Jul 22, 2015

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Dark Roofing Means Energy Savings in Cooler Climates

Dark Roofing Means Energy Savings in Cooler Climates

The Columbus, Ohio area doesn’t have the coldest climate in the country, but it is still considered a cooler climate in which darker roofing may be better for energy savings. White roof shingles and other light colours can be attractive, but they don’t hold heat in the winter the way dark shingles do. That’s an important consideration when a home owner is trying to decide on the colour of a new roof.

Instead of going to a completely contrasting colour, such as changing from black shingles to off-white, the home owner might instead choose green, brown or gray. That still provides an entirely new look to the house while not sacrificing energy savings during the cold months of the year.
White, off-white and ivory shingles are more beneficial in climates with many months of hot temperatures, especially where it’s essentially summer practically all year. In fact, roofing that effectively reflects sunlight is advantageous there. Light-coloured metal roofs are good for this, as are roofs painted a light hue. Light-coloured shingles do reflect some sunlight, but the effectiveness is more limited.

In contrast, darker roofs absorb more of the warmth from the sunlight. Some of that heat can be transferred into the upper region of the building. In a cold climate, you often want that extra heat. Since you probably spend more on heat bills than you do on air conditioning, saving money during the summer won’t offset the savings you’ll get from a darker roof in the winter. Consider that the average temperature in the Columbus area from late November through early March is below freezing, while the average high temperature in July is only in the low 80s.

There’s an additional advantage to dark roofs in cold climates. The heat absorption properties of dark shingles speed snow and ice melt. The Columbus area doesn’t see a great deal of snowfall, but when snow or ice does accumulate, having it melt quickly is desirable. The region is known for the occasional snowstorm and even a blizzard now and then, and that heavy snow puts a lot of weight on a roof.

Home owners may contact a contractor to view the broad range of available shingle colours and to discuss the options. The website Arrowroofingandsiding.com is a good place to begin.

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