Hansberger Refrigeration Blog: Your AC Repair Resource

How Roofs Can Affect HVAC Systems

How Roofs Can Affect HVAC SystemsAccording to the U.S. Department of Energy, running the HVAC system consumes roughly half the energy used in an average home. If you’re concerned about reducing your HVAC-related energy costs, you need to consider the effect your roof has on your home’s efficiency.

Understanding the HVAC – Roof Relationship

The sun beating down on the roof can directly affect how much energy it takes to keep your home comfortable. That’s because heat absorbed through the roof can easily radiate down through the attic into your conditioned living space. Compensating for that extra heat increases your HVAC system’s energy consumption, so you pay more to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature.

What Impacts a Roof’s Energy Efficiency

The type of material on your roof has a big impact in how much heat energy gets transferred down into your home. Today, there are roofing materials available that are designed to stay cooler to boost a home’s energy efficiency. These “cool” roofing materials have two key qualities:

  • High solar reflectance. Efficient materials reflect more sunlight, which helps minimize the amount of heat energy absorbed by the roof.
  • High thermal emittance. These products emit (or release) a higher percentage of the solar radiation that gets absorbed into a roof, so less heat transfers down into the dwelling below.

Best Materials for Improving Efficiency

If you plan to invest in a new roof in the near future, you can help lower your HVAC-related energy bills by investigating efficient material options like these:

  • Asphalt shingles. Regular asphalt shingles don’t reflect sunlight well, and they soak up heat. “Cool” versions feature granules coated with specialized pigments that reflect the sun’s infrared rays.
  • Metal. Bare metal roofing reflects sunlight well, but it’s a poor thermal emitter. Instead, look for cooler painted or granular-coated metal roofing products.
  • Clay or concrete tile. Some tile roofing reflects sunlight and emits heat naturally. There are also tile products available with specialized surface treatments that enhance reflectivity and thermal emittance.

For personalized advice about effective ways to improve the efficiency of your Yuma home’s HVAC system, contact us at Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric Company.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Yuma, Arizona about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 928-723-3183.