10:20AM | 04/04/05
Member Since: 02/26/01
35 lifetime posts
I’m not sure if this is the correct forum or if this should be in roofing but here goes. I bought a 70 year-old house in Northern Virginia and have a chronic problem with snow/ice melting on the roof (probably causing ice dams and definitely allowing roof full of snow/ice to slide down and damage gutters, etc.). I have insulated the attic (R-30) but the house is balloon-type construction so there is still warm air leakage in the winter. (I’m working on that but it’s a long-term project.)

The question is: can I install the insulated foil board across the rafters to help prevent the heat from reaching the shingles and snow/ice? I know this is debated for summer use but what about this application. I have a small vent on each gable end that allows for passive air movement but that doesn’t seem to be enough. I neighbor also suggested a small exhaust fan to pull cool air into the attic but I don’t want an active system, plus this will probably just draw more warm air into the attic from the house (that idea might work if the heat source was radiant heat from the upper floor ceiling.)

Thanks for any insight.


12:54PM | 04/09/05
Member Since: 01/28/01
171 lifetime posts
With R-30 in the attic, I don't know if radiant heat is the problem. Did you use two crossing layers of insulation or use blown in insulation to block air flow?

A passive system could include eave vents (which you should have anyways) and a ridge vent. Your problem may be too little air movement.
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