Some homeowners automatically disapprove of having trees near the house. And while it's true that trees can constitute a hazard or a nuisance (some more than others), the shade they provide can actually be quite beneficial as well. But if you still don't want to deal with trees (or if you don't have trees and don't have time to grow them), you should still consider shading your roof with a shade cloth or sail or perhaps a rooftop garden. Here are three reasons that shading your roof can be a useful activity.
1. Helps roof last longer
Your roof is probably made of asphalt shingle, the ubiquitous material you normally see on residential roofs. And if it is, chances are it's a dark color, which means it absorbs a lot of energy from the sun. Both light and thermal energy (heat) can be absorbed into asphalt shingle, causing its temperature to skyrocket daily. The heat will seep out at night before the cycle starts up all over again the next day. These extreme temperature differences can cause what's known as thermal shock, which means that the shingles can't expand and contract quickly enough to keep up with all the temperature changes. This results in tension within the shingle material, which can cause buckling and cracking. If you shade your roof, it won't be able to absorb so much light from the sun, meaning it will be able to last longer with fewer repairs.
2. Reduces wear on AC unit
The more heat your roof absorbs and transmits to the interior of your house, the harder your AC unit will have to work. This often results in a unit that runs nonstop during hot summer days, instead of resting periodically as it's designed to do. This overwork may cause the unit to freeze up, a condition which can cause compressor failure if not remedied in time, or it may just cause the unit to wear out faster. Regardless, the choice to shade your roof can take help de-stress the unit as well as the roof itself.
3. Saves energy
If the AC unit doesn't run as often, that means it's not using as much energy. This can translate into a considerable percentage of savings on the cooling portion of your energy bill. You can save even more by shading sunny windows with awnings and planting vines on outdoor trellises to shade the walls of your house.
These benefits provide not only increased convenience and comfort, but also energy savings that will help both your budget and the environment. If you're thinking of replacing your roof soon, another way you can reap all these benefits is by installing a cool-colored and eco-friendly roofing material. Contact a business, such as Drew Green Heating & Cooling, for more information.