Being eco-friendly is a lifestyle change that millions of individuals try to incorporate into their daily routine. It can involve recycling, reducing water waste, and buying second-hand clothing. But, did you know that your roof can be eco-friendly as well? There are roofing options available to you that won’t only help you help out the Earth, but will provide a comforting shelter for you and your family.

White/Cool Roof

This is by far the easiest way to make your roof more eco-friendly. By painting the roof shingles white, or another light color, it reflects the sun’s rays away from the home and keeps the interior cooler. This is something you could trying attempting yourself, or possibly get a roofing company to do! You can also go even farther and utilize a roofing material that uses both white glue and white gravel. This makes energy costs lower for you, especially during the summer time. Using less energy helps the environment a ton since you aren’t using as much energy from coal power plants.

If you’re looking for a roofing option that’s completely eco-friendly, then these may not be the right choice for you. Since asphalt shingles are made from petroleum, there’s no way that you can recycle them.

Metal Roofing

When it comes to being eco-friendly, metal roofing has a variety of choices for you. You can choose metal roofing that was made from a completely recycled material. In the future, when you replace your roof, the metal used can be recycled as well. Also, in general, metal can be a great choice for roofing overall. It’s incredibly durable and, with proper maintenance, it can be used for over 50 years. Also, like a white roof, the material reflects light. This helps you keep energy costs down within your home.

The downside to metal roofing is that it’s going to be a higher initial investment than your typical asphalt roofing. But, since metal roofing doesn’t require as much maintenance as an asphalt roofing would, those initial costs may level out in the future.

Wood Shingles

Wood is a natural material, which makes it a great eco-friendly choice. They also are aesthetically pleasing, and can an extra layer of style to your home. Also, they’re durable and tend to last anywhere from 15 to 20 years. Once the lifespan of these shingles comes to an end, these shingles can be repurposed.

When it comes to the cons, wood is flammable. If you live in a climate that often experiences forest fires, then having wooden shingles would not be a great choice for your home. Also, they can be quite expensive. The cost is about the same as metal roofing would be, without the durability that metal roofing would provide.

Plant Roofing (Horticultural Roofing)

This type of roofing is just as it sounds: you can literally plant a garden on your roof. Besides being a great conversation starter, this roofing has a ton of eco-friendly benefits. It adds a layer of installation that cools your home in the summertime and keeps your home warm during the winter. The plants being grown cleans your air and improves the air quality. The plants reduce the amount of storm-water runoff since much of that water will seep into the soil and help your plants grow. Also, this roof is also extremely durable and will withstand debris and many different kinds of weather. You also can plant many different things on your roof from mosses, flowers, or even trees.

The biggest con of a green roof is the initial cost. It’s a unique roofing option, so you may have a hard time finding a contractor that specializes in green roofing. Also, that contractor may charge you a pretty penny to transform your roof. To support the weight of the plants, your roof may need additional structural support.

Clay Tiles

Clay is another natural material that is a great choice for roofing. It’s even more durable than metal roofing. With proper maintenance, it can last for up to 100 years. You can also get clay tiles in a lighter color which provides the same benefits as a cool roof. Along with wood and metal, clay will reflect the sun’s rays and result in lower energy costs for you. Clay is a popular choice for those living in a warmer climate since they do such a great job at reflecting the sun’s rays.

On the other side, clay is incredibly expensive. It’s also heavy, which may relate to higher labor costs and extra reinforcement of the roof to make sure that it all stays in place. Additionally, you should factor in extra maintenance costs to help fix broken and chipped tiles that you’ll inevitably deal with in the future.

Solar Panels

When you think about eco-friendly roofing, the first thing that probably popped up in your head are solar panels. They’re a unique choice for your home that’ll definitely set you apart from others on your block. Their versatility allows for them to be installed on many different types of roofs. When it comes to different types of weather including hail and extreme storms, these panels are going to hold up against the wildest storm. Also, since the solar panels are helping you utilize solar energy, your energy bill is definitely going to thank you in the long run. They’re a great way to show your dedication to living an eco-friendly lifestyle, as it will benefit you and your home for a long time.

As you could have guessed, solar panels are expensive. If you’re looking to recoup your investment on the money saved through energy, then it won’t happen for at least a couple of years.

If you’re looking for the perfect way to bring your home into an eco-friendly future, then there are a wide variety of options open to you. There are options that fit every budget and every climate so you can make the choice that’s perfect for you and your home. But whether you’re looking to buy a “cool” roof or incorporate solar panels into your home, the environment is definitely going to thank you in the long run.