When talking about being green, saving the planet, and also saving a bit of money on the power bill, we tend to think of the little things we can do to help.
Make sure the lights are off when we’re not using them, put the fridge at a reasonable temperature (and close the door), turn off the TV when it isn’t being watched, unplug appliances you don’t use that often, etc.
However, it’s easy to forget that through some simple roofing changes, we can vastly reduce our bills and save energy on heating and cooling, the real power-vampires draining away our paycheck.
But what kind of roofing materials and roofing system should a home owner be looking for if they’re interested in sustainability and green roofing (as well as saving a few dollars on your power bill)?
Luckily, there are a few options for a number of budgets. Let’s dive in, shall we?
The term “green roofing” doesn’t just mean “roofing that’s good for the environment.” It refers specifically to covering a roof (in part or in whole) with vegetation and plant cover.
This isn’t generally used for a traditional slope-roofed detached house. Instead, green roofing is best used with flat roofs with some kind of lip – the kind most often found in commercial buildings.
For business owners, or employees who want to suggest a cost-cutting measure to a higher-up, consider green roofing. A garden planted on the roof not only saves money on power and keeps the building naturally cooler, it also could provide employees with a stress-reducing place to hang out for breaks and lunches.
Plus, its sustainability means that if more roof coverage is needed, it’s possible to just grow more plants!
A cool roof is a roof that naturally repels sunlight on its own, thus reducing the need for air conditioning.
There are a few types of cool roofs. The first is “reflective,” and makes use of shiny, mirror-like materials to redirect the light (and thus the heat) away from a home.
There are often made of metal shingles, often steel, that appear to be normal clay shingles. These metal shingles also come in a multitude of colors and styles, many of them designed to mimic the look of things like clay, jade, and stone.
The second type simply uses light-color materials to decrease light absorption in the roof.
Consider this: most homes and buildings have black roofs. Black absorbs heat more than any other color. Ergo, a roof with a white or very light gray finish can create a massive difference in light absorption and refraction, which will make the house cooler over time.
We’ve all seen solar panels on the roofs of many homes and businesses these days, and it may be time to consider sustainable roofing for any space.
As opposed to some of these other materials, solar panels reduce anyone’s power bill coming and going. While other solutions mentioned above keep some of the heat away, solar panels also turn that heat directly into power.
So, not only would a homeowner be spending less on cooling, they’re also spending less in general because of energy credits.
Replacing or augmenting the roof with solutions like green roofing, cool roofs, and solar panels can drastically reduce energy costs.
It can also provide an owner with a sense of pride and community knowing they’ve done everything they can to not only lower the energy use of themselves and their area, but that they’ve also made their own carbon footprint just a little bit smaller.osts. It can also provide an owner with a sense of pride and community knowing they’ve done everything they can to not only lower the energy use of themselves and their area, but that they’ve also made their own carbon footprint just a little bit smaller.
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