Urban heat islands are areas in cities that are warmer than their surroundings. In this blog, roofing contractor Feller Roofing of New Braunfels takes an in-depth look at the urban heat island effect, and how the right kind of roofing can mitigate its effects.
Urban Heat Island Effect
When a considerably large area absorbs heat from the sun, it creates and “island” of radiant heat. This is due to the large concentration of surfaces that absorb heat: concrete, asphalt roads and dark-colored roofs. The radiant heat retained by these surfaces raises the overall temperature of the area, which is why the street temperature in urban areas, particularly in densely-populated business districts, is significantly hotter compared to suburban areas.
Buildings situated in urban areas tend to have higher indoor cooling requirements. Also, workers and apartment dwellers tend to stay indoors longer because the heat doesn’t dissipate at night. Both factors can place additional strain on air conditioning systems, because of longer operating hours and higher settings.
Commercial roofing systems are different from their residential roofing counterparts. But one thing they have in common is that there are available roofing options that can help mitigate the urban heat island effect. Cool roofs are white or light-colored roofs that has reflective properties. It’s similar to how wearing white clothing under the sun is more comfortable than wearing dark clothes.
Since white and light-colored surfaces are naturally reflective, a cool roof can reflect sunlight—including UV rays and solar heat—thereby reducing the amount of radiant heat that gets absorbed. Today’s commercial roofing systems even have an edge over sloped roofing systems, as single-ply roofing materials like TPO and EPDM already come in white. Combined with properly-insulated substrate, it can dramatically reduce the heat absorbed through the roof. More importantly, it helps mitigate the urban heat island effect in the area.
Feller Roofing of New Braunfels is your leading provider of residential and commercial roof repair, maintenance and installation services. Give us a call at (830) 214-2400 or fill out our contact form. We serve customers in New Braunfels, TX, and the surrounding areas.