Cool Flat Roofs for Commercial Buildings Save Energy Monster Commercial

Cool Flat Roofs for Commercial Buildings Save Energy Monster Commercial

Cool Flat Roofs for Commercial Buildings Save Energy

by Dan Sheridan and Paul Peic

White roofing or “Cool Roofs” have been around for a while, but in recent years better materials and higher reflective pigments are making cool roofs very beneficial to building owners. We are even seeing government incentives and grants to convert older “dark roofs” to cool roofs.

With a highly reflective flat roof, building owners are noticing substantial savings on electrical bills. There are many benefits to having a cool roof on your building. The first thing that building owners who have changed to a Cool Roof, notice is that their A/C units run a third of the time in the summer months, this is due to the fact that many cool roofs use either a white or light coloured roof that reflects the sun’s UV rays back into the atmosphere. The heat is not transferred into the building, making it easier to keep cool. In fact, the temperature inside the building will be close to what the building ambient temperature is in the evening, keeping in mind that all windows and doors are kept closed.

Cool White Roof Saves Energy for Educational Facility

Traditional flat roof systems work the opposite; they do a poor job of reflecting the sun’s rays and they absorb these rays and the heat that comes with them. This is not only bad for keeping the building cooler, but it is also bad for the materials used as water proofing layers to keep Mother Nature out. The sun’s rays are just as damaging to these roof areas as it is to our skin. Using a white coloured roof, acts as a powerful sunscreen, protecting the roof form UV damage and in time failure which causes leaks.

Many older tar and gravel type roofs are extremely hot to the touch on a summer’s day, an indication of how poorly they reflect the sun. Temperatures of 70 to 90 degrees Celsius are common. On the other hand cool roofs are cool to the touch (less than 5 degrees Celsius), making it very comfortable to do any maintenance or work on these roof tops. Another benefit to cool roofs is that HVAC (heating, ventilating, and air conditioning) units are typically located on industrial and commercial roofs, when the roof is white, these units will run more efficiently because they are drawing in cooler air, this not only saves money, but it also increases the life span of these expensive units.

Cool Flat Roof — Cross Sectional Diagram of what goes on a cool roof

Many Benefits to a Cool White Roof

One flat roof system uses a highly reflective elastomeric coating on hot asphalt, combining the best roof ever invented (BUR); the built up roof and the most reflective white coating available today to produce a cool flat roof that never needs replacing. The TOUGHROOF multi layered flat roofing system is one of the better alternatives out there. It is based on a traditional hot tar and gravel roof, minus the gravel. Typically gravel or stones where used as a sunscreen, but this worked poorly. The gravel or stone heats up in the sun and transfers this heat to the roof. On really hot days the gravel would sink into the tar layers, making it a real problem if work needed to be done on the roof. As trades people walk on these types of roofs the smaller, sharper stones would start to penetrate the tar layers, after several years of this, leaks would start to develope. Another disadvantage to using gravel as a sunscreen is that gravel or stone does not  lay uniformly, there are many tiny areas between the stones/gravel where the sun’s UV can get through and start eating away at the tar, this results in cracking and eventually leaks in the roof. TOUGHROOF uses an elastomeric highly reflective (up to 90% reflectivity) sunscreen titanium based coating that adheres to the asphalt. There are no areas where the sun’s UV can penetrate.

Another concern for building owners is weight up on their roof, especially when considering putting other equipment like new HVAC or solar panels. The weight savings of using a white coating as opposed to gravel is tremendous. Solar companies love this type of system because:

  • They have the longest warranties in the business (20 years)
  • They have a ultra white surface that produces better yields, because of the reflective rate (up to 90%)
  • Less weight on the roof, means that the roof with solar panels and a TOUGHROOF is lighter than the original tar and gravel roof on it’s own
  • Cost effective – this type of roof is no more expensive than a traditional BUR roof. Over time it is actually cheaper, as you will never need to fully replace the roof, the only part of the roof that would ever need replacing or updating is the white coating.

North America is starting to get on board with the cool roofing movement. We need to stop contributing to the Urban Heat Island Effect, and cool roofs are one of the great ways of stopping this. If you are a building owner, you may be wise to consider Cool Roofs and their benefits the next time you need to repair your roof.

By Dan Sheridan and Paul Peic of TOUGHROOF

This entry was posted on Friday, September 23rd, 2011 at 10:13 am and is filed under Going Green. Retrofits. Sustainability. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response. or trackback from your own site.

Cool Flat Roofs for Commercial Buildings Save Energy

by Dan Sheridan and Paul Peic

White roofing or “Cool Roofs” have been around for a while, but in recent years better materials and higher reflective pigments are making cool roofs very beneficial to building owners. We are even seeing government incentives and grants to convert older “dark roofs” to cool roofs.

With a highly reflective flat roof, building owners are noticing substantial savings on electrical bills. There are many benefits to having a cool roof on your building. The first thing that building owners who have changed to a Cool Roof, notice is that their A/C units run a third of the time in the summer months, this is due to the fact that many cool roofs use either a white or light coloured roof that reflects the sun’s UV rays back into the atmosphere. The heat is not transferred into the building, making it easier to keep cool. In fact, the temperature inside the building will be close to what the building ambient temperature is in the evening, keeping in mind that all windows and doors are kept closed.

Cool White Roof Saves Energy for Educational Facility

Traditional flat roof systems work the opposite; they do a poor job of reflecting the sun’s rays and they absorb these rays and the heat that comes with them. This is not only bad for keeping the building cooler, but it is also bad for the materials used as water proofing layers to keep Mother Nature out. The sun’s rays are just as damaging to these roof areas as it is to our skin. Using a white coloured roof, acts as a powerful sunscreen, protecting the roof form UV damage and in time failure which causes leaks.

Many older tar and gravel type roofs are extremely hot to the touch on a summer’s day, an indication of how poorly they reflect the sun. Temperatures of 70 to 90 degrees Celsius are common. On the other hand cool roofs are cool to the touch (less than 5 degrees Celsius), making it very comfortable to do any maintenance or work on these roof tops. Another benefit to cool roofs is that HVAC (heating, ventilating, and air conditioning) units are typically located on industrial and commercial roofs, when the roof is white, these units will run more efficiently because they are drawing in cooler air, this not only saves money, but it also increases the life span of these expensive units.

Cool Flat Roof — Cross Sectional Diagram of what goes on a cool roof

Many Benefits to a Cool White Roof

One flat roof system uses a highly reflective elastomeric coating on hot asphalt, combining the best roof ever invented (BUR); the built up roof and the most reflective white coating available today to produce a cool flat roof that never needs replacing. The TOUGHROOF multi layered flat roofing system is one of the better alternatives out there. It is based on a traditional hot tar and gravel roof, minus the gravel. Typically gravel or stones where used as a sunscreen, but this worked poorly. The gravel or stone heats up in the sun and transfers this heat to the roof. On really hot days the gravel would sink into the tar layers, making it a real problem if work needed to be done on the roof. As trades people walk on these types of roofs the smaller, sharper stones would start to penetrate the tar layers, after several years of this, leaks would start to develope. Another disadvantage to using gravel as a sunscreen is that gravel or stone does not  lay uniformly, there are many tiny areas between the stones/gravel where the sun’s UV can get through and start eating away at the tar, this results in cracking and eventually leaks in the roof. TOUGHROOF uses an elastomeric highly reflective (up to 90% reflectivity) sunscreen titanium based coating that adheres to the asphalt. There are no areas where the sun’s UV can penetrate.

Another concern for building owners is weight up on their roof, especially when considering putting other equipment like new HVAC or solar panels. The weight savings of using a white coating as opposed to gravel is tremendous. Solar companies love this type of system because:

  • They have the longest warranties in the business (20 years)
  • They have a ultra white surface that produces better yields, because of the reflective rate (up to 90%)
  • Less weight on the roof, means that the roof with solar panels and a TOUGHROOF is lighter than the original tar and gravel roof on it’s own
  • Cost effective – this type of roof is no more expensive than a traditional BUR roof. Over time it is actually cheaper, as you will never need to fully replace the roof, the only part of the roof that would ever need replacing or updating is the white coating.

North America is starting to get on board with the cool roofing movement. We need to stop contributing to the Urban Heat Island Effect, and cool roofs are one of the great ways of stopping this. If you are a building owner, you may be wise to consider Cool Roofs and their benefits the next time you need to repair your roof.

By Dan Sheridan and Paul Peic of TOUGHROOF

This entry was posted on Friday, September 23rd, 2011 at 10:13 am and is filed under Going Green. Retrofits. Sustainability. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response. or trackback from your own site.


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