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Raise the Roof for the Environment!

Raise the Roof for the Environment! By Laura Horwitz
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Did you know that the color of your roof can actually deplete the ozone layer? If you're undergoing roofing repairs or doing some remodeling anyway, consider talking to a roofing contractor about making your home more environmentally friendly.

Cooler Colors Mean Cooler Temperatures

Jeff Luvall, a senior research scientist at NASA, studied the effect of color on temperatures. On a sunny day, a shady, light-colored sidewalk reached 70 degrees. The dark asphalt street next to it reached 123 degrees. Imagine what that enormous temperature difference can mean when applied to the roof of your home!

Asking your roofing contractor to install a light-colored roof is an important step in helping the environment. The light color reflects the sun's heat, keeping the house and the area around it cooler. This in turn helps cut down on the amount of air conditioning you need. While it may not seem like your air conditioning use can make much of a difference, consider that cooling homes costs $40 billion a year and uses 1/6 of the total electrical power in the U.S.

Save Money and the Environment with New Roofing Technology

If you're doing some major remodeling and installing a new roof, definitely talk to your contractor about some of the new roofing materials that are available. Many have light, reflective materials coated in polyurethane foam, which are sprayed with an acrylic coating that has UV-blocking pigments. If everyone updated their roofs in this way, major cities could save $10-$15 million a year in cooling costs and both ozone damage and air pollution could be significantly reduced. These roofs also last longer than a conventional roof, cutting down on landfill waste.

But you don't even need to install a new roof to start using this technology--special coatings and sprays can be added to your existing roof. Talk to your roofing contractor about going green today, and start saving money on your air conditioning bills and save the planet as well.


HGTV, Earth Friendly: Cool Roofs

About the Author
Laura Horwitz has worked as a freelance writer and researcher for five years in both London and the US. She had a monthly landscaping and tips column for the Sussex County magazine RH Review, and her articles have also appeared in Film Focus, 6 Degrees Film, and BizBash magazine.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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