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Aurora Roof Installation and Repair Buying Guide
When you are installing a new roof on your home, there are many decisions that need to be made concerning the roofing materials you will use, how much you will spend, and whom you will hire to complete the project. Each of these decisions should be influenced not only by the characteristics of your home and your own personal preferences, but by the location of your home as well.
Aurora is the second largest city in the state of Illinois, with Chicago being the only city that is larger. As a city, Chicago has set an example for surrounding metropolitans by seriously working towards more energy efficiency in both commercial and residential buildings. More recently, Aurora has taken a few cues from Chicago by working diligently to implement energy efficient building practices in public buildings like the police department and city hall. Now, Aurora is working to encourage green building practices in private buildings, both commercial and residential. Before moving forward with your roof replacement, you will need to be sure the products you choose are appropriate for the climate where you live and comply with permit requirements set in place by the city government.
In this Aurora roof buying guide, we will provide you with the information you need to choose energy efficient roofing products for your replacement roof. We will also review the permit and licensing requirements put in place by the Aurora Building Department.
Knowing When to Replace Your Roof in Aurora
If the roof on your home was constructed from high quality materials and installed by an expert, it will likely last for about 20 years before you need to install a new roof. There are a few different clues that are an indication that it is time to replace your roof. The first sign that you should consider a new roof is age—if your roof is older than 25, it is time to begin planning for a new roof. And although common roofing issues such as leaks, buckling, and curling or missing shingles can be repaired, if these problems are severe enough they may warrant a full roof replacement.
Buying Roofing for the Climate in Aurora
Aurora is located in the Northern Climate Zone as indicated by ENERGY STAR® criteria. This region of the country relies heavily on heating for much of the year, but may still need air conditioning during the hottest months of the year. In an effort to increase the energy efficiency of the city as a whole, the City of Aurora is encouraging owners of residential and commercial buildings to follow ENERGY STAR® Cool Roof guidelines when making improvements to their building.
The materials used to construct cool roofs are highly reflective. While conventional roofing products normally reflect an average 20 percent of solar radiation that comes in contact with a roof, cool roofing products reflect an average of 80 percent of solar heating. As a result, the surface of cool roofs are 50 percent cooler than standard roofs, which lowers the interior temperature of the building by several degrees.
While Aurora doesn’t currently require homeowners to comply with ENERGY STAR® guidelines, doing so is not without benefits. Energy efficient roofing is known to lower the cost of heating and cooling homes, reducing consumption of nonrenewable resources and reducing power plant emissions. At this time, ENERGY STAR® Cool Roof guidelines require low-slope roofs to have a solar reflectance index of 0.65 or more and steep-slope roofs to have a solar reflectance index of 0.25 or more.
Because of the benefits they provide to the environment and the savings they provide to homeowners, cool roofs are becoming the standard in warm climates. In cooler climates, like Aurora’s, they are not as commonly used but have still been found to offer significant benefits by reducing the temperature in a home and lowering local air temperatures.
Aurora Roof Permit and Licensing Requirements
The Aurora Department of Building and Permits asks all homeowners or contractors making major home improvements, including a roof replacement, to first apply for a permit. When applying for a permit, the materials you plan to use will first need to be approved by the city so it is best to wait before making any purchases.
Contractors who are making any major changes to homes or commercial buildings in Aurora are required to carry a general builder’s license. To apply for a license, contractors can visit the website of the Department of Development Services. It is also required that contractors who have employees carry workers’ compensation insurance that will cover associated costs if one of their employees is unfortunately injured while working on a home.
Moving Forward: Caring for Your Roof in Aurora
Most roofs are built to withstand extreme weather changes, high winds, and years of use. Still, if you truly want to extend the life of your roof and maintain a high level of energy efficiency in your home, your roof will need regular preventative maintenance. Extending the life of your roof relies on consistently performing full roof inspections and immediately addressing any issues that arise. If structural weaknesses or problems with a roof are ignored, they can worsen and further damage the roof or the home.
When you make the investment in an ENERGY STAR® approved cool roof, your energy related expense will decrease. Installing a new roof also increases the value of your home and if you ever choose to sell your home, you will recoup an estimated 80% of your initial roof replacement costs. By making the switch to energy efficient roofing products, you are also taking a step towards a more sustainable lifestyle by lowering your consumption of nonrenewable energy.