‘Brad and Jenn Build a White Castle’

Roofing is something I’ve done a little bit of, on the two little sheds I constructed. And on Habitat for Humanity builds, where the pros start a course and you can just follow their lines. But

I’ve never roofed a real house, with valleys and junk, and didn’t figure to start with the krakhaus, considering it’s had more than its share of shoddy roofing in the past 100 years.

We called in a pro.

Looking at the sample book, it took me and Jenn about two seconds to narrow it down to two choices, and about 25 minutes to decide which of those two to go with. The contractor liked neither because they were both, essentially, white.

We’ve toyed with white roofs before but never pulled the trigger because it’s not exactly a traditional look. But they’re enticing because they reflect heat rather than absorb it, and in our little terrarium of a Georgia town, not absorbing heat is as necessary as knowing how to properly pronounce chitterlings. (Hint: Two of these three are correct.)

“But the white will show stains more,” the contractor pleaded. We didn’t care. We already knocked out the chimneys, so there’s not much left to channel water to cause any stains. And we chose architectural shingles, which have a lot of variation in depth, which will help hide any aesthetic foul play. Even if there are some streaks one day, we’ll have …

  1. … saved our eventual tenant a lot of energy costs (it’s Energy Star rated, by criminey!),
  2. … saved the planet a little bit of fossil fuel,
  3. … helped paved the way for more acceptance of white roofs.

It’s a growing trend. Just keep in mind, white roofs are best suited for Southern climates, as The Huffington Post points out with this course-correcting piece on the science of what’s happening.

Turns out, our apprehension was for naught. Once nailed down, it didn’t look nearly as stark and jarring as we expected. Once we get more of a contrasting color on the walls of the house, it’ll look downright spiffy.

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