Posted on June 5, 2023 by Admin
Energy-efficient roofing with Pitch Gauge
It is no secret that traditional roofing materials like asphalt shingles hold the roofing industry together. An estimate of over 75% of roofs in the US use dark asphalt shingles, but this is changing. As the lifespan of homeowners’ asphalt shingle roofs ends, and they begin to see the long-term benefits of energy-efficient roofing, the appeal of sustainable roofs increases.
What Is Energy-Efficient Roofing?
Sustainable or energy-efficient roofing (sometimes called eco roofing) is any roofing material produced without using up or damaging its original resource. Typically this means roofing materials that are recycled or taken from sustainably-managed sources. The production of sustainable roofing is usually carbon-neutral as well.
In addition, sustainable roofing is often highly reflective and cooling, helping decrease temperatures in the home and reducing energy usage. Some energy-efficient roofs, like green roofs, actually help decrease CO2 levels in the atmosphere via the photosynthesis of plants. Above all, sustainable roofing materials are typically longer-lasting and can be recycled easily, helping to keep roofing materials out of landfills.
Qualities of energy-efficient roofing:
Sustainably sourced or recycled Decreases home temperatures (and energy bill costs) Easily recycledLong-lasting
What Are The Benefits of Energy-Efficient Roofing?
For roofers, the benefits of sustainable roofing are many:
Offering eco-friendly roofing options allows you to differentiate your business from the thousands of other roofing businesses out there. There is a growing demand for sustainable roofing as individuals become more eco-conscious. These individuals tend to be willing to spend a little more money to be eco-friendly.The longer lifespan of sustainable roofs means fewer repairs and maintenance, which means satisfied customers and stellar reviews.Some sustainable roofing types (like metal roofs) are quicker to install than traditional styles and can save time.
For homeowners, the benefits of energy-efficient roofing are mostly monetary:
Energy-efficient roofs help keep energy bills much lower and can offset HVAC use, leading to a longer HVAC lifespan.The long lifespan of eco-friendly roofing means fewer repairs over time and fewer replacements needed, which saves thousands over the years.It can increase your property value.
What Types Of Energy-Efficient Roofing Are There?
We have different types of energy-efficient roofing in the market. Examples are green roofs, solar panels or solar shingle roofs, cool roofs, metal roofs, and more. Regardless, the endless eco-friendly roofing options allow homeowners to choose a roof that satisfies their sustainability goals and aesthetic needs.
What Are The Features of Each Sustainable Roofing Type?
Each kind of sustainable roof has specific features, pros, and cons.
1. Cool roofs:
This option improves energy efficiency by reflecting a greater amount of sunlight compared to traditional roofs. By effectively reducing surface temperatures, cool roofs minimize heat transfer into the building, resulting in a more comfortable living environment throughout the year. Furthermore, they contribute to significant energy savings and alleviate the strain on HVAC systems, reducing energy bills. Explore the benefits of cool roofs for a sustainable and cost-effective home
Longer lifespan of 15-30 years vs. 10 years for conventional roofs
Mitigates the accumulation of heat in urban areas.
Diminish surface temperatures by as much as 50 degrees.
Reduces energy demand
Extends roof life by decreasing heat-related damage
Can be susceptible to mold in high humidity environments
It can increase the need for heating during cold months
High initial installation costs
Not suited for cooler climates
2. Green roofs
Green roofs are rooftops adorned with various forms of vegetation, including bushes, grass, trees, and other greenery. They typically are made of several layers, including a waterproofing layer, a drainage layer, and a vegetation layer, amongst others. Despite their high installation and maintenance costs, they are considered the most complex yet efficient type of energy-saving roofing. Green roofs offer additional advantages to buildings, including boosting property value, lowering roof temperatures by 30-40%, cutting heat transfer by 72%, and reducing stormwater flow by up to 65%. Summing up, these are just a few benefits of green roofs.
Can double or triple the lifespan of a rooftop, up to 40 years
Increases biodiversity by attracting wildlife
Aesthetics increases property value
Reduces roof surface temperatures by 30-40%
Reduce noise pollution by 30%
Keeps out heat during cold months and holds onto heat during cooler months
Can reduce city-wide temperatures by 5 degrees
Reduce stormwater runoff by 65%
Very high initial installation cost
Needs maintenance often, typically twice a year
Causes a significant increase in weight load on a roof
3. Solar panels or solar roofs
They can be installed in several ways, from bulkier solar panels to lightweight solar shingles, like the Tesla solar shingles. Solar shingles, although pricier than regular roofs, boast a sleeker design. They provide added installation flexibility, suitable for any roof type. Moreover, they are exceptionally energy-efficient, producing more solar than traditional panels. In some states, you can receive a tax credit for a solar roof installation.
Renewable energy generationEnergy cost savingsEnvironmental benefitsIncreased property valueLong lifespanTax credits
Higher upfront installation costsRequires parts of the existing roof to be removed (for solar shingles)Less efficient in generating energy when compared to solar panels (solar shingles)Limited design and aesthetic options (for some solar shingle systems)Needs compatibility with the roof styleRelies on sunlight to be effective
4. Metal roofs
Metal roofing is a simple, environmentally-friendly roofing option. Similarly to cool roofs, materials used for metal roofing are made to be reflective to bounce the sun’s rays away from home. This helps keep internal temperatures down and decreases the use of a home’s energy to cool down the interior. Like cool roofs, metal roofs repel the sun’s heat, keeping interiors cooler and reducing energy consumption. They are durable, can be made from recyclable materials, and are easily recyclable themselves when they reach the end of their lifespan. Additionally, metal roofs offer quicker installation with a snap lock mechanism.
Long lifespan of 50+ yearsFire, rot, pest, and harsh weather resistantHighly reflectiveMade from recyclablesLightweightLow maintenanceQuick installations
Higher upfront costsNoisy during rain and hail stormsPossible dentingLimited style optionsIt can increase heat during hot months
5. Composite tile or shingle roofs
This refers to roofing tiles/shingles made of a mix of materials, typically including fiberglass, asphalt, recycled plastic, and other sustainable materials. Furthermore, composite roofing offers a lightweight, durable, cost-effective alternative to natural materials. Being synthetic, accordingly, these roofing tiles can mimic various shingle types, including popular designs like cedar split shake and synthetic slate, offering homeowners on a budget a wide range of aesthetic choices.
AffordableIt can also replicate many natural materialsLightweightWind, impact, and fire resistantLow maintenance
Shorter (but still long) lifespanColor fadingVulnerable to severe weatherNot always 100% sustainable
6. Rubber shingle roofs
These are made of recycled tires, rubber, and other recycled plastics. Rubber shingles offer durability and affordability, with a slightly higher cost per square than asphalt shingles. However, they have a significantly longer lifespan, with some manufacturers claiming they can last a lifetime. Like composite tiles, their synthetic base makes it easy to mold them into replicas of other natural roofing materials, like cedar shake tiles. Their makeup makes them certainly resistant to issues that natural roofing materials typically have, such as mold, pests, breaking, fire, and harsh weather conditions.
100% made from recycled tires”Lifetime” lifespanMold, pest, fire, harsh weather, and breaking resistantVersatile style options
Higher initial costColor fadingLimited availability
Turn Your Roofing Business Into A Green Business
When it comes to providing roofing material options for your customers, make sure to keep these energy-efficient options at the top of your list. As sustainability becomes more common in American homes, homeowners are consequently looking for ways to do their part in protecting the environment. They will be happy you introduced them to these money-saving sustainable roofing options.
Establishing yourself as a green roofing business can simultaneously bring a wider customer base. Enhance your roofing business’s sustainability by equipping employees with tools to amplify their eco-friendly practices and minimize waste.
Roofing estimation software companies like Pitch Gauge ensure you properly estimate the amount of roofing material you need, decreasing the waste generated during a roofing installation or update. With the app, you can conveniently order sustainable roofing materials directly from suppliers, simplifying coordination across multiple projects. Additionally, you can use the services of a sustainable dumpster rental company like Sourgum Waste to ensure your roofing waste is recycled properly and avoids landfills when possible. On top of that, for every roofing dumpster you rent, Sourgum Waste plants a tree!
Why Energy-Efficient Roofing?
In conclusion, sustainable roofing has many benefits besides the obvious one of being better for the environment. Sustainable roofing can help homeowners decrease utility bill costs, make their homes more comfortable, increase property values, and in some cases, make homes more aesthetically pleasing. For roofers, eco roofing can identically help you save time on installations, decreasing the need for maintenance and labor costs and adding tremendous value to your business’s reputation.
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