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As the world shifts towards environmentally friendly practices, it is important to consider the impact our choices have on the environment. One area that often gets overlooked is the roof over our heads. Traditional roofing materials such as asphalt shingles or clay tiles are not eco-friendly and require nonrenewable resources for their production and pose a significant threat to the environment. Eco-friendly roofing, on the other hand, aims to reduce the carbon footprint of the roof while still protecting the home.
What Makes a Roof Eco-Friendly
There are four main factors that help determine if a roofing material or option is eco-friendly or not. These include:
1. Energy efficiency
3. Recyclability and reusability
4. Protects the environment by omitting the use of toxic chemicals
Eco-Friendly Roofing Options
Here are the most common and popular options for eco-friendly roofing. It’s important to note that not all roofing options are available in all areas and not all roofing options are ideal for all climates. It’s key to communicate with your roofer to explore the options that are suitable for your climate and available in your area.
1. Solar Roofing – GAF Timberline Solar Shingles
Solar roofing is incredibly eco-friendly. Not only does it reduce your dependence on traditional energy sources, but it also reduces the carbon footprint of your home. Solar roofing can reduce your energy bills by up to 30%, and in some states, excess energy generated can be sold back to the grid. GAF Timberline Solar Shingles are an excellent example of eco-friendly solar roofing options.
2. Metal Roofing
Another eco-friendly roofing option with a longer lifespan than traditional roofs is metal roofing. Metal roofing is made with recyclable materials and is itself recyclable, making it a truly sustainable option. In addition, metal roofing reflects heat, reducing the amount of energy needed for cooling. Metal roofing can last up to 50 years (or more!) and requires little maintenance.
3. Concrete Roof Shingles
Concrete roofing tiles are an excellent eco-friendly choice because they are made from recyclable materials and can be reused. They also reflect heat rather than absorb it, making them a great option for warmer climates. Concrete roofing tiles are highly durable and can last for over 30 years.
4. Sustainably Sourced Slate Shingles
Slate shingles are a highly regarded roofing option, and when sourced sustainably, they can be an eco-friendly option as well. Sustainably sourced slates reduce the impact that quarrying has on the environment. Slate shingles also have a lifespan of over a century, and they can be recycled at the end of their lifespan.
5. Cool Roofing – GAF Timberline CS Shingles
Cool roofing is designed to reflect sunlight and heat, which can help reduce heating and cooling bills. GAF Timberline CS Shingles not only reflect heat but also use recycled materials, making them an eco-friendly option. These shingles also meet Energy Star requirements, which help to reduce the carbon footprint of your home.
6. Recycled Asphalt Shingles
Recycled asphalt shingles are made from post-consumer waste and scrap shingles, creating an environmentally friendly material. They are also less expensive than other roofing materials, making them an appealing option for those on a budget. Recycled asphalt shingles can last up to 20 years.
7. Living Roofs – Rooftop Gardens
A living roof, or a rooftop garden, provides a space for vegetation to grow on your roof. Not only is this aesthetically pleasing, but it also has many benefits. Living roofs can reduce heating and cooling costs by providing insulation while improving air quality. They can also reduce stormwater runoff, which helps to protect local ecosystems.
Choosing an eco-friendly roofing option can be a daunting task, but it is well worth the effort. These roofing options not only reduce your dependence on non-renewable resources but can also help to protect local ecosystems. Be sure to do your research and consult with our roofing professionals to choose the best option for your home and area. At MD Roofing, we value eco-friendly practices whenever possible. Why? Because we’re not just your roofer, we’re your neighbor!