What a Roof Says About Your Home

Did you ever look at a house and notice something was not quite right? Check beyond the walls, the windows, the doors? Yes, there it is: the roof. A roof is not only a crucial part of a home that protects your whole property, but also a unique, exclusive and very visible area of your home. Once you have made your choice it can add beauty and value to your property, or in the other hand, if it is not the right one decrease significantly its value and curve appeal.

There are so many options for roofing materials in the market right now that it is hard sometimes to decide what is the perfect option for you. First of all, check the style of your home; imagine how you would like it to be. Then, consult with a professional (roofing contractor, general contractor, designer or architect) to see what roofing materials are suitable for your home’s structure and climate area. After that, you will have narrowed a good amount of product options and you are ready to make a decision!

From the popular shingles, to the metal roof, going through roof tiles in concrete or clay, creating your roof is a matter of budget, taste and investment opportunity. How would your roof look in the next 30, 50 years? What kind of roofing solution does your property need?

Prices are usually a determinant factor, but it is wise to think in the long-term costs. Asphalt shingles for example need to be replaced sooner than roofing tiles. They tend to develop mold or mildew (black stains) and do not provide insulation to the home. They absorb a lot of the sun energy, making a home very hot in summer time (which means more energy consumption – more dollars in electrical bills!). But also have a nice variety of colors, some people are used to them, are easy to install and do not require a strong structure to be installed.

Roofing tiles are (depending on the style) a little more up in the price level, but they have many advantages: they provide natural insulation (specially the high profiles like barrel or Spanish S) to your roof. Most of the manufacturers offer at least 50 year warranties, and the finish on the roof can be exquisite. Clay roof tiles for example have the ability to maintain its color over time. Clay is a natural element that is very well known to endure the test of time (just take a look at historic buildings and architecture in Europe). Some manufacturers offer wide variety of colors, and also energy efficient roof tiles. Besides this, roof tiles protect the underlayment prolonging even more the life of your roof. You can do blends, create your unique design and add a significant value to your property.

The decision is always yours. My suggestion is that you go for the style that best suites your dreamed home or your financial goals. Your roof job should not be a deliberated decision, because usually what it seems cheap in the beginning will cost you more in the long term.

Commercial Roofing: The Benefits of Green Roof Systems

The green movement spawned a new kind of roofing system that combines soil, plants, and other natural elements to form a rooftop ecosystem. Popular in many areas, green commercial roofing systems (a.k.a. natural systems) are quickly becoming the preferred alternative to conventional systems that do not weather well, and saddle building owners with high roofing repair bills. If you intend to implement a green roof, below are seven reasons to move forward with your plans:

Improved Storm Water Management

Green systems improve storm water management by storing water in the substrate, where it is absorbed by plants, and then returned to the atmosphere by transpiration and evaporation. By retaining storm water, a natural roof can help extend the lifespan of drainage systems by reducing the volume of water they receive. Research shows that a natural system can retain up to ninety percent of the rain that falls on them.

Reduced Ambient Heat

In the summer, a roof can be a major source of unwanted heat; as it absorbs sunlight, it produces heat energy that is transferred to the interior of the building. Natural systems prevent this from happening by absorbing sunlight without transferring it to the interior. Research shows that a natural roof can reduce the demand for air conditioning by up to seventy-five percent.

Improved Energy Efficiency

The more insulation its roof contains, the less heat a building loses in the winter, and a natural roof serves as an extra layer of insulation. If your building’s annual utility bill is too high, implementing a green system can help bring it back under control.

Reduced Repairs

Because natural systems are “self-sustaining,” they typically require fewer repairs than conventional commercial roofing. If you need to save money on roofing repair, implementing a natural system can help you do it.

Improved Building Value

At a time when eco friendly buildings are preferred over buildings that use conventional technology, installing a green roof can increase the value of a building to potential buyers. A green roof can also increase the real estate value of a building by improving its energy efficiency.

Attractive to Employees

In urban environments where outdoor greenery is scarce, buildings that have a natural roof can help companies attract and retain employees. According to research, a green roof can make employees easier to recruit and reduce employee turnover. If you need to reduce the cost of recruiting or training new employees, implementing a green roof can help.

Noise Reduction

Depending on their construction, green roofs can reduce outside noise by up to 50 decibels. The interiors of urban buildings are prone to an influx of low frequency noise caused by transport systems, automobiles, and industrial work. Green systems excel at providing a barrier to this noise.

Conclusion

If you need a commercial roofing system, implementing a natural system may be the best option. In addition to improving the aesthetics of your building, a green roof can improve storm water management, reduce ambient heating, improve energy efficiency, reduce the cost of roofing repair, improve building value, attract employees, and reduce noise.

What You Need to Know About Green Roofs

The global impact of climate change has created an age of environmentalism where new technologies are constantly being developed to limit the negative impact we have had on the world around us. It should come as no surprise that these technologies have been utilized in a wide range of industries including home building and roofing. For example, a growing interest in green roofs represent an alternative that is ecologically advanced compared to traditional roofing systems.

This unique type of roof represents a system that involves optimal waterproofing, a root repellant system, a drainage system, filter cloth, and growing medium for plants and vegetation. Green roofs are flexible and versatile, and while some may be modular with all the basic elements already prepared in movable components, they may also be a fixed structure that represents a contained green space on top of a home or building. Essentially, a green roof is one that is at least partially covered with vegetation that is planted over a waterproof membrane, root barrier, and drainage and irrigation systems.

While relatively new to the North American builder, green roofs are very well-established in Europe. As such, it important to disseminate the benefits; and we should also encourage governments to promote the use of these systems through grant or tax incentives as well as education.

There are multiple benefits to green roofs including aesthetic and environmental benefits. First of all, most look very attractive. While somewhat more costly than traditional roofing types, they are an easy and effective method for making urban spaces more beautiful. Moreover, they are a sustainable investment opportunity that helps to improve many aspects of the environment besides its aesthetic. Green roofs contribute to waste diversion as they improve the lifespan of roofing membranes while also utilizing recycled materials for the growing medium. In addition, they have positive impacts on the lifespan of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems by reducing heat loss/gain in buildings and the need for excess heating or cooling.

Another important benefit relates to stormwater management. Water is stored in the substrate of the roof where it is ultimately used by the plants and returned to the atmosphere via transpiration and evaporation. Green roofs can retain 70-90% of precipitation in summer and 25-40% in winter. Plus, while retaining rainwater, these roofs moderate the temperature of the water and filters water runoff. This means that less stormwater is taxing sewers, and the stormwater that enters the sewers is also cleaner.

Green roofs also help to improve the air quality in a city. The plants found on them capture pollutants and filter noxious gases while taking CO2 from the atmosphere and replacing it with oxygen. Ultimately, green roofs are a great way to improve our lives while also improving the environment.