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Why Roofs Wear Out
High reflectivity and high emissivity.
Cool roof coatings reflect 70% to 90% of the sun’s energy when newly installed. Most of the energy is radiated away. Conventional roofing materials have reflectivity of 5% to 25%, meaning they absorb 75% to 95% of the sun’s energy. A typical “white” capsheet roof only reflects 25% of the sun’s energy. The absorbed energy is transferred to the building.
Emissivity is the ability to radiate away absorbed heat. Most cool roof coatings emit 90% or more. Even though aluminum coated roofs are highly reflective they are not considered a cool roof because they only emit 50% to 60% of the absorbed energy.
In southern California conventional roofs can get up to 180º on hot sunny summer days. A cool roof coating keeps the roof at just 10º-15º above the air temperature. This means a cool roof can be 80º to 90º cooler than a conventional roof.
Two enemies of long roof life are heat and ultraviolet light.
In the cool of the evening, a roof contracts. During the day it expands due to the heat it absorbs. This constant movement is called thermal shock. Roofs with a cool roof coating do not experience large temperature fluctuations so there is less stress on the roof membrane.
On a cloudy day at the beach you can get severe sunburn because of the ultraviolet rays of the sun. Your roof is affected by ultraviolet light even on cloudy days. Heat from the sun accelerates the breakdown process of your roof. An acrylic coating not only reduces heat dramatically, it blocks 100% of ultraviolet light!
Black Acrylic Paint
"White" Fiberglass Capsheet
Clay Terra Cotta Tile
White Acrylic Paint
Hyper White Acrylic Paint
Even at relatively cool temperatures there is a big difference in how much heat is absorbed. The chart on the left, done by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, demonstrates how different roofing materials are affected on a sunny day when the air temperature was only 55º
Cooler roof surfaces means less heat is transferred into the building. If you air condition your building you will save money on cooling energy. How much you will save depends on many factors including roof insulation, cooling system equipment and other variables. In the right situation, a reflective roof can bring cooling savings of up to 50%1, with a reduction in peak cooling demand of 10% to 15%
A considerable sum of money will be saved each year on lower energy costs with a cool roof.
Roof life will be significantly increased. In fact, according to an article written by an expert on cool roof research, Dr. Gartland; “Cool coatings are assumed to greatly slow down, if not stop, the aging process of the underlying roof materials… they can be applied indefinitely for decades before the old roof must be torn off and replaced.”2
If you keep your roof coated, you'll never have to reroof again!
1 Rita Tatum, Cool Roofs Hot Topic
2 Dr. Lisa M. Gartland, Cool Coatings Heat Up Savings
Century Roofing 3 Generations
8218 Ensign Avenue
Sun Valley, CA, 91352
License # 958049
Local # (818) 896-4351
Toll-Free # (800) 244-8286
Why Do Roofs Wear Out
How To Save Your Roof
Why "Cool" Roofs Work