1 Helpful?

Can a New Roof or Debris from the old roof make you sick?

When the roofers tore off our roof, the furnace in our attic and the attic did not get covered properly. Point being there was 100 year old shingles (2 layers of wood shake and 3 layers of asphalt), wood , dust and who knows what else and what kind of shingles they were. When the debris was cleaned out by my husband he looked black as night from the asphalt dust.When I turned on our ac , a horrible smell came through the vents and we had to turn it off and air out the upstairs. Since then, we have had it on and off only when necessary and for short periods due to the smell, but we all sleep upstairs and its about 83 with the ac off.
I am the only one in my family with allergies and my throat is burning, nausea and sinus issues.Now one of my older kids is sick and saying their throat burns when the vent above the bed comes on. I have a smaller child getting sinus problems and feeling sick.
More info that may help:
The upstairs ac/furnace is mounted to the attic floor and return air vent is in the hallway ceiling. It is an unfinished attic with fiberglass insulation between the joists.
My house was built in 1902 . We have 2 units for heating/cooling. One upstairs and 1 down.
Originally, there were no vents on the roof, only a louvered vent on the side of the attic wall.
The roofer installed 6 small vents on the roof for ventilation and the only appliance that runs on gas is my downstairs furnace which is vented directly through the basement wall.
Any help would be appreciated. Thankyou

Asked by Misty Wayne
Posted Jul 24, 2011 3:01 AM ET


2 Answers

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

It's certainly possible that your attic ductwork is leaky, and that the return ductwork in the attic is sucking in asphalt dust.

Asphalt dust is definitely an irritant and could be causing the symptoms you are describing.

You should get a home performance contractor to perform a Duct Blaster test to test the tightness of your ductwork. And you should hire someone to seal all of the joints in your ductwork with mastic.

Answered by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor
Posted Jul 24, 2011 8:54 AM ET



Answered by Misty Wayne
Posted Jul 24, 2011 10:34 AM ET

Other Questions in GBA Pro help

Struggling with how to use foam on walkout over Canadian shield zone 7

In Green building techniques | Asked by tim brown | Aug 18, 15

Anyone familiar with Insultex house wrap?

In Green products and materials | Asked by Marcus Sheffer | Jul 31, 15

How is thermal bridging prevented?

In General questions | Asked by S. Schneider | Oct 5, 15

Solar hot water system with oil heat, one hot water tank or two?

In Mechanicals | Asked by Audrey Considine | Oct 5, 15

Wood burning stove below - what to do?

In General questions | Asked by Mary Schwaba | Oct 6, 15
Register for a free account and join the conversation

Get a free account and join the conversation!
Become a GBA PRO!