easily circulate within the roof cavity. This allows fresh air to enter beneath the drip edge and replace the hot air that will be escaping via the ridge vents.

Speaking of …

Leading Air Out

Air in the roof cavity will gradually heat up and rise. To allow this hot air out, we need ridge vents.

As with letting air into the roof cavity, our ridge vents begin their life during the installation of the plywood deck. To allow adequate exhaust ventilation, you’ll need to leave a 35-40mm gap in the plywood at each ridge.drip edge eave ventilation

When the hot air escapes out of the vents, it will actually help draw air in from beneath the drip edges. This is how the flow of ventilation will cycle through the roof cavity.

You’ll need to install a capping over these ridge vents, like with other roofing materials — otherwise your roof cavity is going to flood the second it starts raining.

This is done in two stages.

The first stage is to apply a mesh over the ridge line. This mesh will prevent the capping from blocking off the vent, rendering it useless. It’ll also help stop unwanted things or critters from getting in through the vent.

We use GAF products for all of our shingle roofing needs. They’re the leading supplier of asphalt roof shingles in the US. They also manufacture other roofing materials, such as exhaust vent grids.

For our roof ridge vents, we use GAF Cobra Exhaust Vent. It’s an incredibly tough, durable mesh that provides ample ventilation, while keeping everything you don’t want in your roof cavity from making its way inside.

ridge ventilation gapInstalling it is easy — roll it over the entire ridge line, centre it in place, and nail it down.

Now comes stage two, adding the ridge capping.

GAF also supplies ridge capping you can use on your ridge vents. This will help preserve the look and aesthetic of your roof shingles, while providing your protective capping needs.

And that’s it! Your roof will now be well ventilated, expelling hot air and moisture and drawing in cooler air.

Why We Use GAF Asphalt Roof Shingles

As we said at the beginning, various American-style homes such as Hamptons and Cape Cod-style houses are growing in popularity across Australia. Many new developments across the nation are adopting these classically American styles.

But one thing that’s often overlooked is the roofing materials.

In Australia we often use tin or tile — there’s not much in-between. That’s why it’s not uncommon to find Hampton-style homes with tiled roofs. It looks about right and gives the appropriate feel.

But it’s not authentic.cobra ridge vent roof shingles

Instead, asphalt shingles are the authentic roofing material of choice. There’s nothing quite like them in their look or quality. If you’re trying to capture that true American look and feel, only asphalt roof shingles will do the trick.

And when it comes to asphalt roof shingles, nobody beats GAF.

GAF is the leading supplier of roofing shingles in the US. Their products are found on roofs from New York to LA. They’re high quality, durable, long lasting — and they look great.

As we mentioned, GAF also supplies a full range of roofing products to make sure you can put together a roof start to finish with a sleek, seamless aesthetic that roof shingles are known for.

And they’re not just for American-style homes. Roof shingles are a great looking roofing material with excellent insulating qualities absolutely perfect for the Australian climate. Whether you’re putting together a new home, or considering a renovation, roof shingles might be the pleasant change of pace you’ve been looking for.

Interested in Building Hampton Style?

We’ve been putting together a series of how-to articles on the various stages of roofing with shingles. From laying the plywood foundations to setting up drip edges, waterproofing, and vents, we’ve got you covered every step of the way. Check out the rest of our blog for useful tips and advice.

Have a question about roof shingles? Send us a message; it might even be our next blog article.

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