Grand Rapids Roofing: Article About Green Roofing Options
A roofing material that can cut down on power consumption or even just substitute raw materials with recycled components can do wonders for the environment and a homeowner's pocketbook. Be sure to ask a Grand Rapids roofing company about these green roofing options when considering a roofing installation.
One of the best ways to make a roof greener is to build a living roof, which is a rooftop garden that not only keeps the house shaded, allowing a homeowner to pay less on his or her monthly electric bill, but ensures that he or she has plenty of fresh oxygen when stepping outside. While rooftop gardens can be built on virtually any type of roof, they work best on flat roofs and may need extra support to make up for the additional weight of the soil and vegetation, depending on the type of roof a homeowner has installed. It's also worth noting that living roofs require just as much maintenance as vegetation out in the yard, so the homeowner will need reliable access to his or her roof in order to tend to the garden as well as safety rails to ensure he or she doesn't fall off.
A white roof is a less dramatic way to go green that may not cost the homeowner any more than a typical roofing project.
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By purchasing white shingles or other light colored roofing materials, the homeowner's roof will reflect sunlight instead of absorbing it, which will help to cool off the home and help the homeowner spend less on overall cooling costs. However, a white roof will show stains more easily than a dark roof typically would.
Solar panels will help to reduce costs by producing free, clean electricity on an ongoing basis. However, solar panels can cost a lot of money upfront and do require light maintenance over time, so it may take several years before the homeowner sees a return on his or her initial investment. If a homeowner has enough solar panels to produce more energy than he or she uses, the utility company may have to buy the extra electricity, but the rate they pay can vary from region to region.
Another general tip for any construction project is to ask the roofer about using recycled materials. Recycled materials are often cheaper than new materials and help the environment by cutting down on waste as well as byproducts produced in the manufacturing process.