Versa Tile Vent - Anyone used one before ?

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by tph1, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. tph1

    tph1 Member

    Thinking of buying and fitting a couple of Versa Tile Vents (from Screwfix) to vent a pitched roof.

    Wondering if anyone has any experience of using them ?? I can't see how they can't adversely affect the roof when inserted between tiles. I've got interlocking concrete tiles which must surely be pushed out of place when something is inserted between them ????

  2. Roofer

    Roofer New Member

    You shouldn't have a problem, they replace a tile and the surrounding tiles are cut to fit (if needed), exactly the same principle as a velux rooflight.
  3. tph1

    tph1 Member

    OK.... I think I have misunderstood this product. I have been looking at something called lapvent that is installed from the underside of the roof (DIY skills only). This obvioulsy does not require any external access. I presumed the Versa tile was a similar system, but maybe it isn't.
  4. Roofer

    Roofer New Member

    The Lapvent is installed from inside and basically just holds the felt laps apart to allow air flow from the naturally vented area between the undersde of the tiles and the felt into the roof space. Provided they are cheap enough it would make the job easy but it wouldn't take much imagination to devise another way to hold the laps open.
  5. tph1

    tph1 Member

    Very true.... they have replied to my enquiry and 2 Lapvents cost £90 + VAT.

    Seems a lot of money for what it is....
  6. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    The cost does cover the full kit: 2 x vents (inlet & outlet), re-securing felt cover, battens, strap and other fixings. What cost external access and smashing about outside, or just carelessly breaching a roofs defences?

    This is one of those things where 'there is more to it than meets the eye'! Many safety features are involved here, i.e. - insect and small rodent infestation, ingress of wind driven rain and snow and wind-load uplift hazards (caused by insecure openings in the roofing underlay), etc. (see BRE & BSI reports)

    As they say; "why make holes in perfectly good roofs"!

    A roof is usually the most ignored (until they fail!) and certainly the most misunderstood part of our buildings. Wiser to take the best option, although it may not actually appear to be the cheapest ‘at the time’!
  7. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    Hi tph.

    As you've sussed out, the Versa Vent takes the place of a tile and needs careful installation if you are not to affect the integrity of the roof - shouldn't be a problem if the instructions are followed carefully. The 'lapvent' is a clever (simple?!) idea that clearly has its benefits.

    However, the money being asked for the 'lapvent' is plainly opportunistic - "it'll save you x amount of time and money, so we'll charge you a teeny bit less than that for our bits of plastic...".

    Cynical? I don't think so, because there's very little more to the Lapvent than there is to the Versa or Alpha or whatever.
  8. Roofer

    Roofer New Member

    As this thread goes back to January let's hope tph has already solved his problem!
  9. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

  10. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    As a matter of interest, how much would an 'Alpha' vent (or comparable external system) cost per unit? Just one is not much use, of course then you would have to take into acount any damage or cutting in/replacement, etc., of the tile/slate/stone cladding and making good.

    It certainly needs thinking about.
  11. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    Hi Joatmojo.

    There is no doubt that the Lapvent could work out cheaper when all things are taken into account - particularly labour charges, but does this in itself justify it's ridiculous price? It surely costs no more to make than the Alpha, etc., so the manufacturers are cashing in on the overall cost and hassle savings made to the builder.

    All it needs is a competitor...
  12. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    Watcher Dev,

    I’ve not actually seen the Alpha tile vent yet, but I have recently seen a Lapvent unit. There are several elements to it including a pressure closing flap and a rather effective looking screen filter. It’s quite a clever piece of kit really, loads of surface area for condensation to settle and no places for moisture to pool or foul things up, and no weak spots to let anything but air in.

    I think the thing with Lapvent is it is not just a simple plastic copy of a tile or slate, it is a piece of fairly unique kit and no one has come up with anything quite like it before – as you probably know, since the introduction of underfelt the industries tried just about everything else to cure the lack of airflow in roof voids (there were over 380 various types of external contraptions on the market a few years ago).

    If a product is brought onto the market by someone other than the ‘Big Players’ and it is not shifting by the hundreds of thousands, I suppose it will cost.

    But I know what you mean Dev.
  13. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    Hi Joatmojo.

    I've fitted a couple of Alpha vents in my own own house - whilst the roof was being re-slated! It's a basic, but adequate, item; no moving parts, strong enough, etc. Mind you, adding the flexi pipe adaptor (essential, cos they designed the vent part with an oval fitting... :() doubles its cost, so it's about £20.

    But I know what you mean too :)
  14. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    Hi Dev,

    I have just seen an ‘Alpha’ slate vent (on the web) so now I know roughly what it is we are talking about (I think!).

    It appears to be a solid enough product as you say which would be simply produced I suspect, the ‘free’ airflow is a major factor though, for common venting purposes you would need x 2 to match ‘Lapvent’s’ 20,000mm2. So the cost per item is pretty well matched there really.

    There was something similar (although a different fitting) on my sons roof in Torquay and he had a really bad problem with moisture dripping back down into the system, water had to be emptied out of the flexible pipe every so often. Like yours, the piping came straight down and didn’t allow the condensation to run out. Not that the ‘Alpha’ vent will do that but it is worth taking into consideration.

    A re-roof is often a necessary but very expensive undertaking and unless someone capable is working outside we don’t always have the opportunity to fit external devices in our roofs without help, and yer know what the Elf & Safety police is like these days!

    (I can’t do those face things!?)
  15. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    I got mine from Screwfix.

    I haven't used mine for venting from a fan yet (they're installed in the roof waiting for me to finish the job!), but I have one connected for a soil vent for the new loft conversion loo - obviously condensation won't cause a problem there.

    I suspect any length of pipe which sits in a cold space and terminates on a roof, could have problems with condensation. A solution could be to have the fan on a timer and keep it running until all traces of condensate have been blown away!

    Will the LapVent be better in this respect? I do accept that anything which allows a vent to be fitted without having to disturb the tiles is a great idea - but would having the condensate trickling down between the tiles and the felt be a good idea longterm; the battens immediately below might have something to say :(

    Oh, and :) is done by typing a ':' followed immediately with a ')'

    And you could always use a '(' instead of a ')' if you're not happy...

  16. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    Right Dev,

    I suppose it’s where cold meets warm air and if that juncture is not facing the right way it goes back down the way it came.

    ‘:’’)’ (it doesn’t work for me!)

    Moisture gets into a roofs batten cavities constantly throughout the seasons, you’ve seen a roof steaming in the sun after a rain fall - also through storm driven rain and snow. Unsealed roofs have always had to manage environmental change that is why it is so important that they be allowed to breathe freely.

    A negligible drop of water (on the right side of the underfelt!) won’t hurt as long as it can disperse to atmosphere naturally and in any case it’s doubtfully that any moisture from a vent will land on susceptible woodwork – what little there was would trickle down the underfelt to the eaves or atmosphere.

    Have a nice weekend Dev.
  17. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    Cheers Jm.

    Yep, I guess you're right :( :)

    When you type the : and the ), don't add anything else - no inverted commas, etc. Also, no space between them ;)
  18. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    :) No. still can't seem to get the hang of it, it must be the PC i'm using - it just made me spell something wrong on another thread and that got me into trouble!

    I'm off down the pubic for a pint . .

    Cheers Dev.
  19. Joatmojo

    Joatmojo New Member

    Oh! I did it :)

    Now I am off down the pub!

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