Many roofing material manufacturers are coming out with synthetic (and often eco-friendly) roofing materials that emit the sun’s energy back into the atmosphere, reducing the cooling load on homes and businesses, as well as the heat-island effect in heavily populated areas.
Synthetic roof materials are generally made with propylene. Propylene is an organic compound. At room temperature, it is a gas. When mixed with other compounds it reacts and changes. This is one of the ways plastic is made. Again, the use of plastics is becoming more and more common in roofing materials because it wears well against Mother Nature and pollution.
These synthetic roofing materials are so neat not only for their green capabilities, but also because they can mimic the look of other types of materials including wood, slate, concrete, terra-cotta and more.
While appearance is important, many of the new synthetic products are specifically designed to meet requirements of the CRRC (Cool Roof Rating Council) and other various energy efficiency standards and building codes.
California, for instance, has truly embraced the energy efficiency movement. California Legislation Title 24 was adopted to closely monitor and regulate the building codes and materials used in the construction of new homes and office buildings. Its purpose is to reduce peak energy consumption in California — particularly the kind that contributes to rolling blackouts.
Likewise, the Cool Roof Rating Council was created in 1998 to develop accurate and credible methods for evaluating and labeling the solar reflectance and thermal emittance (radiative properties) of roofing products and to disseminate the information to all interested parties.
California estimates the adoption of these new standards has saved its citizens more than $74 billion in reduced electricity bills since 1977.
The advantages of synthetic products don’t stop with reflecting heat. Unprecedented weather patterns and a number of other factors are driving other innovations including:
- High Impact Resistance
- Wind Resistance
- Increased Fire Resistance
- Resistance to Pollution
- Longer Life Spans