Bergen County Roofing: Article About Energy Performance and Roofing
When your utility bills climb, it's easy to start looking for energy-saving solutions inside your home. However, you don't want to ignore the role that your roof plays in energy efficiency. The right roofing choices can contribute significantly to dropping those heating and cooling costs, allowing you to bring your utility bills down. A Bergen County roofing company can help you to identify cool roofing options that are ideal for both your home and the climate.
According to Energy Star, roofing products rated by the organization have the ability to reduce the amount of cooling needed in a structure by as much as 15 percent. Since your heating and cooling costs can represent almost half of your home's energy consumption, this is a significant point for making a big impact on household bills. It's also important to note that roofing products receiving Energy Star ratings are more able to reflect solar energy, allowing such systems to experience a decrease of up to 100 degrees in surface temperatures. There are roof paints and coatings on the market that can be used to add a reflective quality, although these products do not currently earn ratings from Energy Star.
Below your roof, you'll find some additional options for improving energy usage in your home. Your roofing professional may be able to advise you about insulation and ventilation issues as you consider whether supplemental insulation is appropriate. A combination of sealing leaks and supplementing your attic's insulation can trim up to 10 percent from your home's heating and cooling costs. A general rule for assessing whether more insulation is needed is a quick visual evaluation of your attic.
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If floor joists are visible above existing insulation, then additional material may be added. If you can't see the joists, then your levels may be sufficient.
You can consider batting or loose fill as options for supplementing this area, and while you may be able to do your own work, it may be helpful to enlist the assistance of your roofing company to ensure that you don't place too much insulation. Attic fans, for example, need to be free of blockages. You'll need to leave clearance for other equipment or fixtures as well. Attic soffits are meant to be clear of insulation so that proper ventilation of the attic and roofing system can take place. You shouldn't block this source of airflow at the eaves of your roof. This airflow is critical during icy weather to prevent ice dams that can damage your roof. In the summer, this natural cooling limits the potential for overheating of your roofing system, an issue that can cause shingle damage and shorten the life of your system.
A radiant barrier can be installed in the attic to further enhance your home's energy performance. There must be open space of at least 3/4 of an inch for radiant heat to be blocked effectively. This can be accomplished by placing the material directly above insulation or by stapling it to the rafters. In some cases, attic temperatures below such barriers can be reduced by up to 30 degrees.