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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions about Whirlybirds

Do Whirlybirds Work?

Whirlybirds allow the hot air and moisture that is trapped within your roof cavity to escape naturally. Whirlybirds also provide a high level of air quality for your home by preventing the build up of fumes, stale air and damaging condensation. A whirlybird is essentially a specailised covering that protects a large hole in your roof. Hot air and moisture rises up and escapes through this hole, while the whirlybird turbine and flashing prevents rain water from entering the roof.

Do whirlybirds make a difference?

It is difficult to say whether or not whirlybirds or powered roof vents will lower the temperature of your home.

The general rule of thumb is that 35% of the heat in your home comes through the roof. Having whirlybirds or powered roof vents installed allows some of the hot air trapped within the roof cavity to escape.

However it is difficult to calculate exactly what effect roof ventilation will have for your home as each home is designed and built differently. It is very much dependent on what is actually causing the build up of heat in your home. This is something an architect or energy consultant would usually advise on.

As we are just a roofing company, our recommendations are simply based on the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Do whirlybirds leak?

When installed by professionals, whirlybirds do not leak or let in rain. Whirlybirds have been installed throughout Queensland for the last 100 years – and if they leaked, there would be a lot of soggy ceilings.

To install a whirlybird, we either cut a hole in a metal roof or remove a roof tile from a tiled roof, which allows for the hot air and moisture trapped within the roof cavity to escape. We then fix and seal the whirlybird base flashing over this hole, then fix and seal the whirlybird throat and turbine to the base flashing. The sealant protects the whirlybird base flashing and throat and ensures they are water tight.

Due to the spinning motion and centrifgul forces acting upon the whirlybird turbine, rain water is unable to gain entry in to the roof cavity. When there is no wind and the turbine is not spinning, the rain water simply runs down the outside of the fins on the whirlybird turbine.

We provide a 15 year parts and labour warranty on all our whirlybird installations, so we stand by our products and our workmanship. If you ever have any issues with your whirlybird installation, simply give us a call and we will sort it out.

How many Whirlybirds do I need?

The manufacturer recommends 1 whirlybird for every 90m2 of roof space in order to maintain optimum Air Quality. This is equivalent to 1 air change per hour up to 90m2 for a normal pitch roof.

So for example, the manufacturer would recommend 2 whirlybirds for a 180m2 home.

We use satellite imaging to plan the whirlybird install with you prior to arriving onsite. We can measure the size of your roof, make some recommendations and send you an itemised quote with a number of different options.

Where to install Whirlybirds on a Roof?

Whirlybirds are generally positioned at the very top of a roof along the highest ridge line. This positioning allows whirlybirds to work most effectively, as hot air and moisture will naturally rise and accumulate at the highest point of a roof, where it can escape through the whirlybirds and in to the environment.

However whirlybirds can be installed anywhere on a roof. If you have a particularly problematic area of your home that requires ventilation, you can install a whirlybird on the roof directly above this area. For tiled rooves, this is not a problem at all. However with metal rooves, an additional dry pan flashing is required to protect and prevent water from penetrating under the upper edge of the whirlybird base.

We generally try to position the whirlybirds on the rear aspect of your roof as much as possible in order to preserve the aesthetics of your home and maintain its natural street view. Our tradesmen are all experienced roofers who are skilled at finding the best possible locations for your whirlybirds to go.

We use satellite imaging to plan the whirlybird install with you prior to arriving onsite. And our tradesmen are more than happy to discuss all the possible locations with you on the day as well.

Do Eave Vents Work?

Yes eave vents make whirlybirds more effective. The more cool air you can get in to the roof, the more hot air you can get out. Eave vents are essentially intake valves, allowing cool fresh air to be drawn in through the eaves at the bottom of the roof. This increases the flow rate of air throughout the roof cavity and also increases the exhaust rate of hot air through the whirlybirds at the top of the roof. The minimum number of eave vents recommended by the whirlybird manufacturer is 4 per roof vent.

Are Ceiling Vents Necessary?

Ceiling vents allow hot air, fumes and moisture to be drawn up through your ceilings and in to the roof cavity, where it can be exhausted in to the environment by powered roof vents. We recommend one Ceiling Vent per powered roof ventilator, placed directly below the powered roof vent in order to achieve maximum effectiveness.

Please note that ceiling vents are NOT normally recommended or compatible with air conditioning.

We currently offer two types of ceiling vents – a circular always Open Ceiling Vent and a square Closeable Ceiling Vent. The square Closeable Ceiling Vents are useful for controlling the flow of air internally, particularly desirable during the change of seasons from Summer heat to Winter cool.

How to Replace Noisy Whirlybirds?

Yes we do replace noisy or seized whirlybirds, however please contact our office for an estimate on how soon we can attend onsite.

Generally whirlybirds are installed in pairs and when one whirlybird starts to go, the other one isn’t far away. Standard residential whirlybirds have an average life span of between 10 and 15 years (the CSR Edmonds Windmaster Whirlybirds we install come with a 15 year parts warranty).

So when it comes to replacing whirlybirds that have failed due to old age, we always recommend replacing both of them at the same time – as it is 25-30% cheaper for you to replace both whirlybirds, compared to replacing one whirlybird now and the other one down the track.

How to Replace Whirlybirds that have Stopped Spinning?

Yes we do replace noisy or seized whirlybirds, however please contact our office for an estimate on how soon we can attend onsite.

Generally whirlybirds are installed in pairs and when one whirlybird starts to go, the other one isn’t far away. Standard residential whirlybirds have an average life span of between 10 and 15 years (the CSR Edmonds Windmaster Whirlybirds we install come with a 15 year parts warranty).

So when it comes to replacing whirlybirds that have failed due to old age, we always recommend replacing both of them at the same time – as it is 25-30% cheaper for you to replace both whirlybirds, compared to replacing one whirlybird now and the other one down the track.

How to Repair a Whirlybird?

Yes whirlybirds can be repaired. The most common cause of whirlybird failure is for the bearings to rust or seize. This can result in the whirlybird turbine making noise, slowing down or prevent it from spinning all together. Replacement whirlybird bearings can be purchased separately – by simply looking up the manufacturer’s data sheet and searching for the listed bearings on the internet.

However we do not recommend whirlybird repairs. We found that when repairing whirlybirds in the past, further issues would always seem to arise resulting in additional call outs and costs. As such, we simply recommend replacing the entire whirlybird unit. This not only saves money (by preventing unnecessary call out fees) but ensures your whirlybirds are brand new and completely problem free. We also guarantee peace of mind with our 15 year parts and labour warranty.

What is our Whirlybird Installation Warranty?

We provide a 15 year parts and labour warranty on all our whirlybird installations. We use CSR Edmonds Windmaster Whirlybirds as standard for all installations – the best quality whirlybirds available on the Australian market.

Do I need to organise my own Electrician when Installing Mains Powered Roof Vents?

Our Mains Powered Roof Vent pricing already includes the connection of your vents by a Licenced Electrician. Our Licenced Electricians will install a 240 Volt AC electrical socket within 1.5m of your AiroMatic roof vents. This allows for the power supply of your AiroMatic roof vents to be plugged directly into mains power.

If you would like the option to turn your AiroMatic roof vents on and off from a wall mounted switch, you will need to organise this yourself through your own electrician.

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