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How to Talk About Cool Roofs and Solar-reflective Walls to Your Customers

As a contractor, you may receive questions regarding cool roofs or solar-reflective walls from your customers. In addition to the below information, multiple links are listed below that will guide you to additional information on the CRRC website.

Benefits of a Cool Roof

In addition to saving money, other benefits of a cool roof include extending the life of the roof, lowering maintenance costs, and reducing air conditioner use.

Save Money

A building with a cool roof and/or solar-reflective walls can significantly reduce a building’s cooling costs by lowering the need for air conditioning, especially in warmer climates. The average energy savings for a cool roof range between 7% to 15% of total cooling costs. A cool roof can also help prolong the life of an air conditioning system by reducing the strain on the system during hotter times of the day and year.

For air-conditioned buildings, solar-reflective walls can reduce annual HVAC energy use in single family homes between 3% and 25%, medium offices between 0.5% and 3.7%, and stand-alone retail stores up to 9% (California Energy Commission).

Extend Roof Life

A cool roof may last longer with lower maintenance costs by blocking damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays and reducing high roof surface temperatures, both of which cause roof degradation over time.

Reduce Air Conditioner Use

A cool roof and solar-reflective walls decrease a building’s air conditioning use by reducing the amount of heat that enters into the building. In urban areas, the combination of many cool roofs can also help reduce air conditioning use by reflecting solar radiation away from buildings, which helps lower the surrounding outdoor air temperature. Therefore, with cooler daytime temperatures, buildings and vehicles use less air conditioning, which saves energy and reduces carbon dioxide emissions from electricity-generating power plants.