How Sustainable Roofing Can Help Decrease Your Energy Costs
The cost of everything seems to be skyrocketing these days. Gas, food, consumer goods and energy costs are reaching higher levels every day. Because of this, people seeking a new roofing system are focusing on choosing materials and solutions that can cut their energy costs. By choosing sustainable, energy efficient roofing materials, you’ll stay cooler on hot days, and warmer on those cool days.
What Is Sustainable Roofing?
There are a few different ways that a roof can be sustainable. One of these is in the choice of materials. Certain materials that are sustainable or abundant earth materials can be chosen for shingles and other components, rather than those based on fossil fuels.
Another way that roofing can be sustainable is in the manufacturing process itself. Some factories have been designed or converted to have a reduced impact on the environment, and a smaller carbon footprint. By favoring products made in a sustainable way, the hope is that the rising temperature of our planet can be curbed, and the most severe impacts of climate change can be avoided.
Finally, the type of roofing system that a property owner chooses can be sustainable in that it is highly energy efficient. This means that it reduces the temperature rise inside the structure on hot days, and cuts down on warm air loss during cold days.
One thing’s for sure. The right roofing choice may mean a substantial savings on electricity, gas and other HVAC expenses. Give Horizon a call to go through all your options for choosing a new roof, or making smaller changes to your existing roof and start saving today.
Keeping Cool By Reflecting Sunlight
One easy way to reduce energy costs by choosing sustainable roofing is to look for materials that reflect the hot rays of the sun. This is called a “cool roof.” More and more property owners are seeking cool roof materials as a way to live sustainably and reduce their energy costs.
Cool roofs aren’t just beneficial to you as a property owner, they benefit the entire area by reducing the urban heat island effect, where man-made materials retain solar heat at night, making the entire area hotter. If you’ve ever spent time on the Las Vegas Strip after a triple digit day, you know what that heat island feels like!
If you are choosing shingles, brighter colors can achieve the highest level of reflectivity. In some cases, they can reflect back 90 percent of solar energy. That doesn’t mean you need a white roof, however. Many other colors are available that still have a great level of sun reflection. This is achieved through the use of special pigments that can reject light in the near infrared segment of the light spectrum.
In higher pitched roof situations, cool roofing material is available in a wide range of colors for asphalt, wood or metal shingles. Clay has been chosen as a cool roof material for centuries. Polymer coatings can also be applied sometimes which help boost the reflection index of the roofing materials.
In low sloped roof situations, single ply, built up, modified bitumen and spray polyurethane foam roofs often come in colors that are highly reflective and can be a great choice.
Remember that algae and moss growth along with other debris can reduce the reflectivity of your roof, and reduce the effectiveness of your cool roofing system. Make sure to periodically have your roof inspected by a qualified roofer like Horizon. We can apply special solutions that inhibit growth of things like algae and mold for years to come.
The Boral Roofing Cool Roof System: An Innovative Solution
One of the more contemporary options is called the Boral Cool Roof System. This system uses some innovative techniques that elevate shingles to make sure that air flows through. By reducing nailing penetration, they reduce or eliminate nails.
Boral’s system allows for a high level of air flow. Cooler air travels up through the air spaces, displacing the hot, stagnant air. This highly efficient approach reduces heat build up on top of the roof. In independent tests, the Boral Roof could lead to a 22% savings on yearly heating and cooling costs compared to a more traditional asphalt shingle system.
Other Ways To Make Your Roof Sustainable
Reflection and airflow are just 2 ways that a roof can be sustainable and energy efficient. We call a roof a “roofing system” because it is made up of several different components, and each one of them carries with it the potential to save you money in energy costs.
For instance, insulating attic spaces with fiberglass or mineral wool can help keep the temperature from getting too hot when it’s sunny, and prevent warm air from escaping during the winter.
Spray polyurethane foam is an “Energy Star” approved material. It’s more effective than mineral wool, and is impervious to moisture absorption, meaning it will never harbor mold or mildew. Others opt for rigid foam insulation boards.
Is It Time For A New Roof?
Deciding what time is right to replace your roof is a difficult decision. Many people find themselves in a situation where their existing roof is in good repair, and has several years of life left in it.
Others may be reaching the end of a roof’s typical lifespan, or are deciding between the expense of major repairs versus just getting a new roof and installing a cool roof at that point.
Sometimes, there’s a middle ground. Different types of roof coatings can make a big impact on sustainability and energy savings. This may allow some property owners to get the full lifespan out of their current roof, which still reduces their monthly energy costs.
Which approach is right for you? Schedule a roofing consultation with Horizon Roofing. We can inspect your current roof and break down the costs and benefits of replacement, and how it might impact your energy costs.
Horizon Roofing – serving the Orange County, CA area – is your reliable local roofing contractors. We specialize in residential roofing and commercial roofing and have been in the industry for over a decade. We have excellent reviews and look forward to serving your need.