Are cool roofs worthwhile in Pennsylvania?

Cool roofs have become an energy-saving phenomenon - by investing in a roof designed to lower cooling costs, many have saved money on utility bills and have spread the word.

However, with a Pennsylvania climate, many people spend more on heating than cooling, bringing into question whether a cool roof is worth the investment. This is a significant question, to which there is only one answer -- it depends.

In the suburban and rural areas of PA, the decision should be made on your current heating and cooling costs. Some houses are more efficient than others, and some areas tend to be hotter while others are cooler. Having a roof that reduces cooling costs means that heating costs may increase. Therefore, the decision to install a cool roof is based entirely on each individual house.

In urban environments, another variable comes into play -- the urban heat island effect. In cities, temperatures are usually higher than in their surrounding rural areas, creating an 'island' of heat. This has to do with the absence of undeveloped ground and lack of vegetation in most cites, as well as the 'urban canyon effect' in which the increased surface area from tall buildings absorb more heat and tend to store it into the night.

But what does this mean?

It means that installing a cool roof in Philadelphia may increase your individual heating costs, but in the long run help to lower the cities heat which would decrease your cooling cost. Because of this, many cities (like Philadelphia) require cool roofs in their building codes.

In the end, it's always worthwhile to have a professional come and look at your roof and help you decide. So call us today for a free, no obligation consultation, and we'll help!

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