How a structure performs under extreme weather conditions dictates how resilient that structure is. However, if your roof is severely damaged or torn off, and your home ceases to be habitable until you get a roof replacement, then your home needs work to be considered resilient.
Your roof is expected to perform and stay intact even when weather conditions aren’t the best. If it fails, the rest of your home is exposed to the elements, which means your belongings and even the foundations of your home are in peril.
For a roofing system to be considered highly resilient, it should have the most important characteristics: ample insulation and ventilation, wind and impact resistance, the right roof color, adequate daylighting and rooftop energy production. Discussing these with a reputable roofing contractor can ensure roof longevity even when your roof is exposed to bad weather.
Insulation and Ventilation
Attic insulation is extremely important for your comfort and the roof’s longevity. A roof without ample insulation will make your home uncomfortable, particularly during the hot months. Heat naturally rises, so it’s highly likely that it will accumulate under your roof. When your attic becomes too hot, that temperature will soon affect your indoor temperature. This will make your HVAC system work harder to compensate for the heat in your home.
In the winter, if your roofing system lacks insulation, drafts can enter through your attic vents and make your home too cold. Again, your HVAC system has to work twice as hard to keep indoor temperatures bearable.
A roofing system needs ventilation to release the hot air and introduce fresh air into your roofing system. In the summer, this will make your home less prone to heat gain. In the winter, this will prevent moisture from accumulating in your attic and causing water damage.
When heat doesn’t have a way out of your roof, your roof will stay hot even in winter. This will cause snow at the top of your roof to melt faster because that’s where most of the heat will stay. When this happens, the melted snow will flow to the colder edges of your roof and refreeze, forming ice dams. Ice dams trap water and create backups, allowing water to enter underneath the shingles. This will lead to leaks and water damage.
If you’re worried about drafts entering your home through your attic vents, don’t cover your attic vents. This will lead to moisture buildup, which can cause damage. Instead, make sure your roof has a lot of insulation. Just be careful that the insulation does not get in the way of roof vents.
In many cases, the need for roof replacement can be traced back to wind damage. Many homeowners living in temperate regions might wonder what’s causing damage to their roofs. The wind is often the culprit. Roof wind design is one of the biggest reasons to hire a professional roof contractor instead of getting an inexperienced person or replacing the roof on your own.
Even if your home is not tall, it makes sense to design it for wind speeds higher than what the local building codes require. Doing this can improve its protection against blow-offs.
Using thicker metal and more fasteners, especially at the corners and perimeters of your roof, can enhance its wind resistance. While this will add a little to your roof installation costs, it’s still much more affordable than having to replace an entire roof. Think about adding a peel-restraint bar as well. It’s possible to install this bar even on an existing roof.
How will your roof hold up against debris or hail? Hail and debris can knock asphalt shingle granules off, exposing the shingles to the damaging rays of the sun. They can also knock off whole shingles.
You can protect your roof from such issues by installing a tough membrane cover. A durable, high-density polyiso cover board beneath the membrane can significantly improve resistance to hail impact. If your roofing structure can hold the weight, cementitious pavers on top of the roof membrane are excellent add-ons.
The wind can move and even knock off outdoor HVAC units and exhaust vents on your roof. To prevent this problem and stop your home from being exposed and becoming uninhabitable, ask your roofer to use tethers and fasteners on the equipment installed on your roof.
Darker roof colors attract more heat. Instead of going with grey or black shingles, try white or other light shades. However, it’s always best to check the shingles’ R-value. Roofing materials with higher R-values are more effective in terms of lowering the transfer of heat into your home. This can help prevent a superheating attic and an uncomfortable home.
Not all light-colored roofs are effective for this purpose. High-quality shingles with high R-values are often more effective regardless of their colors. So, you should talk to your roofer about them.
If you’re concerned about solar heat gain, choose roofing materials with high R-value and operable, dual-pane windows with E-glass.
Daylighting is a tricky subject when it comes to roofing. On the one hand, rooftop daylighting systems can provide natural illumination if there is no electricity. On the other hand, however, you’ll have to sacrifice some of your roof’s R-value if you want that daylighting feature.
To enjoy the best of both worlds, make sure your daylighting system is professionally installed and has an R-value comparable to that of your roofing material. Ask your supplier about impact-resistant models, as well.
This may not be for everyone, but if you want your roof (and your home) to be completely resilient, think about habitability even when the power is out. Your roof can help if you install solar power panels on it. Solar panels are, however, not enough. They have to be connected to a battery backup so you can enjoy your backup power even when the sun isn’t shining and the grid is down for several days.
Not all roofs have everything on this list. Decide on what your roof needs to become more resilient. Get in touch with Home Remedy USA today, your trusted roofing contractor. Call us at (800) 273-6080, or fill out our contact form to tell us about your roofing project.