Why Metal Roof Installation Is Your Secret Weapon in Passive Building? While originally developed in Germany, the principles of Passive House can apply all the way over here in Australia, even when it comes to metal roof replacements in Melbourne. Building with passive energy consumption in mind — whether it’s aiming for Passive House accreditation or simply to benefit from lower heating and cooling costs in a difficult economic time — is only becoming more important. This applies to both high-end architectural homes and commercial buildings with the design principles easily applying to any built space people use regularly. But why is incorporating a metal roof installation, along with cladding, so integral to passive building? What Do We Mean By Passive Building? Taking inspiration from the Passive House design standards, we like to talk about passive building. This is where residences and commercial buildings are constructed or renovated to achieve thermal comfort (anywhere between 20–25ºC) with minimal heating and cooling requirements. This is done through smart material and design choices that promote insulation and airtightness, along with reducing thermal bridges. Ultimately, you’re creating a thermal envelope for the building. As a result, you have a building that is better for the environment, requiring less energy to make it a comfortable temperature. Similarly, it is a long-term cost-effective strategy, benefiting occupants whether it’s their home or business. And, when you’re using materials like a Colorbond metal roof, you’re also getting a building that looks sleek and modern as an additional benefit. Why a Metal Roof & Cladding Matters for a Passive Build? But why does roofing choice matter so much for passive building? Managing the Temperature Inside & Outside One thing that contributes to the inefficient passive heating and cooling of existing buildings is the roof. In fact, a large percentage of heating and cooling is lost through the roof. However, a metal roof can make a big difference to lower heating and cooling loads, due to the inherent thermal properties of metal. These can even be further enhanced through coating and colour choices to better absorb or reflect heat depending on the climate. Additionally, the roofing used also affects the exterior temperature. This is evident through the urban heat island effect. Essentially, this is the phenomenon where having many close buildings in a location leads to the average local temperature rising. For many Australian cities, this temperature change can be anywhere between 5 and 10 degrees hotter than the surrounding areas. When metal roofing is correctly used, however, this ambient temperature can be lowered by 3–4ºC. Choosing cool roofs (those that are lighter in colour) can help achieve this. Even for those more aesthetically minded, there are also options with Colorbond’s roofing range designed to tackle Australia’s urban heat island problem. They have darker colours available as part of their Thermatech line which reflect UV too. If every home or commercial building in a city got an appropriate metal roof replacement, it could decrease the energy consumption of that city by up to 40–50%. Keeping Buildings Sealed With metal cladding and a properly installed roof, a building has that airtightness principle of passive building. When properly sealed, it is much more likely a building will stay at that comfortable temperature range, regardless of what is happening outside. The way metal roofs and cladding are installed makes it far easier to avoid cracks and crevices that air can leak through, even when the building ages. Incorporating Appropriate Insulation While metal roofing and cladding come with their own positive thermal properties, when used in conjunction with appropriate insulation they all but prevent thermal bridging from occurring. This is when heat or cold flows along the path of least resistance, often straight outside — this is why you can spend all winter heating a building and always find it still cold. But, with metal roofing and cladding, the building is well-sealed, making thermal bridging impossible or extremely minimal. Added Eco-Friendliness While not necessarily a component of passive building, the ability to recycle old metal cladding and roofing is still certainly a benefit. It means that a building — or elements of it — can continue to be effectively used for a greener future, even if this means being recycled and remade. What Makes KC Roof Plumbing Your Go-To Passive Building Roofing Company? Passive building is only a pipe dream though if you don’t have the team to pull it off. Luckily, there’s KC Roof Plumbing. High Standards & High-Quality Materials To effectively seal and passively heat or cool a building, you need to be using the correct materials, as well as ensuring all workmanship is completed to a high standard. At KC Roof Plumbing, we know what roofing and cladding materials help to make a building energy efficient. Similarly, we use these high-quality materials effectively, ensuring that you get that tight air seal and reap all the benefits of those top-notch materials. This includes Colorbond roofing and cladding to best suit a wide range of Australian climates, including cold winters and hot summers in Melbourne. Advanced Project Management Our experienced team are more than expert roofers and cladders; they are also strong communicators and project managers. This includes working with other trades to ensure that our work is only enhanced by their labour. In the case of passive building, this includes ensuring minimal thermal bridging and getting that proper air seal. Honesty, Transparency & Proactivity A passive building requires careful consideration throughout the design and build. There is no room for false promises or hoping for the best. Otherwise, you miss out on having a building that embodies those Passive House principles. But that won’t be the case with KC Roof Plumbing. We are honest and transparent at all times about what is achievable for a building and budget. Similarly, we are proactive, looking for solutions to optimise what can be done and the results you can expect. The Melbourne Metal Roof Installation & Replacement Team You Can Rely On When it comes to building, ‘passive’ isn’t a negative. In fact, it’s the way of the future. And KC Roof Plumbing is ready to create outstanding passive metal roofing and cladding solutions with you.