** This article was previously published on Examiner.
White roofs are a fairly new innovation in energy efficient housing, and are currently one of the hottest trends in the industry. Known to reduce energy cost, lower utility bills, and reflect heat, there are many benefits of a white roof. But there are some skeptics that argue a white roof does not prove itself useful in cold winter months.
What is a white roof?
A white roof, also knows as a cool roof, is just what it implies. White roofing materials are used in place of the typical dark shingles that we are used to seeing. In the same way that dark colors attract heat, light colors reflect it making it easier to regular the temperature inside your home.
What are the benefits of a white roof?
These light-colored roofs have been proven to lower the temperature on the surface as well as the area around it. The benefits of a white roof have been researched by many and the reports look promising. In particular, one study stated a very compelling fact. Keira Butler of MotherJones.com reports that:
“The latest white-roofs study used computer simulations to figure out what might happen if every roof in every city of the world were white. The finding: An average temperature reduction of .7 degrees Farenheit.”
In addition to lower energy costs, the benefits of a white roof also include lower carbon dioxide emissions and lower smog levels in urban areas.
So what about those skeptics?
With every new idea comes scrutiny. White roofs are no different. There are skeptics that claim a white roof will serve no practical purpose in cold winter months, and will actually cause an increase in energy costs in an effort to warm the home. However, that idea has not been proven. In fact, some research indicates that in the winter, the color of the roof is not an issue as the angle of the sun is lower and the skies are darker and cloudier during this time.
Should you replace your current roof with a white roof?
While there are definite benefits of a white room, I would not recommend replacing your roof if it is in good condition, as you would just be incurring an unnecssary cost. However, when the time comes to replace your shingles or add a new roof entirely, a white roof is certainly worth looking into. It could help you stay more comfortable and lower your energy bill.
Columbus Home Improvement Examiner