Vegetative Roof Systems Offer the Greenest Roofing Option Available
Green Roofs, also known as Vegetative Roofs, are ballasted roofs consisting of a waterproofing membrane, growing medium (soil), and vegetation (plants), layered over top of a conventional flat or sloped roof system. They often include additional layers such as root barriers, filter cloths, and drainage and irrigation systems.
Green roofs that are properly designed, installed and maintained have many environmental, economic, social and aesthetic benefits. It is vital that a green roof is designed specifically around these four factors, the unique characteristics of the building and the conventional roof system underneath.
The Benefits of Vegetative Roof Systems
- Aesthetics: Green roofs use nature to add beauty and value to buildings. They also provide a habitat for plants and animals such as birds and insects and increase biodiversity.
- Roof Longevity: Green roofs often last 2-3 times as long as conventional roof systems because they protect the underlying roof materials in 3 ways:
- by protecting them from mechanical damage or punctures (most often from maintenance personnel but also from animals and wind-blown debris)
- by shielding the roof membrane from the sun’s ultraviolet rays
- and as a buffer from large seasonal temperature variations which minimizes the expansion and contraction of the underlying roof membrane.
- Energy Savings: Green roofs reduce your building’s energy use by cooling roofs and providing thermal mass and insulation, lowering cooling and heating costs.
- Stormwater Management: In many urban and suburban areas, impermeable surfaces (streets, sidewalks, rooftops, etc) dominate the landscape, preventing rainwater from being absorbed into the ground. The resulting excess runoff runs into sewer systems, stressing water treatment systems, causing flooding or sweeping pollutants into local bodies of water and damaging water quality. Green roofs can absorb
- Functionality: Your vegetative roof area can be used as a functional space when designed in conjunction with a roof deck or walkway paver system. It could also be designed to be a rooftop vegetable garden or even an open-air roof farm or park.
Green Roof Services from Kautz Construction
Kautz Construction has been in the commercial roofing business for 40+ years and has been installing vegetative roof systems since 2013. Our green roofing division is run by Gordon Kautz II, an Accredited Green Roof Professional as recognized by Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, the most esteemed green roof organization in North America. Gordon also is the co-founder of the Lancaster Urban Farming Initiative and has consulted on, designed and provided cost estimates on multiple rooftop farms and vegetable gardens. Our extensive experience in all types of conventional roof systems, as well as green roof systems, allows us to provide services and insight that few others can match.
Consulting & Design Services: There are many great green roof designers, suppliers, and manufacturers that can provide a vegetative roof design for your building. However, too often the green roof is designed as a separate entity from the conventional roof underneath, which can cause a multitude of issues for the roofing contractor, green roof installer, architect/engineer both during construction and years after installation. Special attention needs to be paid to make sure that the conventional membrane roof and the green roof material are compatible and function as intended.
- What type of conventional roof membrane (PVC, TPO, EPDM) and from what manufacturer? Should the membrane be fully adhered, or would heat-welded seams work better? Does the insulation have the compressive strength to handle the weight of the green roof? Do you need to add a cover board between the insulation and the membrane?
- Does the conventional roof membrane’s manufacturer’s warranty allow for covered assemblies such as green roofs? If so, do they only allow green roof products of their own or only from a specific list of manufacturers?
- Overburden Warranties: If there is a leak in the roof, whose responsibility is it to remove and reinstall the green roof materials? Does the manufacturer offer an Overburden Warranty to cover this cost?
Single-Source Installation of Green Roofs and Conventional Roof Systems
A typical green roof installation often involves a roofing contractor installing the conventional roof system and a landscaping contractor installing the vegetative roof. Many times this set up works great, but what happens if there is a leak in the roof after the green roof is installed? Often you get two contractors pointing fingers at each other, and the owner gets stuck with the bill. We will install both roof systems with our employees, from the roof deck under the conventional roof all the way to the plants on the green roof; everything will also be under warranty. So if you have any problem whatsoever, you have only one number to call. Single-source contractor responsibility allows us to offer peace of mind to all of our customers.
To make your green roof even more sustainable, we can help you add solar power. We consider solar power one of our specialties, and we can install a new system at the same time we set up your green roof. Solar power saves energy costs and provides an excellent return on investment.
Request a Quote for a Vegetative Roof System
We work closely with every customer to make sure they feel 100% satisfied with their project. You become a valued business partner and family member who we want to succeed. Get in touch with us at any time if you have questions about our work. Call us at 717-290-7077 for a green roof quote today!Contact Us for a Quote
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