Reflective Roof Shingles
Cutting your energy usage is green in two ways: it reduces energy consumption, which is good for the planet, and it puts dollars in your pocket. One way to cut your power bill for summer air conditioning is to install reflective roofing shingles. Studies on reflective roof coatings done in the early 90's by Home Energy Magazine Online indicated savings of anywhere from 10% to 40% on air conditioning power consumption, depending on original insulation and the efficiency of the air conditioning unit.
Technical Breakthroughs in Shingle Roofing
Research has been ongoing since 1995 to incorporate reflective technology into asphalt shingles for residential roofing. A joint project between the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and 3M developed cool roofing granules that provide superior reflective properties when applied to asphalt shingles. This combination provides the excellent performance of asphalt shingles in all types of climate conditions with energy-saving reflective properties. In addition, this technology provides homeowners with a choice of more colors than white when selecting reflective roof shingles. According to 3M division vice president Greg Linnerooth, "The color palette is up to three times more reflective than comparable typical colored granules," which provides the benefits of energy saving with the beauty of colored asphalt shingles.
Return on Investment in Reflective Roofing Shingles?
Although there are reflective coatings that can be applied to existing roofs, the cost is prohibitive when compared to the return in energy savings. The best return on investment in reflective roofing is when a roof needs replacement. By specifying reflective roofing shingles when replacing your roof, you incorporate the minor additional cost of the reflective roof shingles into the cost of the replacement roof. In addition, by using reflective asphalt shingles, you may qualify for a federal tax credit of up to $1500 on the materials cost of your roof replacement. To qualify for this tax rebate, you must have the work done by the end of 2010, and the reflective shingles you use must meet the EPA Energy Star roofing requirements for initial and three year aged solar reflectance. In addition to federal tax credit, you may also qualify for state and local incentives and rebates that apply to the installation of energy-efficient roofing products.
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Asphalt Shingle Roofing
Asphalt shingles are the most commonly used roofing material in North America mainly because they are economical and versatile, work well on steep-sloped roofs, are sunlight and weather resistant, require little-to-no maintenance and are reasonably priced. In addition, asphalt shingles are also easy to cut, fasten, and fit, as well as being compatible with many different kinds of flashing and edging products.
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