Whether you are thinking about replacing your roof entirely or simply upgrading the roof you already have with new features, keeping energy efficiency in mind could save you a great deal of money down the road. There are many benefits to both you and the environment when you choose to update your home with a sustainable roof. There are also many sustainable options available. You can select features to bring in natural light to your home and eliminate the constant need for electric light, and living in a warm climate, you can select features to naturally keep your home temperature controlled.
You can opt for an entirely new style of roof to help keep energy costs low, or you can simply add on new features to the roof you already have. When you choose to install or upgrade to a sustainable roof, not only will you be helping the environment, but you will be using less energy and saving your money every month.
Sustainable Roof Options
There are a number of ways that cool roofs that can be developed into any type of roof, made from most materials—choose the one that works best for you to save a bundle. Some of the most popular sustainable roof options include:
- Installing a cool roof, or re-painting with cool roof coats
- Light colored shingles
- Installing a skylight
- Installing solar tubes
Regardless of which type of sustainability you opt for, you can rest assured knowing that you can save money, and the environment.
Cool Roof Coats
Cool roof coating is typically a paint-like substance that can be applied to the surface of your existing roof. This transforms the usually dark covering of your roof, which is a magnet to heat from the sun, into a white or lighter color to avoid the excess heat. Cool roof coating is an excellent way to save money on more than just your energy bill.
While this method is sure to save you a bundle by keeping the sun’s heat from thoroughly absorbing into your roof, experts say it is likely that coating will also make your roof last longer. Cool roof coatings will help your roof resist damage from water and the intense heat of the sun, so it will take longer for it to need immediate replacement.
Additionally, you may be eligible for a rebate from the government to reward your home’s energy efficiency with cool roof coating—check EnergyStar’s database to find out. This option is usually best for solid roofs made from metal or similar material, rather than shingles—but if you like the look of shingles, there is also a sustainable option for your taste as well.
Light Colored Shingles
Though sustainability is one of many factors when it comes to choosing a roof color, it is wise to consider the potential savings that you will enjoy when you select a lighter shade of shingle. Lighter shingles help your home’s efficiency the same way that cool roof coating does—the lighter the surface, the less energy will be absorbed from the sun.
Shingles are traditionally a dark asphalt material, which is the most likely surface to attract intense and relentless heat from the sun on a hot day. Choosing a lighter color of shingle will provide your home with a new and unique aesthetic while helping keep the energy costs of your home lower. The less heat absorbed by your roof, the cooler your home will be, and the less you will spend on your air conditioning bill.
This simple superficial alteration will have a major effect on your monthly bills, so consider lighter shingles if you are planning for a new sustainable roof.
If you’re satisfied with the efficiency you are deriving from your existing roof, the addition of a skylight may be just the thing to help you save money while adding an interesting new design element to your home. A skylight is basically a window set into your ceiling to allow natural light in. Not only is it a great design feature, but it is also an excellent way to improve the sustainability of your home from top to bottom.
For example, with a skylight, you can easily reduce the amount you spend on electric lighting every month in any given room, as natural light is a much more efficient alternative. Skylights are notorious for leaking or similar problems as the age, so it is crucial to select a trustworthy roofing contractor for installation to avoid these problems down the road.
A solar tube is basically an alternative to a skylight that you may opt for to combat design issues with your roof or home. Unlike the traditionally square skylight that allows light to directly enter your home, the light in a solar tube typically travels from your roof through some type of tubing, and then acts as a light to any room, regardless of the space that sits above it.
Along with the benefits of this type of sustainable roof, a major benefit of solar tubes are the endless opportunities for design. These can be a much more stylish alternative to a skylight, since there is more freedom to alter the light before it enters the room. However, the benefits to your wallet are just the same—more solar light mean less burden on your electricity bill every month.
There is a myriad of benefits to installing a sustainable roof, or accessories that improve the energy efficiency of your home. These decisions can have a positive impact on your community and your environment, while providing you with unique and rarely encountered design options that enhance your quality of life.
However, perhaps the biggest draw to these benefits is the potential financial savings each month. From improving the durability of your roof to saving on your monthly air conditioning or electricity bills, the numerous benefits are a reminder of why a sustainable roof is an absolute must. You can save enormous amounts every month by making simple decisions to greatly improve the functionality of your roof.
These decisions may not be something you think about on a daily basis. However, a little consideration and a small investment can make a large difference down the road. Consider changing up your roof’s color, or adding touches of the outdoors with skylights or solar tubes—you will find yourself with a generous amount of savings every month!