The Benefit Of Metal Roofs In Hot, Dry Climates
Hot, dry climates present unique concerns when selecting a roofing material because of the likelihood of severe weather and extreme temperatures. Metal is often the best option in these climates because they help negate some of the significant risks associated with the climate.
A metal "cool roof" can be the answer to keeping your home cooler, thereby reducing your utility usage. A cool roof is a metal that is high in solar reflectance and emissivity. Solar reflectance is the roof's ability to reflect the sun's energy. Emissivity is how fast the roof returns to its normal temperature after the sun's energy is released back into the atmosphere. These two values are used to create a solar reflectance index (SRI). Higher SRI values result in a cooler roof. Metal roofs can come in a range of colors and selecting an option with a high SRI value will keep your home cooler. The cooler options are typically light in color.
The fire-resistant aspect of metal roofs is also important in hot, dry climates because of the significant risk of fire. Not only is there the risk of wildfires, but "dry lightning" is another risk. This occurs when there is a thunderstorm without rain. The rain during a thunderstorm helps reduce the chance of lightning causing a fire or at least the rain may douse the fire quickly. Choosing a metal roof helps negate this risk because the roof is made of fire-resistant material. Additionally, a fire-resistant roof also reduces the risk of neighboring homes and trees catching fire in the event your home catches fire.
The southwest US is generally associated with hot, dry weather. Hurricanes making landfall along the Pacific coast and those reaching further inland are rare, but not impossible. Most of the risk of severe weather comes from strong thunderstorms. Severe thunderstorms typically produce vivid lightning, hail, gusty winds, and the risk of tornados. Metal roofs often afford you the most protection against severe storms.
Hail and other projectiles may cause dents in the roof but are less likely to cause holes in your roof or other significant damage. Metal roofs are also wind-resistant. Depending on the specific metal and how it is installed, the strength of gusts it can withstand will change, so keep this in mind.
Metal roofs are especially suited for hot, dry climates because they can be designed to keep your home cooler and protect you from fire and severe storms. When it's time to fix your roof, metal will be the best investment.
To learn more, contact a roofing contractor in your area.