Does Your Attic Show These Signs of Trouble?

Moisture in your attic can come from a leaky roof, or from household appliances that create steam which travels upward to condense on the underside of your roof. Wherever it originates, though, excessive moisture is a cause for concern, as it can damage the structure of your home, or even be a health hazard for your family. Mold and rot can quickly spread to other areas of your home, hiding unseen in your walls until damage is extensive – and expensive to repair. Just as you should inspect your electrical, furnace, and other household systems periodically, so should you take a close look at your attic.

At least once a year, grab your flashlight and head into the attic. Look for water stains around the chimney or other openings, inspect any protruding nails for rust, and keep an eye out for mold and mildew. Insulation should appear dry and puffy, not damp or flat.

Moisture isn't the only attic danger, either. Summer heat can cause the temperature in your attic to soar, which can dry rafters, resulting in warping and cracks. Extreme temperatures inside also shorten the life of asphalt shingles, so be sure to inspect your roof as well. In addition, super-heated attic air can force your air conditioner to work overtime, driving up your electric bill.