Need a new roof? Consider switching to one of these energy-efficient roofing types…
Would it surprise you to know that in Europe, people would be shocked at the thought of replacing your roof every 10-20 years? Not only are asphalt roofing options inefficient and expensive over your home’s lifetime, but they also contribute large amounts of unnecessary waste to landfills.
Switching to energy-efficient roofing is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, keep your home cool and save energy all at once. If your roof is getting to the point where it needs to be maintained anyway, switching to a more energy-efficient roofing option could turn out to be a lucrative investment.
Here are a few things to consider when choosing an energy-efficient roof:
Rebates and Tax Cuts
Some companies and utility providers may offer rebates on various types of energy-efficient roofing, and some states also offer tax breaks.
The tax incentives vary from state to state. Check with your utility provider about potential rebates. These can go a long way towards offsetting the cost of the roofing.
Different Types of Energy-Efficient Roofs
There are a few different common types of energy-efficient roofs.
- Metal Roofing: Today’s metal roofs come with special reflective coatings that will divert the sun’s rays from your house, effectively keeping your home cooler during the hot summer months. They’re also extremely durable and can survive even in harsh weather conditions such as hurricanes, hail or wind storms. Metal roofs are also naturally fire-resistant, and may qualify you for a break on your homeowner’s insurance (check with your provider). They are also particularly well-suited to use with solar panels – another way to improve your home’s energy efficiency.
- Clay Tiles: Clay tiles aren’t as reflective as metal, but a special coating can be added to increase their heat reflecting capabilities. Clay tiles can often be made in a sustainable manner to help reduce your environmental footprint even further.
- Membrane Roofing: Membrane installation is much easier than the other types and can even be done without a contractor. Unfortunately, the material is much more expensive than other types, which is why membranes are most often used on commercial buildings rather than residential buildings.
Buying An Energy-Efficient Roof
The best way to get top-notch energy-efficient roofs at a good price is to talk to several contractors before making your decision. You may be shocked at the difference in pricing between different providers. (During our recent search for a metal roofing contractor, we got 4 different quotes, two of which were around $10,000 less than the other two!)
Get at least three different bids for the job before you make your pick. Make sure you talk to each contractor about what roof type will work best for your house. Do you get the sense that this contractor is really knowledgeable about energy-efficient roofing types, or do they keep trying to steer you towards a traditional asphalt roof? (We had this experience in one case.) Do they readily offer references?
Remember, doing a roof is a big project! Only hire someone that you really feel you can trust.
Make sure to negotiate a per-job rate rather than a per-hour rate. Per-hour projects almost always go over budget, and some energy-efficient roofing types may take a lot longer to install than others.
Energy-Efficient Roofs: Wrap Up
In summary, getting an energy-efficient roof can be a great way to help conserve energy and save money over the long run. There may be a higher upfront investment, but it’ll more than pay for itself in the long run – especially since you’ll likely never have to replace your roof again! If you’re getting a new roof anyway, seriously consider making the extra initial investment to help your planet and conserve energy with an efficient roof.