A Cool Roof is Now the Hottest Roof

The entire building industry is focused on the green movement, and the roofing segment is perhaps focused more strongly than most. Homeowners are enthusiastic about upgrading their homes with features that are sustainable, durable and also beautiful, and they are basing their product decisions on long-term value instead of short-term price. As the economy tightens, prices escalate and fossil fuels look less promising, energy efficiency and greener products are expected to remain the top priorities in the future, both immediate and long-range.

Today, consumers conduct an unprecedented amount of research into product offerings and can hold strong opinions on the precise features they want in their homes. Remodelers can capitalize on this knowledge by working with clients to review options, recommend upgrades and present a solid visual of the finished product.

“The trend in roofing, as throughout the entire building industry, is in developing sustainable building products that allow the builder or remodeler to build or renovate homes with respect for the environment,” says Maria McDonagh-Forde, director of marketing communications for CertainTeed Roofing.

“Homeowners want to learn more about green product attributes,” she adds. “Homeowners are asking to what extent the products going into the construction meet green standards, such as LEED or NAHB guidelines. In turn, remodelers want to learn more about the role of roofing in green building standards so they can speak to the homeowner on the topic.”

“We’ve seen exceptional interest in ways to offer energy-efficient, environmentally friendly green roofing,” says Jay Banister, national green program manager for Eagle Roofing Products. “There are several factors driving the trend toward green building. Among them are government regulations and requirements, the need to reduce the cost of household electricity and the desire to see our planet’s resources protected and sheltered for the good of our descendents.

“The Eagle Green program is an ideal way for a remodeler to differentiate his business from the competition,” says Banister.

“Offering homeowners the products and peace of mind they need is the surest way for a remodeling contractor to increase his business. The remodeler should also consider evaluating his business practices for opportunities to reduce, reuse and recycle. A truly ‘green’ contractor will be green as well as offer green products.”

The Eagle Green program includes products and environmentally responsible practices that will provide greater energy efficiency, reduce waste and pollution as well as preserve needed resources. The program includes: Eagle Solar Roof powered by SolarSave Integrated Solutions, Energy Star and CRRC approved Cool Roof Tile, Energy Saving Roof and Eagle’s environmentally friendly manufacturing process.

Traditionally Practical and Pleasing

Tiled and shingled roofs have a classic appeal that is ideal for many architectural styles. Manufacturers have made great technological advances to ensure that these options are now better, stronger and easier to install and spec.

“In today’s remodeling market, performance and value are key,” says Molly Kwiatkowski, Owens Corning director of products and programs, residential shingles and roofing. “The uncertainty of the housing market has made homeowners view home improvements with a sharper focus on cost-effective upgrades that have superior performance attributes which also could help increase the value of their home. High-performance asphalt shingles continue to be the most popular residential roofing material in the United States today because they offer the best of both worlds with both durability and aesthetic design options.”

Owens Corning’s Duration Series of shingles with SureNail technology promise contractors improved productivity and greater accuracy, thanks to the product’s liberal nailing area, which allows the user to move on to the next roof sooner. Duration Series shingles also deliver greater wind protection — resisting up to Category 3 hurricane force winds.

“During this time, homeowners are likelier to invest in more practical upgrades to their home, improvements that demonstrate value, performance, durability and which increase a home’s resale value,” adds Kwiatkowski. “Consumers’ design IQ continues to increase, in response to the popularity of home improvement shows and to increasingly competitive home-buying markets across the country. Curb appeal is an important factor, especially in this home buyers’ market. Durable shingles with the wow appeal factor meet both needs of today’s homeowners.”

MonierLifetile has expanded its line of roof system components to improve installation, durability, and increase energy efficiency. MonierLifetile offers a wide range of concrete roof tile options that, when installed with the full complement of roof system components, creates an energy-efficient, high-performing and long-lasting roof that promises to meet or exceed regional performance requirements throughout the United States. The roof system components available to enhance the performance of a MonierLifetile roof are: underlayments, ventilation, flashing and fasteners. Each of these premium components is engineered to perform seamlessly with MonierLifetile’s concrete tile profiles.

“Homeowners and remodelers are eagerly accessing marketing tools to learn more about all of the possible shingle styles and colors within our roofing products range,” says CertainTeed’s McDonagh-Forde. “They want to understand their choices and the differences between various products.”

CertainTeed recently launched a visualization tool called ColorView that allows homeowners and remodelers to log onto the CertainTeed Web site and create a custom exterior of products from the company’s extensive library of products and colors. This feature enables the user to visualize their project up front and review different styles of roofing products and colors that suit their home and budget.

CertainTeed’s Landmark Series of shaker-style asphalt roofing shingles is now available in an expanded color palette of earth tones. Many of the Landmark Series products feature WideTrack Quadra-Bond technology with a wider 1 1/2-in. nailing area on each single for easy and reliable installation easier. The Landmark Series consists of five high-performing asphalt shingles: Landmark with a 30-year warranty, Landmark Plus with a 40-year warranty, Landmark Premium with a lifetime warranty, Landmark Special with a 50-year warranty and the three-layer Landmark TL Ultimate with a lifetime, limited warranty.

GAF-Elk offers their architectural shingles in two distinctive looks: Timberline Natural Shadow and Timberline Prestique High Definition. Timberline Prestique High Definition Series shingles are perfect for professional roofing contractors and remodelers who focus on “in-home selling.” Contractors can differentiate themselves by educating the customer on why attributes like high definition can increase their property’s resale value. Timberline Prestique High Definition shingles have a patented shadow band that results in a dramatic, higher contrast appearance on the roof.

The Metal Movement

“State and federal regulations, such as Title 24, California’s energy efficiency standards for residential and nonresidential buildings, play an ongoing role, too, in that these regulations start in California and tend to spread throughout the rest of the United States, eventually,” says Tony Chiovare, president of Custom-Bilt Metals. “The 2005 standards currently are in effect, but the 2008 rulemaking phase is underway, and new standards will take effect in 2009. Cool roofing materials were instituted on low-slope roofs in the 2005 Title 24 standards; one of the key new standards will call for cool roofing materials on steep-slope roofs, which are defined as having a slope greater than 2:12.”

Custom-Bilt’s Titan Cool Roof coating system can be found on the company’s standing seam metal roofing panels in more than 25 Ultra-Cool colors. The standing seam product comes in a variety of panel widths and rib heights and is available with stiffening ribs or striations in the panel area, depending on the desired look. For maximum durability, standing seam panels are fixed to the sub-roof with concealed fasteners, allowing the panels to withstand thermal movement and not become damaged as a result of external temperature fluctuations.

“As members of the Metal Roofing Alliance, we’re keenly aware of an industry need for more metal roofing contractors,” says Chiovare. “Custom-Bilt Metals helps to meet this need by training conventional roofers to install metal roofs. We frequently hear remodelers saying they wish they knew how to install metal roofing so they could offer their customers that option, so we are offering training programs to help them get into that market and increase their bottom line.”

Follansbee’s TCS II is an architectural stainless steel coated with the company’s patented ZT alloy. ZT alloy is an electrochemically bonded coating of tin and zinc applied uniformly to both sides of Type 304 stainless steel, making it extremely resistant to chemicals and environmental stress. Highly corrosion-resistant, TCS II has surpassed 20,000 hours of ASTM salt spray testing with no red rust. TCS II does not require painting and is designed to weather naturally to a soft-looking, protective patina. The metal is not degraded by heat or UV light and is oxygen reactive so the patina is formed by exposure to even pollution-free air in rural areas and coastal breezes. TCS II can be installed on industrial, commercial, institutional, and residential structures and is often specified for historic renovations because of its classic, traditional look.

MeTecno USA, manufacturer of insulated composite panels, recently introduced the 1000 Series, an insulated, mechanically seamed system for low slope roofing applications. The product combines the performance advantages of a standing seam roof with the insulation advantages of a sandwich panel. The labor-saving 42-in. width of the panels allows for fast installation. The durability and functionality of the 1000 Series makes it a top selection for commercial and industrial buildings, both new and reroofing applications. The interior liner provides a bright, reflective, washable surface which can help reduce lighting requirements.

“Metal and plastics are the two largest growth segments in roofing, thanks to durability and life cycle costs,” says Brian Partyka, president of Drexel Metals Corp. “It’s the least amount of investment for the owner long term. It’s environmentally friendly in that it’s recyclable in the end of its useful life; it’s manufactured from recycled products.”

For more than 20 years, Drexel Metals Corp. has supplied contractors with painted metal and painted metal roofing accessories. Drexel offers a variety of metal roofing products and underlayments including structural snap lock panels, standing seam panels and architectural snap lock panels. The company offers a range of colors in their DrexMet Quality high-performance roofing finishes. Drexel also offers DrexelSolar, a building-integrated photovoltaic solution that utilizes cool metal roofing and thin amorphous solar technology.

“From my perspective, the hottest trends are that the metal roofing contractor is realizing the benefit of owning a portable roll former,” says Partyka. “One of our largest customers is a roofing distributor who manufactures roofing and siding. We’re setting those guys up as the manufacturer.”

That distributor — Harvey Industries — utilizes educational opportunities offered by Drexel. “What Drexel does is provide us with quality products, service and most importantly installation training,” says Bob Delisle, commercial roofing product manager for Harvey. “Many of our contractor customers have never installed metal roofing, so on-the-job training has helped us grow their and our business.”

“Remodelers also can take advantage of today’s trends by framing themselves as responders to the big picture,” advises Custom-Bilt’s Chiovare. Remodelers who address the larger issues, such as roofing material choices, siting of additions, and strategic window placement to lessen solar heat gain, will become sought-after professionals in their markets. ”