In recent years, there has been increased attention on the sustainability of and waste contribution of building products. When you consider that over 10 million tons of asphalt shingles end up in a landfill every year, it is clear that roofing contributes substantially to the ongoing waste problem. Though there is no clear-cut way to choose an environmentally-friendly roof and recycling efforts aren’t always accessible, there are a few main aspects to consider when choosing a new roof system that will have an effect on your home’s waste footprint over its life. You can choose a system that has positive characteristics of sustainability in both manufacture and performance, without sacrificing style!
- Metal Roofing – Metal roofing can be sustainable in both manufacture and length of life. You can choose from metals like zinc or copper that take less energy to engineer, both new and recycled, than other materials or metals. Aside from the manufacture of metal, a metal system is extremely durable and long-lasting. You can look forward to getting 50-80 years out of a metal roof (depending on which metal and installation), which significantly reduces the cycle of waste from conventional roofing materials like shingles.
- Slate Roofing – Slate tile is one of the oldest roofing materials in history. This system is famous for being incredibly durable, fireproof, waterproof, and long-lasting. Slate roofs installed with care can withstand 100 years of age with little maintenance in most cases. Like metal, because of its long life, your roof won’t be contributing to the waste of building materials in landfills during a span of time that might require 3-4 different shingle roofs. Plus, slate is the most natural product there is! Tiles are cut from quarries of naturally occurring slate rock. Color and weathering differences are dependent on the mineral composition of a given quarry, which allows for some style customization.
- Clay Tile Roofing – Like metal and slate, you can also count on a clay tile roof to have a long life. Ludowici clay tiles are kiln-fired terra cotta from natural clay that offers breakage protection, extreme weather performance, and resistance to irritants like mold, salt, and fire. Due to these highly durable properties, a Ludowici clay tile roof can last anywhere from 75-100 years, deferring the need to contribute materials to the landfill! Not to mention, clay tile has unlimited options for finishes, shapes, and color blends, allowing for the most customization of all roofing types!
In addition to these being our favorite sustainable options, they also stand up great to many different kinds of weather conditions and changing seasons. You are looking at a larger upfront cost, but over time, you should have less need for potential repairs or damage. We always recommend looking at your roof like an investment regardless of what material you choose! It is the first line of defense against the elements and protects what matters most to you…everything that is inside. Do you have any more questions about these materials, sustainability, or what options you may have for your re-roof project? Let our team help you! We look forward to the opportunity to make your dream a reality.