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Roofing Question

Is there a way to cool down a shed without adding insulation?

I have a shed my little sister wants to turn into a house. The problem is it's about 100 degrees in there, and I don't know how to cool it down. Is there any way to get the temperature lower without adding insulation?

Actually, I don't think insulation would help keep your shed cool during the summertime unless you plan on adding air-conditioning. However, if your sister plans on using the shed during the winter, insulation might provide a bit of a barrier against cold temperatures.

My guess is that the shed is hot for a couple reasons: a lack of interior ventilation, first of all, and secondly, the roofing material is allowing the sun's heat to be transferred inside. I'm not sure how large the shed is or what type of roof it has, but you may want to consider installing a roofing material that reflects away a large percentage of the sun's heat. There are many asphalt shingle manufacturers that offer these types of products. CertainTeed's Landmark Solaris line of shingles are advertised to reduce roof temperatures by as much as 20 percent. GAF's Timberline Cool Series are another option you may wish to consider. There are also metal and synthetic roofing materials that are considered to be "cool roofing" products.

However, installing reflective roofing is only going to do so much as far as reducing the temperature inside the shed if there isn't any air circulation in its interior. There are several options to improve ventilation - and which one to use depends on the building's roof design. If the roof is peaked, you may be able to install a ridge vent at the highest point of the roof and soffit vents at the eaves. A shed with a single sloped roof can often be ventilated with soffit vents and "pot" type roof vents that are installed over holes cut into the sheathing and roofing material.

I don't know if the shed has windows, but installing shades that can be closed on the side that has eastern exposure during the morning and on the side with western exposure during the afternoon should help keep interior temperatures down during the summer.

One thing to keep in mind though, is that while all of these solutions may help with your issue, they aren't going to be a total cure. Without air-conditioning, if the outside temperatures approach triple digits, the inside of the shed is more than likely going to be hot regardless of the type of roofing, ventilation, and window shades installed.

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Roofing vs. Reroofing

Roofing vs. Reroofing

If you come to find out that your roof has been damaged and needs to be fixed then there are two main approaches you can take. You can either decide to make a roof repair or replace the entire roof. Roof repairs will generally save you time and money, but in most cases a new roof is the best option. As a general rule of thumb, if the existing roof on is only one layer and there are no problems with the roof deck, a new roof is not necessary.

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