title:Preventing Water Damage in the Attic author:Terry Allen source_url:http://www.articlecity.com/articles/home_improvement/article_1494.shtml date_saved:2007-07-25 12:30:12 category:home_improvement article:

Controlling the natural drying of your property must start at the attic as it is located at the top of the house, separating between the roof and the rest of the house.
Ceiling and Floor
Be sure to look both up and down when inspecting the attic. Pay special attention to openings through the roof such as pipes, vents and the chimney. Take a look to confirm that all surfaces are dry and that there is no mold or rot. Also, check the bottom of the roof sheathing and roof rafters. It is recommended to inspect during the morning to make sure that the roof is sealed and that no daylight penetrates through roof cracks. Inspect the floor and make sure it is dry.
Recessed Lights Canisters
The presence of rust and corrosion indicates possible moisture invasion and a potential electrical hazard. Additional indicators for potential water damage are stains above or near the wood, or on the insulation around the canisters. Consider replacing old recessed lights canisters with newer, safer ones that include built in insulation.
Attic ventilation is important. Commonly, vents are installed along the peak of the roof. Moisture or surface discoloration near vents is a sign, locate the moisture source and fix the problem. When inspecting the roof, remove any bird nests and debris blocking the vents.
When damaged by moisture and water, the insulation becomes thin and flat. Check the insulation frequently, especially after the rain season. Touch it. If it feels wet, find the moisture source and fix the problem right away. Remember: wet insulation is useless, but it will continue to hold water for a while and will create high moisture conditions. If the insulation is wet, replace it.
Common Attic Appliances
Periodically, check attic air conditioners, swamp coolers and HVAC systems. Look for wear and tear and loose connections. Inspect around and under these appliances. Remember that appliances failures may cause water damage to everything that lies below.

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