If your goal is to build an eco-friendly, sustainable home, you need to spend some time carefully considering various roofing materials. Your roof takes up a lot of space, so ensuring it's as earth-friendly as possible should be a top priority. Here's a look at three eco-friendly roofing options and the benefits they offer.
It's hard to imagine something more earth-friendly than natural stone. Slate roofs are made from slabs of real stone, so you don't have to worry about pollutants being produced during a manufacturing process. Slate roofing also lasts for ages—many roofs last 150 years or more—so you won't be generating waste by ripping off and replacing your roof every few decades like you would with many other roofing materials. And when your slate roof does need to be torn off, stone will be returned to the earth rather than artificial waste being placed in a landfill. The downfall of slate is that it can be quite expensive. Costs typically range from $6,000–$8,000 per square (a square is 100 square feet), so slate is only an option when you have a substantial budget.
Metal may not initially sound like such an earth-friendly option since it needs to be mined, but actually, most metal roofs are made from recycled materials. This means that by choosing a metal roof, you're reducing the amount of metal that gets sent to a landfill. One day when your metal roof reaches the end of its life, it can be recycled again. Metal is also reflective, which means it absorbs less heat in the summer, lowering your AC bills and thereby reducing your carbon footprint. Studies suggest that light-colored metal roof can reduce energy spending by 20% when compared to standard, dark-colored roofing.
If you want an affordable, green roof that looks natural, cedar is a good choice. Cedar wood will decompose naturally when it is removed from your home one day. As long as you're careful to buy from a company that uses sustainable wood farming and harvesting practices, you can feel good about your purchase since more wood can always be grown. Cedar is also known to be a good insulator, so your energy bills should remain in check during both the summer and the winter. Since cedar is naturally resistant to rot and insects, you shouldn't have to treat it with insecticides or other chemical sprays. Expect a cedar roof to last about 40 years.
To learn more about your eco-friendly roofing options, contact companies like Advanced Seamless Gutter & Roofing Inc.