Cool Roofs – Technology you should be using

July 23, 2008 at 7:46 am 1 comment

It seems very obvious that the surface on our buildings that is most visible to the warming of sunlight should be the first we would address from an insulation and energy saving perspective, but it’s often forgotten.

Cool roofs come in many types and configurations and certainly one will be the right one for you site. First we should probably define what a “cool roof” is.

From the Cool Roof Rating Council (

What is a Cool Roof?

A cool roof reflects and emits the sun’s heat back to the sky instead of transferring it to the building below.  “Coolness” is measured by two properties, solar reflectance and thermal emittance.  Both properties are measured from 0 to 1 and the higher the value, the “cooler” the roof.

Benefits of cool roofs include:

  • Energy savings and global warming mitigation
  • Reduction in urban heat island effect and smog
  • Improved occupant comfort
  • Comply with codes and green building programs

Also on this site is a very comprehensive directory of reviewed technologies and products:

Now it is often the case that you may be required to comply with a building code specification recently mandated by your local state or city as these roofs are seen as front line components of energy efficiency and the new green building codes springing up around the country.  At this site, a link from California’s Energy Commission site ( is a calculator to help you decide what you need to do:

Also here is a good evaluation of all of the basic technologies put forth by the state of Texas for your review:

Lastly here is a truly green roof option: This is where a building’s roof is completely covered in gardens, very striking!

As always I thank you for your time and interest. Please take the time to Digg, Stumble Upon or add to the other social network of your choice to help me spread the word about these issues. Please forward any questions or suggestions to:

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Entry filed under: Design, Planning, Technology. Tags: , , .

Green Building Code adopted in California! Extreme Engineering – Technology Friday

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Nicole  |  March 4, 2009 at 10:45 am

    National Coatings Corporation has excellent highly-reflective elastomeric roof coatings. They have been tested and proven to be the highest reflective roof coating available! Check them out at


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