If you want your attic to be well-ventilated, you need to install attic baffles; you can choose to do it yourself if you do not want to involve a professional. But how do you install attic baffles on your own?
This article covers how to install baffles in your attic, the different types of baffles, and how many you need. It also discusses when you should forgo DIY and contact a contractor to install the baffles. But first, let’s explain what attic baffles are.
What Is an Attic Baffle?
Baffles are vents designed to channel airflow through specific parts of an attic. They are also known as insulation baffles, wind baffles, venting chutes, and rafter vents. Baffles are manufactured from cardboard, polyvinyl chloride, or rigid foam board.
You can buy an attic baffle from home-improvement stores and install it yourself with a few staples. Even if your attic is well insulated, you need additional air circulation, which you get with baffles.
Moisture can still find its way into your attic even if you have a well-sealed roof. If there is no ventilation to carry away the moisture, it will accumulate till it becomes mold and mildew.
Mold and mildew feed on organic materials, including the wood that supports your roof. Also, if left that way, it will weaken the rafter and roof deck.
If your attic has mold and mildew, our experts will determine the cause and proffer solutions. In addition, we offer a five-year free mold removal warranty.
When snow and ice on the rooftop melt, it rolls down the roof, where it freezes and forms ice dams in the soffit section. The soffit section does not get warmed by the heat of your house.
Also, ice dams can damage your roof and eavestrough if not taken care of. However, if you have attic baffles that aid proper ventilation, the temperature from your attic will be more consistent, reducing the likelihood of ice dams forming.
Attic baffles help insulation vents perform better. As a result, your home will be cooler in summer and warmer in winter.
Types of Attic Baffles
The material used in making attic baffles determines the type. The following are the available options:
- Foam Rafter Baffles: These baffles are used to channel hot and cold air to roof vents to keep insulation from blocking the soffit part of the roof. They look like egg boxes and have extra cones to open the soffit vent. Also, Styrofoam rafter vents are light, flexible, and affordable, and you can easily install them with staples.
- Cardboard or Plywood Attic Baffles: Cardboard baffles function like extruded foam baffles. They are made with corrugated stock that is easily foldable and stapled to keep insulation from spilling into the soffit area. Also, cardboard baffles absorb moisture, helping you reduce mold and mildew.
- Plastic Attic Baffles: Plastic attic baffles are made from high-impact polystyrene (HIP). They do not absorb moisture or grow mold and can withstand the pressure from insulation. Also, plastic attic baffles feature a versatile design adaptable to various heel heights.
Out of these three, the more practical option is the foam attic baffle. This is because they ensure even air circulation and keep insulation parts from pressing against soffit vents.
How to Install Baffles in an Attic
We broke down how to install baffles in an attic into three simple steps.
- Start by inspecting your attic and noting what you need to keep and what should be taken out. Next, determine if you need to remove the old insulation, check if all the rafters are exposed, and if you have drywall. When working around your insulation, ensure you put on safety gear like gloves, goggles, coveralls, and a dust mask. This keeps you safe and prevents irritation to your eyes and skin. Note that if you used drywall or plywood to cover your roof rafters, you must remove it to install the baffles.
- If you have existing insulation, take it off the attic edges, precisely where you are installing the baffles. Each space between the rafters needs a baffle, and you must fit each one snuggly into the bay. The bottom should start where the ceiling joist meets the roof rafters. Afterward, use a staple gun to staple the edges. Ensure they are well aligned and secured, and note any roofing rails that might stick out of the rafter or bay. You can seal the connecting points with spray foam to prevent air leaks.
- After installing the baffles, put back the insulation or install a new one. Ensure the baffle keeps the insulation from hitting the rafter bays.
How Many Attic Baffles Do I Need?
The size of your attic determines the number of baffles you need. For example, if your attic is 150-square-foot, you require a one-square attic baffle. Hiring a contractor to help you accurately measure your attic and determine how many baffles you need is best.
When to Hire a Contractor to Install Attic Baffles
Since installing attic baffles is not rocket science, you might be tempted to do it yourself. While nothing is wrong with this, it is always best to hire professional contractors. Also, it is best to do this at the beginning, not when you hit a snag.
Installing attic baffles is a contractor’s full-time job, so they will commit enough time to it and will ensure proper installation. Also, contractors are trained for the job and have adequate insurance and licensing. Finally, you keep yourself safe by leaving the job to qualified professionals.
Let Us Help You
Getting a professional to handle your attic baffle installation is safer and better. At Green Attic, we do not only install attic baffles; we conduct routine inspections to ensure there is no dampness or mold growth.
We will also ensure your attic is well ventilated all year round and we are fully licensed and insured. Contact us today to learn more about our services.