Blog

5 Radical But Effective Eco-Friendly Home Ideas

Posted by on 4:23 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Radical But Effective Eco-Friendly Home Ideas

Choosing eco-friendly home upgrades isn’t just about reducing your monthly energy spending. Eco-friendly options are also beneficial for the environment because they use fewer resources and create less waste. If you are interested in making some eco-friendly changes, check out these five radical but effective home ideas. Install Solar Shingles You’ve heard of solar panels, but now there are solar shingles. Solar shingles are thin shingles that look like asphalt shingles. Unlike solar panels, solar shingles actually also help protect your roof, just like real shingles. They are durable and flexible. They are less efficient than silicon-based solar panels, but there are silicon-based solar shingles available too. They aren’t as thin, but they can convert up to 22 percent of sunlight into electricity. For solar shingles to work, your roof needs the right angle because they can’t be adjusted like solar panels. Try Passive Solar Heating Passive solar heating is an extremely radical option, but it is also incredibly effective. Passive solar heating uses the materials, style, location and position of the house to naturally keep the house warm during winter. It’s not something you can add to your home like solar shingles. You have to start at square one. You need to choose a location that gets lots of unblocked sunlight, has a lot of south-facing windows and uses materials that contain a lot of thermal mass to store heat. It takes a lot of work, but if you choose aggressive passive solar heating options, you can reducing heating energy by 25 to 75 percent. Use Alternative Building Materials If a passive solar house isn’t within your budget, at least choose alternative building materials that are renewable or recycled. One common alternative is using bamboo instead of hardwood for floors or cabinets. Bamboo is affordable, durable and it is a fast-growing grass, making it a highly renewable resource. For the kitchen, consider paper-based countertops, which are durable but are made from paper from trees in sustainable forests. Love carpet? Consider recycled-plastic carpet, which is made from plastic beverage bottles. Choosing renewable and recycled materials reduces waste and uses less precious and limited resources. Install a Green Roof If you have an asphalt roof, you may have had to get up there and remove some moss that grew during the rainy season. However, when you have a green roof, vegetation is actually supposed to grow on it. The roof has a growing medium and waterproof membrane to prevent water from seeping into your home. The plants do an incredible job of absorbing sunlight to keep your home cooler, but they also absorb runoff and provide a home for wildlife. Green roofs are expensive and take a lot of maintenance in the beginning as the plants take root, but the payback period is short, so you’ll recoup your money in no time. If you have any questions about eco-friendly roofing options, consider calling a local roofing specialist, such as Marshall Roofing Ltd roofing. Buy a Tiny House Tiny houses are becoming a popular trend, and there are many reasons why, but one of them is that they tend to be more eco-friendly. A tiny space means it needs less energy to heat and cool, so you save money and reduce your carbon footprint. On average, a regular house requires 8,000 pounds...

read more

Make Your Winery Stand Out With A Copper Roof

Posted by on 11:34 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Make Your Winery Stand Out With A Copper Roof

For small wineries trying to distinguish themselves from the many other wineries in Canada, label design and awards don’t do enough. Virtually every winery today uses creative labels, and many wineries have received awards. Wineries need a new, different way to make themselves known. If you own or operate a winery in Canada, consider making your vineyard stand out by installing a copper roof on your building. Copper roofs are both great for marketing and for your building. Copper Roofs Are Iconic When branding your vineyard and wine, a copper roof gives you a central theme to work around. Because they’re so rare, yours can become known as the winery with a copper roof. With a little creativity, you can build on this by: including pictures of your copper roof in brochures continuing the color theme with copper-colored wine bottle labels saying “look for the copper roof” when giving directions to your vineyard accenting your tasting room with copper decorations By designing your marketing efforts around a single, central theme, you’ll establish your winery’s unique proposition: it has a copper roof. Even people who don’t drink wine might want to visit to walk along your grape vines and admire your building’s roof. Copper Roofs Last a Long Time Copper isn’t just an aesthetically pleasing roofing material; it’s also highly durable. If you install a copper roof and properly care for it, you won’t have to have another roof put on your winery’s building. Neither will your children, their children or their children if the winery stays in your family. Classic Metal Roofs claims that copper roofs can, in theory, last for 1,000 years. The oldest known copper roof is on a castle in Europe. It was built in 1585 and renovated in 2009. It’s still in great condition. Copper Does Well All Year Long These roofs last a long time because copper performs well all year long. It will shed snow easily during Canada’s cold winters, reducing the amount of time an employee will need to spend clearing your winery’s roof of snow and ice. During summer, copper reflects sunlight. This will help keep your energy costs low, because you won’t need to spend as much to cool your wine bottles in July and August. Even in hail storms, copper holds up well and doesn’t dent easily. Copper Roofs Might Reduce Your Tax Burden Admittedly, copper is also one of the most expensive types of roofs to install. A copper roof will cost more than any other metal roof, because copper costs more than most metals. When this was written, the prices for various metals were, according to MetalPrices.com and InvestmentMine.com, as follows: steel cost between $0.20 and $0.30 per pound aluminum cost $0.77 per pound zinc cost $0.97 per pound copper cost $2.72 per pound At 2.8 times the cost of the next-most-expensive metal, it would cost significantly more to build a metal roof with copper than with a zinc, aluminum or steel. Because the roof’s a business expense, though, you might be able to use it to reduce how much money your winery made — and how much income you have to pay taxes on. If you’ve had a wildly successful year financially, you may want to pay for the copper roof up front and use the...

read more

7 Reasons Green Roofs Are On Top

Posted by on 4:08 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 7 Reasons Green Roofs Are On Top

Energy efficient roofing is an important part of creating the right roof, and green roofs are perfect for lowering energy costs and creating an environmentally friendly building. Green roofs are made by adding soil and plants to the top of a building. A green roof can be a space that can used by people as a park or a place to sit, or it can be a very low maintenance option for the top of a large building.  Environmental laws in Toronto actually require some buildings to have green roofs. Here are seven wonderful benefits of a green roof. Conserve Energy A green roof saves energy by making heating and cooling systems more efficient. Roofs are the part of a building that lets out the most heat in cold weather and has the hottest temperatures in the summer. With the insulation provided by a green roof, devices like hot water heaters, central air conditioners and forced air heat will last longer and run better than before. This leads to lower energy costs.  The National Resource Council of Canada conducted a study showing that a green roof could reduce the energy used in air conditioning in summer by as much as 75%.  Green roofs help control the temperature in cities and help solve the problem of cities being warmer than surrounding areas.  Create a Beautiful Space A green roof can add beauty to a city skyline and even create a space for community events and recreation. The Vancouver Convention Center boasts a green roof filled with indigenous plant life, and many Toronto office buildings offer a space for employees to eat lunch and enjoy the fresh air during breaks. Millennium Park in Chicago is a 24.5 acre green roof that sits on top of a parking garage and provides a space for recreation, community events, concerts and other gatherings.  Restaurants can also use space on a green roof for outdoor dining, and a green roof can be a venue for weddings, parties and other events.  Grow Food in Urban Spaces Green roofs that are accessible to people can be a perfect place for community gardens. Many restaurants use green roofs to grow fresh fruits and vegetables for their menus, and urban gardens can be used to help provide people in need with fresh produce.  Growing fresh foods can be difficult in cities, and green roofs offer a solution.  Introduce Better Air Quality  Fewer green spaces can upset the symbiotic balance between people and plant life. One reason plants are important to the environment is that they help manage the quality of the air people breathe. This is especially problematic in cities and industrial areas. Plants can help trap pollutants and toxic elements in the air.  Manage Storm Water A green roof will absorb and use a great deal of water that falls through rain and other precipitation. This reduces the amount of storm water that drains from roof tops and also causes water to drain more slowly, so cities are protected from flooding and sewage systems are not overwhelmed by rain.  Provide a Habitat for Animals Green roofs provide a place for animals like insects and birds to live, eat and reproduce. This biodiversity is good for the environment.  Create Jobs When a green roof is created, so are jobs. Any...

read more