Clean air and green grass. These aren’t things you’d normally expect to see on top of a commercial building. With an extensive green roofing installation however, you can enjoy these features on top of fantastic energy savings. While other solutions may claim to be green, these roofing systems have the results to back it up!
Extensive green roofs provide a nice entry level solution for commercial organizations looking for long-term energy efficiency. Unlike many commercial roofing solutions, these systems don’t require significant maintenance over during their impressive lifespans. If that sounds exciting, our team at Roofer’s Guild would love to find a green roofing professional in your community to provide additional information.
Contact us today at (877) 282-8968 to get started!
Extensive Green Roofing Explained
While intensive green systems incorporate 6 inches or more of growing medium (plus supporting framework) to feed larger bushes and trees, extensive roofs offer a simpler option. They usually only have a few inches of faux soil, which provides nourishment of hardy grasses, flowers, and other minor flora. This makes them much more accessible for homeowners and small businesses that crave more efficient roofing.
How does an extensive green roofing system work?
You can’t just throw soil on top of your commercial rooftop and hope for success, that’s for sure! Once the bare surface has been prepared, your roofing contractor installs a series of layers designed to support the plant life and minimize maintenance requirements. From bottom to top, your typical green system looks like this:
- A Waterproof Membrane
- An Insulating Layer
- Porous Draining Material
- A Root-Blocking Membrane
- Nutritious Growing Medium
- Your Chosen Plant Life
The waterproofing material prevents moisture from corroding your base roof structure. A well-crafted system should never leak into the building below. The layer of insulation above provides additional energy savings for your business. Green roofs absorb quite a bit of moisture during rainy days, and the leftover runoff escapes through the drainage material to exit the rooftop. Just above the drainage layer lies a thick membrane designed to block plant roots from extending downward. Finally, we come to the nutrient-rich, pest-free growing medium that nourishes the plants on top!
Commercial Benefits of Extensive Green Roofing
While “going green” certainly has its own rewards, businesses earn quite a few enticing benefits from extensive green roofing. First, plant life naturally dispels heat from the surface of the roof. This prevents the heat gain that so many other flat roofing systems struggle with, especially darker varieties. Internal temperatures remain undisturbed as a result, significantly reducing heating and cooling costs.
Studies by the General Services Administration state that a green roof system may provide as much as a 224% return on investment!
Their analysis incorporates benefits such as energy efficiency, significant reductions to storm water runoff, dramatic property value appreciation, absorbed carbon emissions, and enhanced biodiversity. Not all of these factors may be as monetizable as a reduced energy bill, but they are fantastic nonetheless! For many companies, one of the favorite perks of green roofing is advancement towards LEED certification and local tax benefits. Since the plant and growth medium also absorb impact trauma, you won’t have to worry about rooftop hail damage during the long 50 year lifetime of your green roof!
Top Practical Benefits of Green Roofing
- Average 50 Year Lifetime
- Energy Savings
- Potential LEED Advancement
- Real Estate Appreciation
- Reduced Storm Water Runoff
- Minimal Maintenance Requirements
- Storm Damage Protection
What are the Requirements?
Extensive green roofing systems may not weigh as much as their intensive counterparts, but they still pack in quite a bit of soil and plant life. This means your roof may require some additional reinforcement to uphold the weight. Green roofs occasionally require watering, but most rooftop plants are chosen based off their excellent resilience to sustained exposure. The GSA claims the average installation premium for extensive green roofing lies just under $12 per square foot, though this may fluctuate based off pricing in your community.
If you haven’t already, we highly recommend you read through the GSA’s study on green roofing, including their investment projections and cost-benefit analysis! It’s a fascinating read, and it also features helpful tips on maximizing the life of the rooftop.
Find Your Green Roofing Professional!
While the initial investment may be significant, it’s clear that external green roofing offers phenomenal savings and functional benefits for commercial organizations. However, that all starts with a quality installation plan from a seasoned roofing professional. Our team at Roofer’s Guild would love to help you find and contact a trusted company in your local area.