Frequently Asked Questions About Cool Roofs

If it is time to re-roof your home, you may be looking at the various roof options available to you. Roofing options are constantly changing and evolving, so the options available to you now may be different than what was available the last time you re-roofed your home. One of the options that is becoming more and more popular with homeowners is a cool roof, also occasionally referred to as a white roof. Learning about this option will help you decide if it may be a contender for your new roof. Here are a few frequently asked questions you may have about a cool roof if you don't know much about them.

What is a Cool Roof?

A cool roof is a roof made from reflective materials that reflect sunlight. This helps the roof and the building below the roof to stay cooler. This roof is occasionally referred to as a white roof because the reflective materials used to reflect sunlight are typically white or silver in color. However, they don't have to be white or light in color to reflect sunlight. Many cool roofs are made from dark materials as well. Shingle, tile modified bitumen, metal, spray foam and built-up roofs can all be coated or glazed with a reflective material, turning them into a cool roof.

What Are the Benefits to a Cool Roof?

There are many benefits to a cool roof, which is why they are becoming so popular with homeowners. Taking the time to learn about these benefits will help you to decide if this roofing type may benefit you. Some of the benefits of a cool roof include:

Longer Roof Lifespan

One of the benefits to a cool roof is that it tends to last longer than a regular roof. The lifespan of the roof varies based on many factors, including the type of roof and the weather conditions it is exposed to. However, a traditional roof's lifespan can be shortened by the heat. This doesn't occur with a cool roof as it reflects the sunlight that causes it to heat up, helping it to last longer.

Reduced Energy Usage

Another benefit to a cool roof is that it can help you reduce your energy usage in the summer months. The sun can heat your home up. But a cool roof reflects the sunlight, helping to keep your home cooler. This means you spend less energy cooling your home. This also helps to keep spaces where an air conditioner is not present, such as your garage, cooler.

Decrease Your Neighborhood's Urban Heat Island Effect

A neighborhood with asphalt roads, concrete sidewalks and traditional roofs can be warm because these elements hold heat in from the sun. This is known as the Urban Heat Island Effect. When you use a cool roof, you are doing your part to begin to minimize this effect. If enough homes and buildings in a neighborhood do it, the temperatures in your area may slightly decrease.

Can You Use a Cool Roof in Any Environment?

Cool roofs can be installed in different climates and environments. However, because these roofs reflect sunlight, they may slightly increase a home's heating costs during the winter. Generally speaking, this cost is negated by the energy savings that were achieved in the summer. But you need to do your research based on your home's heating and cooling costs, and the temperatures in your area, to ensure this type of roof makes sense for your home based on the climate you reside in.

Cool roofs are becoming popular with homeowners as more homeowners look to go green. Learning about this type of roof and visiting the websites of local roofing experts, like, can help you make an educated and informed decision as to whether this roof type is right for you.