What Are the Top 8 Environmentally-Friendly Roofing Options
It is time for us all to choose the environmentally-friendly option for everything we do. Roofing material choices are no exception. When you are choosing a roof for a new home or replacing your roof on an existing home, think green.
What Are Environmentally Friendly Roofs?
Environmentally friendly roofing materials are those that help homeowners reduce electricity consumption, reduce the use of heating, and are recyclable. Go to https://eriemetalroofs.com/ for information on environmentally friendly roofing materials they may offer. It is important to purchase environmentally friendly roofing materials from a roofing company that uses professional roofing installers to install roofing according to the manufacturer’s directions with no shortcuts.
8 Roofing Options That Are Environmentally Friendly
There are options for homeowners to consider when they are looking for environmentally friendly roofs. Some are old friends and some are newer products. Consider these 8 materials:
1. Cool Roofs. These roofs are becoming more available as more manufacturers add them to their lines. Cool roofing material is topped with a mixture of white glue and white gravel to reflect the sun’s hot rays. This cuts down on the heat entering the home through the roof and decreases the need for air conditioning. This saves energy use.
A cool roof can consist of other materials that are chosen in white or light color. If the roofing material is asphalt shingles, it will still not be recyclable but it will be energy saving because of the sunlight and heat it will reflect. A metal roof in white would be very eco-friendly.
2. Wood Shingles. This old favorite is becoming popular again because of its environmental advantages. Wood shingles are a natural product that will last from 15 to 20 years and is recyclable when it is removed. Wood shingles can also be made from recycled or reclaimed wood. Wood shingles should be purchased from a manufacturer using wood from sustainably managed forests. Wood shingles are flammable and may not be allowed in all areas.
3. Metal Roofing. Metal roofing can be made of recycled metal products and then recycled again is removed from the roof. These roofs last around 50 years reducing the times a home’s roof needs to be replaced. Metal roofs are durable, light-reflective, and energy-saving. Metal roofing material can be used as sheets or as shingles resembling other materials. Metal roofing comes with several different coatings.
A newer form of metal roofing is stone-coated steel tiles. This is an eco-friendly, lighter weight, and more affordable roofing material combining the benefits of steel roofing and stone. These tiles reflect the sun and protect homes from ultraviolet light, cutting down energy costs.
4. Clay Tiles. An old favorite, these tiles are recyclable and have the ability to reflect heat. They are very durable and can last decades. Homeowners using clay tile roofing will save electricity, heating, and cooling expenses. Clay tiles feature an air cushion below the tiles and above them because of their tile shapes. This is an expensive and heavy roofing choice. the roof might need reinforcement to hold the weight.
5. Slate Tiles. These traditional tiles are very durable and can last decades or even centuries. The higher initial cost pays for itself over the decades, A homeowner may even be able to find repurposed or salvaged slate tiles to be even more environmentally friendly. This beautiful roofing material is expensive and heavy. You will need to replace chipped or broken tiles as they happen.
6. Solar Cells In Roofing Materials. This new technology is called building integrated photovoltaic technology. Small solar cells are embedded in traditional roofing materials like metal or shingles. This material is still pretty expensive but it does provide part of the home’s electricity.
7. Roofing Materials with Wind Turbines. This is another new technology where roofing panels have miniature wind turbines embedded in them to make use of the wind blowing over homes. These roofs are not yet providing the primary power source for homes but will augment the electricity the home uses. In the future, they may provide all or most of a home’s electrical needs.
8. Plant Roofs. Green roofs take on a new meaning when a roof consists of a few inches of sealed supporting material and then up to two feet of soil is layered and planted with a habitat of flowers, grass, crops, shrubs, mosses, and other living materials. These roofs tend to be high maintenance but they are very environmentally friendly. These are called horticultural roofs. These roofs are heavy and so a home’s roof may need to be strengthened to handle the load.
There Are More Roofing Choices
There are a few more roofing materials to consider as well. Flat-roofed homes might benefit from a gravel roof consisting of gravel and glue. This roofing material reflects the sun and reduces heat absorption. Rubber roofing can be made from old radial tires making it a recycled material. These reinforced rubber shingles come in different colors and are very durable. These shingles protect homes from heat and also from hail and more extreme weather conditions.
There are new shingles on the market that are made from various recycled materials. They can mimic the look of other materials such as cedar shakes or slate tiles for less money. Many of these new tiles have lifespans of up to 50 years. They offer many sustainable benefits. Current tiles do not come in white so the cooling benefits might not be the best.
When remodeling homes or building new homes, adding roof overhangs may also help save energy and passively cool the home. Deep roof overhangs must be correctly positioned for the most benefit.
There is no one roofing product that is perfect for everyone but there are plenty of good choices on the market right now. When choosing any roofing material, be sure to purchase it from a reputable roofing company that has experience installing that type of roof. Every roof is only as good as the company that installs it. Be sure to get warranties on the material and the labor for the roof. Choose an environmentally friendly roof and reap the benefits for you and for the earth.