Green Roofs for Homeowners — Green Roofs Today

Green Roofs for Homeowners - Green Roofs Today

Improve the world with Green Roofs

Green Roofs for Homeowners

Environmentally-conscious homeowners do not only help reduce the negative impact of humans on the environment but actually save a lot of money on green technologies that base on use of natural materials and energy efficiency. In recent years has significantly increased the number of passive homes due to their energy efficiency as well as the number of homeowners who decide to cover their roof with plants.

Green roof system that was developed in Germany in the 1960s has been shown to be one of the most environmentally friendly and cost-efficient roofing systems. It bases on covering the roof with plants and soil or other growing media which even help save the environment. How? The plants are known to absorb air pollutants including carbon dioxide while releasing oxygen and act as a natural air filter. Homes with green roof therefore help improve air quality, especially in urban areas where air pollution is a major problem.

Another major advantage of green roofs is absorption of rainwater. Depending on type of green roof system and type of plants that cover the roof, a green roof can absorb up to 75% of rainwater which significantly reduces the amount of rainwater running into sewage systems. The water that is absorbed by the plants is then released into the air via condensation. But what is even more important for homeowners is extraordinary thermal insulation of green roof systems.

The plants and the soil on the rooftop have been shown to reduce the costs for heating and cooling for over 50% because they help prevent heat loss during cold winter months and keep the building cool during hot summer months. The investment in green roof system therefore pays off in a relatively short time period. In addition, green roofs have exceptionally long life span and can last up to 50 years if properly maintained. This means that green roof systems are among the most cost-efficient roofing options though the initial investment is larger.

Green roof systems are appropriate for virtually any building including tall skyscrapers and small residential homes. However, most homeowners do not have much choice when it comes to type of green roof system. There are three main types known as intensive, semi-intensive and extensive green roofs. Intensive green roofs are most often seen on rooftops of large buildings because their require a significant soil depth to be able to accommodate large plants and sometimes even trees. They often mimic parks and require a lot of maintenance. Semi-intensive green roofs are somewhere in between intensive and extensive systems. Most homeowners decide for extensive green roof system because it foresees a thin layer of soil or other growing medium and self-sustainable plants that require minimal care.

Green Roofs for Homeowners - Green Roofs Today

Extensive green roof works great for both flat and slopped roofs though homeowners with slopped roof have less options and most often choose plants that are self-sustainable. Homeowners with flat roofs, on the other hand, have the possibility to create an additional outdoor living area and even grow their own fruits, vegetables and flowers on the roof. Which plants to plant on the roof depends on several factors including climate, the amount of sunlight the roof receives per day, convenience, function and personal preferences. The plants that work best for covering the roof are most often provided by the contractor and if not, the contractor offers advice where to turn to get the necessary information or/and plants for roof covering. In general, plants that are the best choice for extensive green roofs are hardy, fast growing but not invasive, self-sustainable, fire-resistant and aesthetically appealing.

All green roofs are constructed in layers which besides the plants and soil or other growing medium include drainage, filter cloth, insulation layer and waterproof membrane which prevents any leaking. Extensive green roofs include a thin layer of soil only and are not too heavy for any residential house. Even more, they can be even used for roofing pool rooms, garages and garden houses which makes extensive green roofs a perfect choice for every environmentally-conscious homeowner.

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