Sustainable Roofing Materials for Residential and Commercial Roof

Roofs are an important part of a home, and getting sustainable roofing materials can be challenging because of the different types available on the market. Homeowners should consider various characteristics in the materials, like durability, costs, and color, in addition to its sustainability. 

Comparing the features of each roofing material before buying makes it easier to decide on the best material. For example, clay roofs are highly durable and recyclable, while slate shingles are waterproof and fire-resistant. 

If you are in the final stages of constructing your house and want to get the best roofing material, our guide can help you out. We will discuss the factors to consider when buying materials to narrow down your options and help you choose the right sustainable roofing systems for you.

Without further ado, let us get started.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Residential or Commercial Roof

The roof is the first barrier between your house and the climate conditions. It shields the inhabitants of the home and household items from dust, water, and direct sunlight. Getting the right roofing materials can be challenging, but these factors will help you choose the best.

1. Energy Efficiency

Technology is rapidly improving, and homeowners are moving from traditional roofs to energy-efficient ones. These roofs act as a barrier between the house and outside, preventing energy exchange that leads to rapid temperature changes. 

Energy-efficient roofing materials have an Energy Star marking to indicate that they have passed the tests on energy efficiency. You can find roofing materials with different star ratings, depending on the amount of energy efficiency you want. 

Once you install energy-efficient roofs, they help maintain the correct room temperature settings and reduce the use of HVAC systems. This leads to lower heating and cooling system usage and lower energy bills. 

2. Durability

Different roofs have various levels of durability. Durability is important because your roof will serve you longer if it’s built to withstand the elements. Additionally, less durable roofing materials crack and fade a short time after installation, leading to reduce curb appeal and functionality and forcing the homeowner to replace them. 

As an example, asphalt shingles are not very durable. They have a lifespan of about 20 years at most and can only withstand certain types of weather. Metals roofs can last for up to 100 years, and withstand many more types of weather, owing to their high durability. Wood shingles are suitable for insulation and last longer than asphalt,  but don’t last as long as metal roofs. 

3. Aesthetics

Your roof can make or break your home’s aesthetics. The roof you install is a long-term selection and will ideally last for decades, so you don’t want to regret your decision. Your home’s exterior looks also play a part in the overall value of your home, which is important to consider if you’re ever selling the house. 

Always choose a roofing material that matches your home’s architectural design to maintain the aesthetics. Some materials like metal roofs fit well in modern houses, while wooden shingles are suitable for a more rustic design. It’s also important to choose a roof color that matches the rest of the home. 

4. Fire Resistance

Most homeowners don’t consider fire resistance an essential factor when buying roofs. However, it is crucial, especially for commercial buildings that are more prone to fires. 

If you live in fire-prone zones, asphalt shingles are better because they have high fire resistance, as do clay and metal based roofs. Wood roofs are not ideal in this scenario, because they catch fire faster and do not let out carbon monoxide, which can lead to dangerous buildups.

Sustainable Roofing Materials for Your Residential or Commercial Building

Now that you know the factors to consider when buying a roof, here is a list of some sustainable roofing options. You can also check out the characteristics and the pros and cons to see the ones you can withstand. 

1. Metal Roofs

Metal is one of the most common roofing materials, and the shingles and sheets are available in various options. Homeowners often choose metal roofs because of their durability and aesthetics. 

Metal roofs are also environmentally friendly because the material is recyclable. The roof’s durability is high, and it can last for several decades. These roofs are also suitable for commercial buildings because they have high fire resistance. 

However, you should also consider the downsides of metal shingles and sheets. They are prone to rust, which mostly happens due to improper gutter installation and a lack of good drainage. The roof can also dent when hit strongly by heavy hail. 

2. Slate Roofs

Slate roofs are shaped from a rock produced in slate pits. The manufacturer shapes the stone into thin slabs with uniform thickness, and an installer fixes them on a flat roof. 

Slate shingles are waterproof, fire-resistant, and durable, and make for an attractive roof. The roof’s projected lifespan is up to 100 years, and you can get them in various colors.

3. Clay Roofs

Clay is a sustainable roofing material with high durability. The roofing material is obtained from clay pits, meaning it is an environmentally friendly natural product. Clay roofs are recyclable and can be found in various colors. 

Clay roof manufacturers make them with different configurations to ensure dynamic air movement, which in turn leads to better energy efficiency. Air movement is also essential because it maintains normal temperatures underneath the tiles and reduces moisture build-up to ensure the shingles last longer. 

4. EPDM Roofing

The Ethyl Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM) roof uses rubber made from oil and natural gas. Most commercial building owners prefer this roofing material because it is fire-resistant and energy-efficient.

That being said, EPDM roofs are primarily suitable for flat roofs, and they’re more suited for hot climates, where they’re usually colored white to reflect the UV rays and maintain the room’s temperatures. You’ll need black-colored EPDM roofs to reduce energy inefficiencies if you live in cold climates. 

5. Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are a common roofing material, and homeowners prefer them due to their low price and maintenance costs. This category of roofing materials is also easy to install and energy efficient. 

However, asphalt shingles have a short lifespan. The roof lasts for about 15 to 20 years, meaning that you will likely worry about a roof replacement over the long term. Asphalt is also not environmentally friendly because it’s a non-renewable material. 

Final Words

While choosing a sustainable roofing material can be challenging, working with a roofing expert can make your work easier. They know about the best roofing materials that fit your home’s design better, as well as those that are sustainable and long-lasting. Roof Master can help you make the right decision for your sustainable roofing needs, so get in touch with us today for more assistance.

Scroll to Top