This News post is to make you aware of the potential problems with green roofs and the best way to void them and a failed green roof project. We decided to give some unbiased advice because we don’t want anybody getting caught out by the cowboys of the world!
When first designing your green roof please be aware that many companies will offer the world for very good value (cheap) prices. Eco green roofs have recently been involved with some expert witness court cases due to failed green roofs, a major issue with green roof products is currently the are only guidelines for green roofs not actual standards. Most products we purchase day to day hold either a Kite mark or BBA certification, green roofs don’t at present they fall under just a broad guideline for individual green roof components to abide by.
Green roof products and green roof installations should conform with the GRO code (the UK Green Roof Association) or FLL guidelines (a german green roof guideline) The first thing to look for is if the companies you are speaking with are in fact members of the NFRC (national federation of Roofing contractors) of GRO, If the green roof company is not be very wary and maybe ask yourself why!
The second thing to look at is price if you ask for a range of quotations for your green roof project, chances are the prices will be fairly similar, usually independent green roof companies will be fractionally less because they do not have to add such a large overhead to its pricing model. If you see a price that is far lower a good idea would be to ask for a full breakdown and an NBS specification. A Q37 green roof specification is only valid if it contains the NBS plus and RIBA logo’s on the bottom showing the products have been tried and tested to ensure they do what they say.
The next important thing is to ensure the installation teams are trained in green roof installations and also adequately health and safety trained (for example Eco green roofs installers are not trained to the minimum CSCS card level they are all supervisor level health and safety trained to ensure they work in a safe and logical manner.) If they haven’t got the supervisor installation ask if they hold the NVQ for green roof installation a current qualification being offered that we at Eco Green Roofs actually are helping to re-write.
When picking your waterproofing manufacturer ensure the certification supports green roofs and also just so you are aware there isn’t a Green roof BBA so anyone who tells you differently is mis-leading you! The BBA will only have tested the waterproofing membrane not any of the green roof products!
Good luck with your green roof project but our advise would be, check out who your using, ask for recommendations, make sure they are credible and members of GRO, They are adequately Health and safety trained, and can send through fully accredited and qualified NBS Specifications. Ask for Case studies of recent installations and if the price is a lot cheaper ask yourself why! If you have to replace the roof it will cost far more in the long run!