Today’s roofing post is brought to you by Florida Roofing Pros. Lower operating costs are achieved from energy savings and lower utility bills to operate that facility. According to the U.S. EPA approximately one third of all energy consumed in the U.S. is used to heat, cool, light and work appliances. A green roof helps maintain a more constant ambient temperature within a building.
During winter months, a green roof lowers the heating costs of that building. The layers of the roof act as additional insulation, thus less heat is lost overnight.
During summer months, a green roof shades the roof and provides insulation, by absorbing heat directly, rather than allowing the heat to raise the temperature inside the living/work space. By absorbing the summer heat and having the plants cool the air through evapotranspiration, the indoor temperature will be approximately 6 – 8 degrees2 cooler than a comparable building without a green roof. On average, for every degree reduction in the natural interior temperature the electricity consumption for air conditioning is reduced by up to 8%. This type of roof is frequently installed by roofing contractors in jacksonville.
Roof membrane maintenance and replacement cost of the membrane on a conventional roof is normally greater than the cost of maintaining a green roof.
If stormwater fees are assessed these fees may be reduced as a result of the reduction in runoff from the building. Less water will flow through the drainage system resulting in lower costs.
Your insurance premium may be decreased as a result of the plants living on your roof. Some insurance companies realize that a building with a green roof is much less likely to catch on fire than a building without a green roof, thus some insurance companies may offer you a discount.
Reduced capital expenditures will be required from many aspects of your building. Generally, a green roof doubles the life of your roof. A green roof consists of multiple layers of soils, plants and stones which protect the roof membrane from severe temperature fluctuations and the degradation impact of ultraviolet radiation. In addition, your HVAC equipment can be potentially downsized to a less expensive system because the demands on the system will be much less.
On average the temperature on a green roof is more than 50 degrees2 cooler than a black roof (80 degrees compared with 135 degrees). The summer rooftop temperatures can be 85 – 90 degrees on a green roof and 160 degrees on a conventional roof. The summer sun does not raise the temperature inside a building with a green roof to the same extent, thus smaller air conditioning units are required. The insulation value of the roof helps mitigate the extent of temperature fluctuations on the roof membrane. A membrane will crack in a shorter amount of time when it is exposed to significant temperature fluctuations. This occurs often from sunny winter days when the roof temperature increases dramatically (membrane expands) and then the roof temperature drops significantly at night (membrane contracts).
Less expensive drainage systems are required, because a significant amount of rain water is absorbed into the roof garden. An extensive green roof can retain as much as 60% of rain water3, while an intensive green roof will absorb much more rain water. (Learn more about extensive and intensive green roofs.) The functionality of the green roof may be sufficient to make a stormwater retention pond unnecessary.
The green roof may count towards an open space requirement which the property is subject to thereby allowing a larger building or less expensive work at ground level.
Improved air quality is obtained as the plants convert excess carbon dioxide to oxygen and filter out fine airborne particles. The level of noise pollution entering the building from outside sources is diminished, because the plant materials absorb some of the sound. Sound can be reduced by as much as 40 decibels. Studies have found that the wellbeing of workers and students are improved in buildings with a green roof. A green roof helps reduce the 'urban heat island effect' (UHIE). UHIE is when the temperature around a building is much higher than the surrounding area. As a result of the UHIE, increased energy is used to power HVAC units. Less air conditioning usage means less air pollution and decreased energy consumption.
Positive image regarding your sensitivity to the environment is earned because your green roof controls the amount of stormwater runoff and provides increased wildlife habitat. You will be recognized for 'doing your part' in mitigating stormwater runoff and not contributing to the urban heat island effect within that city. The green roof performs bio-filtration of stormwater, thus improving the quality of rainfall runoff. The 'soil' on your roof will have varying depths which will allow a wide variety of places for wildlife to live and your plants will provide shelter and protection for other species.
LEED® certification points4 are earned when a green roof covers at least 50% of a roof. The significant aesthetic value derived from the green roof and LEED points may result in construction being permitted quicker.
Functionally a green roof serves its occupants in a variety of manners. The roof may be viewed as a private outdoor patio for condominium owners and as educational space when the green roof is on a school campus. Some restaurant owners and chefs grow their own vegetables and herbs in their rooftop garden, as the space allows them to control and harvest the food on an as needed basis. Patients in a hospital or care center are believed to recover quicker when they are exposed to a natural environment.