Green Roofs, Solar Shingles, Oh My! Aloha Construction Has All Your Roofing Questions Covered

December 5, 2017 - By 
Aloha Construction Discusses Green Roofs

Aloha Construction often works on the roofs of homes with asphalt shingles, cedar shake, and sometimes even aluminum. However, what about those homes that dare to be different? There ARE other options out there if you are looking for unique, green, or sustainable roofing for your home. Use this Aloha Construction unique roofing guide to explore living roofs, solar shingles, and thatching!

Green Roofs

Living roofs are a beautiful and unique choice for those who love going green. Although they definitely aren’t for everyone, there are a lot of benefits to choosing a green roof.

Green roofs, or living roofs, are great at conserving energy in your home. They lower energy costs by conserving heat in the winter and staying cool in the summer. Adding a layer of living roof to your home can also protect your roof and can increase its lifespan because they protect your roof from storms by increasing and improving water runoff.

Living roofs are environmentally friendly because they can create an oasis for wildlife in an urban jungle. They do so by lowering the temperatures around your roof and home and becoming a small habitat for animals in the area. Finally, green roofs are great for soundproofing your home, as well as reducing noise pollution in the area. They can even reduce air pollution in your community. Living roofs can have a drastic effect on the environment around your home and are a perfect choice for the eco-conscious consumer.

The makeup of a living roof includes many layers. The first is the roof itself, then a waterproofing membrane, drainage, filters, the soil and finally the plants. Of course, this adds an increased strain to the structure and is much heavier than a typical roof. If you are thinking of installing a living roof on your home, check your foundation and structure to make sure it will be able to hold the weight. Green roofs can also be high maintenance because they need a significant amount of upkeep. Just like a yard, they need to be planted, weeded, cut and maintained regularly. The waterproofing level also needs to be checked often to ensure there are no leaks or tears that can cause significant damage.

Solar Shingles

Solar shingles are a second unique roofing option in the Aloha Construction guide and are perfect for the environmentally friendly. They first became available in 2005 and are a great option to save money and protect the environment.

Solar shingles can look a lot like regular asphalt shingles, but they also provide energy for the home and save money in the long run by cutting electricity bills. Solar shingles can be connected to a battery to power your home or directly to the power system in your community. If it is connected to the power system, your home can even provide energy back into the system and earn money from the shingles. Finally, because solar shingles are good for the environment in some states they can entitle you to tax breaks and subsidies to save money as well.

Some disadvantages to using solar shingles are that they are much more expensive to install than regular roofing, so they require a large upfront investment. Solar shingles also only work on some homes, because to be most effective they need to be on a south-facing roof. They are also better suited to some locations more than others because they are so dependant on weather and climate.


A final roofing type in the Aloha Construction unique roofing guide are thatched roofs. Thatched roofs are most popular in beach towns and tropical climates, although they were also commonly used in small-town Europe. Thatched roofs offer a unique look to your home, as well as some advantages and disadvantages.

Thatched roofs are made from many layers of dry vegetation. One major advantage to choosing a thatched roof is that they need little maintenance and can last for up to 50 years before they need replacement. However, the ridge of the roof requires extra work and usually needs to be replaced every 10 years. Thatching is also a great insulator and can lower energy costs by keeping the home cool in the summer and warm in the winter months. Thatched roofs are eco-friendly because they are made from natural materials instead of oil-based or nonrecyclable shingles like asphalt. They are also great with water runoff so they do not retain moisture leading to rot and leaks.

However, thatched roofs have some disadvantages as well. They are lighter than other roofs and therefore cannot hold the weight of snow accumulation well. That’s why they are better suited for hot or tropical climates. Thatched roofs can also be more expensive to insure because they are seen as having a higher fire risk. Finally, although they were originally used because they were a low-cost option, today thatched roofs are expensive to install and can cost around $12 to $15 per square foot.

When it comes to unique roofing, Aloha Construction has seen it all. For homeowners ready to buck the trend of typical asphalt shingles, there are a lot of other choices on the market today. Green living roofs grow grass and vegetation and are environmentally friendly. Solar shingles are also a great choice for the eco-conscious because they protect the environment and lower energy costs. Finally, thatched roofs can be a historical choice for a unique look for your home.

Just make sure no matter which unique roofing choice from the Aloha Construction guide you may be considering, always check your house’s structural integrity to make sure it can bear the weight of a non-traditional roofing option, especially if you would like to build a living roof. Another important step is checking your area’s zoning laws before you make a final choice. Some states, counties, and homeowners associations have different laws and regulations regarding roofing types and looks, so make sure you comply with all of those before you make your final choice. Unique and nontraditional roofing options are becoming more popular every year, and can be a great option for your home!


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