More homeowners are becoming cognizant of their impacts on the environment. From opting for low-flow toilets and pipes as a way to save water to participating in local recycling programs, these small steps can make a big impact.
One major source of environmental strain is the roof. From the materials to their insulation effectiveness, the roof you choose can help your hurt the environment. Here are three things to consider whether you are repairing your roof or replacing it entirely.
Invest in a roof that lasts for decades.
One of the best things you can do to help the environment is to cut back on waste. When fewer materials need to be created, you can help preserve natural resources and help plants and animals that rely on those resources to live. If you want to invest in an environmentally-friendly roof, get one that will last.
Additionally, investing in a long-lasting roof keeps waste out of landfills. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 569 million tons of construction and demolition (C&D) debris was generated in 2017. The worst offenders were large, bulky demolition materials like concrete, plastics, and asphalt from the roofing. Asphalt shingles are some of the least durable on the market, meaning they need to be removed and replaced frequently.
A quality roof doesn’t necessarily need to be an expensive one. Ted Halstead of the Climate Leadership Council explained how climate solutions need to be affordable for working-class Americans in his TED Talk. Consider looking for metal roofing options or slate roofing alternatives, which look nice but have the durability you crave.
Choose roofing materials that reflect the sun.
The roofing materials you choose can increase or decrease your electricity bills, which can directly impact your carbon footprint. When the sun beats down on your roof in the summer, the rays will either be absorbed or reflected. When they are absorbed, they get hot and tend to warm your house, increasing your air conditioning bills. However, reflective shingles bounce the rays back, reducing your need to cool your home.
There are several modern shingle brands that will reflect the sun’s rays. Along with opting for these shingles, also inspect your home’s insulation – particularly in the attic. You want to lessen the amount of indoor air that escapes while preventing the outdoor air from seeping in. With this, you will feel more comfortable in your home and lessen your environmental impact.
Consider buying solar panels or solar shingles.
Once you reduce your energy needs with better insulation, look into switching to clean energy with solar panels. Many solar panels are developed to sit on top of your roof. They collect the sun’s rays and provide energy to your house.
Before you invest in this energy, make sure you get your roof inspected to know if it can handle the weight and size of solar panels. Consider calling Buccos Roofing, a local roofer Pittsburgh, to sign off on the health of your roof.
As an alternative to panels, you may want to get solar shingles that replace the roofing of your home. In 2019, Elon Musk at Tesla debuted solar glass roof tiles that are meant to replace standard tiles on a house. These shingles are certainly an investment. They cost more than traditional panels but can increase your home’s value and significantly reduce (if not eliminate) your electric bills.
As more homes invest in solar energy, panels become easier to find and cheaper. You can lead the way toward clean energy through roof-based panels.
If society is going to reduce the impacts of man-made climate change, then everyone needs to work together. Improving your home’s roof might not seem like much, but if everyone took the steps you did, there could be a hugely beneficial impact.