Your roof does so much already. It protects you from rain, wind and sun, and it gives you an opportune place for your Christmas lights. Well now’s the time to ask even more of your roof. Do you want your utility bills lowered, or to have a more comfortable interior in your home? If you know a local roofer in Bucks County ask them for some advice.
Using your roof to increase your home energy efficiency will definitely have positive outcomes for you. Now, there are a couple ways to do this, whether your existing roof is in good condition, or if you are planning to have a new one put on soon. Either way, you’ll see some improvements.
The color of the roof, much like the color of your shirt, can affect how hot or cold you are. If you’re about to put on a new one, you probably don’t go with a dark color, especially in warmer climates. A dark roof will conduct even higher temperatures into the house than whatever the temperature is outside.
A lighter color roof can even have some built-in reflective properties to keep the heat at bay. On the other hand, if you live in a very cold climate, there are even some disadvantages to a light color roof It all depends on where you live.
If you can’t change the color of your roof (because, you know, it’s already on your house), there are still some little tricks you can do to make your house more energy efficient. You can add certain coatings to your roof that give it reflective or waterproofing properties. Just look for a “cool roof” coating. These help drive the heat away and, if you’re brave, you can even apply it yourself.
If you’re reading this because you’re ready to put a new roof on the house rather than make updates to the old, then congratulations. Not only are you trying to be environmentally friendly and increase your home energy efficiency, but you’re also about to shell out cash for a new roof, and that’s a big step.
Unfortunately, there’s no one rule of thumb on how to get the most energy efficient roof, because you, dear reader, may live in a different climate than another reader. That is why professionals exist. Simply make it clear you want the most energy efficient option for your roof, even if it costs more (again, congratulations, and the higher price tag will probably pay for itself).
Now there are a few pointers that you want to look for, no matter where you live. Look for reflective properties, similar to above when we talked about reflective coatings on roofs that are already in place. This will be labeled as “solar reflectance” and will be rated on a scale of 0 to 1, with about a hundred decimal degrees in between. The closer you get to .99 or 1.0, the better. If it is labeled as an Energy Star quality roof, the solar reflectance will be .25 or greater (in fact, pretty much any Energy Star rated roof is going to be pretty efficient). Since reflectance can diminish over time from dirt and rain, they also set a scale of .15 after three years.
Emittance, like solar reflectance, is important to your efficiency. It is rated the same way as reflectance, from 0 to 1 with one being the highest. In short, emittance is how well your roof avoids retaining heat.
So if you’re ready for lower bills, a comfier house, and for all of your neighbors to be jealous, improving or replacing your roof might be the way to go.