From Asphalt Shingles to Zinc Strips

How to Choose a Cooler Roof

If the time has arrived for a new roof installation, then you have several decisions to make before the replacement can begin. One thing you should consider is how you can make your roof cooler. A cool roof doesn't heat up as much in summer, which means your home stays at a more comfortable temperature without the constant need for a running air conditioner. There are a few ways you can make your new roof cooler.

1. Get Reflective Shingles

The roof is exposed to the heat of the sun all day long. One way to minimize heat exposure is to reflect as much of the heat energy away as possible. Reflective shingles are equipped with a coating that reflects solar radiation away from your home. This lowers the temperature on your roof, which then also leads to lower temperatures in your home. If you don't want to install shingles, there are also reflective roofing tiles and reflective metal panels available. The coating doesn't affect the appearance of your roof, either.

2. Consider Color Options

Dark colors can also lead to more heat absorption, which then makes you home warmer. There are also heat sink effects when you have a dark-colored roof—the raised temperature on the roof bleeds out into the surrounding area. This means even your yard will be hotter when you have a dark roof. Instead, opt for lighter colored shingles, tiles, or panels. A light to medium gray, for example, is just as attractive as black but it won't absorb or transfer nearly as much heat.

3. Add More Attic Vents

Although color and reflective coatings can deflect a lot of heat, this does no good if the heat already trapped in your home can't escape. This is where your attic ventilation system comes into play. Cool air moves into the attic via soffit vents in the eaves. This cool air then pushes the hot air out of the roof through rooftop vents located on or near the ridge line or in the gable ends of your roof. A roofer can install additional vents during your replacement, which will then allow for even more hot air to move out of your home.

4. Get New Insulation

Insulation will further minimize the amount of heat transfer into your home. The most effective insulation is that which you install inside of your attic—you just need to make sure it doesn't interfere with the vent system. You can also find roofing panels that are insulated, which will help provide additional exterior protection against the heat.

Contact a roofing contractor in your area to discuss cool options for your roof replacement.