Everyone has heard their home creak and moan around bedtime. Luckily, your home isn’t haunted. It’s being affected by fluctuating exterior and roof temperatures. When a home absorbs heat and sunlight during the day, it expands—walls, roof, joints, and all. At night, homes lose their collected heat and shrink in size. This constant expansion and shrinking, also called thermal shock, devastates your roof. However, certain roofing materials and thermal roofing products can lessen the effects of thermal shock.
You can think of a roof as a rubber band. Roofs and rubber bands have elasticity; they stretch and shrink depending on age, material, and temperature. Newer roofs are more elastic than older ones. Fluctuating roof temperatures affect newer roofs less than older ones. However, roofs grow stiffer over time, leaving them vulnerable to thermal shock. But how does thermal shock happen?
If you took a thermal image of your roof, you would be surprised how hot the roof surface can get. Even if the weather is 80 degrees Fahrenheit, your roof’s surface can be over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Weather conditions, seasonal change, melting snow, and ice can all cause fluctuating roof temperatures and thermal shock. A summer thunderstorm can interrupt a hot day, drastically dropping your roof’s temperature.
A roof’s exterior and underlayment consist of fasteners, insulations, adhesives, and other roofing materials. Every roofing material interacts differently with fluctuating roof temperatures, meaning they grow and shrink at different rates.
Most household shingles are asphalt or a similar material. Asphalt absorbs heat and stays durable for long periods, making it a perfect roofing material. However, it’s still affected by thermal shock. Asphalt tiles are interconnected above the roof assembly, causing them to shift and loosen when roof temperatures change. They bump and push against the others, causing thermal shock. Thermal shock can cause granular loss, making asphalt shingles less effective over time.
Clay is one of the best roofing materials for hot, dry climates. Homebuilders have used clay shingles and roofs successfully for thousands of years worldwide. This roofing material doesn’t shrink or expand like other roofing materials. However, clay roofing is mainly used in arid areas because of its lousy relationship with water. Clay roofing can deteriorate if temperatures and moisture levels rapidly change.
Slate is a highly effective but expensive roofing material. Although slate isn’t very flexible, it’s installed in pieces, meaning the chances of rubbing and breaking from thermal shock are low— making slate’s lifespan longer than most other roofing materials. However, extreme fluctuations in roof temperature can still harm slate roofs.
Fluctuating roof temperatures can damage single-ply and flat roofs similar to tile, shingle, and brick roofs. TPO, EPDM, and PVC are the most common material for single-ply roofs and commercial roofing. Single-ply roofing systems are a single piece, meaning they can push and pull against themselves like asphalt shingles. Pay attention and examine the seams and roof membrane of your single-ply surface for any indentations or ridges. These areas are more prone to break and fissure from thermal shock.
You can’t completely safeguard your roof from the elements, but you can better protect it. Luckily, there are roofing products and systems that give your roof more thermal resistance.
Insulation helps maintain and regulate the temperature of a home or building. However, your walls aren’t the only parts of your home that benefit from a layer of insulation. Placing thermal insulation roofing sheets under your roof can help deter extreme temperatures and keep the roof’s underlayment at a constant temperature. Your roof is less likely to experience thermal shock if it stays the same temperature. Thermal insulation roofing sheets are a viable option to fight fluctuating roof temperatures.
High-temperature roofing underlayment is a synthetic, layered substance applied underneath the roofing material. High-temperature roofing underlayment provides an extra layer of protection for metal, tile, or slate roof systems, helping to protect a roof against thermal shock, ice dams, and leaks.
Thermal roof systems are a new, innovative way to protect roofing in cold weather. Ice, sleet, and freezing temperatures can cause thermal shock and ice damming to your gutters and roof’s edge. Thermal roof systems employ concentrated heat to protect your roof from harmful cold conditions and make your roof more energy-efficient.
Thermal shock and fluctuating roof temperatures are a severe threat to roofing systems that you shouldn’t ignore. You should hire a contractor to protect your roof from these harmful variables. New Image Roofing is here to help.
New Image Roofing knows how to repair and protect your roof from thermal shock with best practices and hard-earned experience. Our certified contractors and technicians perform every inspection, repair, and restoration with maximum efficiency and diligence.
Give New Image Roofing a call—we’ll show you why we’re one of the leading roofing contractors in the Orlando area.