What do people in big cities miss the most? Someone will say that silence, others will answer that the sun, which is hidden all the time on skyscrapers, however, the most common answer will be a lack of clean air because of the absence of green plants.
If your house is surrounded by green trees, bushes, and grass, then there is nothing better, because the more greenery, the cleaner the air around us. Nevertheless, not everyone can afford a green lawn or garden around the house. Fortunately, modern landscape designers have found a way out, namely, they invented a green roof.
In this review, we will tell you what a green roof is for your ADU, what advantages it has, and what layers it consists of.
The Basics of Green Roof
A green roof, or as it is often called a living roof, is a cover of green plants that are located on the space of the ceiling or roof. This technology became widespread at the end of the last century when it was invented by the German technologist Reinhard Berkamm. However, many experts agree that the history of green roofs dates back to the days of the Hanging Gardens of Semiramis.
To create a green roof, designers resort to technologies that are significantly different from growing grass or bushes in the garden. In addition, a green roof requires compliance with many safety rules in order not to collapse and not leak.
Green Roof Advantages
Green Roof is not the most frequent element of ADU and is in vain because it can bring a lot of health and emotional benefits, as well as can upgrade the aesthetics of your living space.
Improved Energy Efficiency
Green roofs offer an eco-friendly solution to regulate temperature and reduce energy consumption in buildings. By incorporating plants, green roofs act as natural insulators, providing an efficient barrier against the outside elements. The plants absorb solar radiation and use it for photosynthesis, releasing water vapor through transpiration, which cools the air around them. This process lowers the temperature of the roof, reducing the amount of heat transferred to the building’s interior, leading to lower energy consumption for heating and cooling.
Green roofs also play a crucial role in mitigating the urban heat island effect, where urban areas experience higher temperatures than rural areas. This phenomenon is caused by the absorption and radiation of heat from traditional roofs, resulting in increased surrounding air temperature. However, green roofs absorb heat and release it back into the atmosphere through transpiration, thereby reducing the overall temperature of the surrounding area. Green roofs create a healthier and more comfortable environment, enhancing the livability of urban spaces.
Improved Air Quality
The main problem of modern cities is polluted air, in which not only the excess of the permissible proportion of carbon dioxide is recorded, but also other harmful substances. The green roof, with the assistance of the photosynthesis reaction, cleanses the air from all substances dangerous to health. Some heavy particles also remain in the soil. If you will install a green roof, then in a few days you will realize how much easier it has become to breathe indoors.
Improved Water Management
A green roof can solve a very important problem, namely flooding caused by heavy rainfall. The fact is that rainwater drainage systems are not always able to cope with the load, especially if the number of millimeters of precipitation significantly exceeds the norm and rains do not stop for several days in a row. The green roof will absorb some of the precipitation and thereby reduce the load on other systems.
Furthermore, in this scenario, you will not need to pour the roof every day, because the amount of rainwater is enough to maintain the excellent condition of the plants that are part of the green roof.
Green roofs create a mini ecosystem, providing a valuable opportunity to increase biodiversity. The plants on the roof act as a sanctuary for birds, bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, which may not have access to food or nesting sites in urban areas. The green roofs also offer a safe haven for small animals that are otherwise displaced due to the concrete jungle of the city.
The plants on the roof serve as a food source for these animals, creating a self-sustaining environment that supports local ecosystems. By providing a habitat for a range of species, green roofs help to mitigate the impacts of urbanization and foster a healthier, more sustainable environment.
If you want your ADU to become a green oasis among gray concrete houses, then a green roof is your choice. Modern technologies allow you to pick any shape and configuration of a green roof, install it at any slope, choose the texture of the relief, and much more. In any case, the final result will add uniqueness to your entire site, which will sparkle with new colors.
Overall, the list of privileges from installing a green roof does not end at these points and the full range of benefits can be known only when it is put into operation. One thing is for sure, a green roof is one of the best ways to distinguish your ADU from the rest, and on par with this makes life better.
Green Roof Membrane Composition
As we noted above, the lower layer of the green roof consists of a dense material that prevents liquid leakage. In turn, this layer includes several components that together ensure the safe use of a green roof.
We identify five main layers of the green roof membrane:
- The first layer of a green roof is the structural layer, which forms the foundation for the roof. This layer is composed of a waterproofing membrane, a roof deck, and a drainage layer, all of which work together to provide a stable base for the green roof.
- The insulation layer works on the principle of conventional thermal insulation, which is installed in windows and walls. Allows you to keep the heat in the room in the cold season and create a slight coolness in the hot days. Moreover, the insulation layer reduces energy consumption, thereby saving you money for utility costs.
- Filter layer, here the name itself directly indicates the function. The soil of the green roof can be clogged with various substances, however, the filter layer acts as a protective shield in this case and takes over all the garbage. Over time, it will be necessary to change the filter layer so that the soil breathes more freely.
- The growing medium layer as chernozem on arable lands is the basis for healthy plant growth. It includes earth and various all-natural healthy additives that will promote the rapid and healthy growth of a green roof.
- Finally, the plant layer consists of vegetation such as plants, grasses, and even small trees. The plants are carefully chosen to provide benefits such as reducing the heat island effect, improving air quality, and creating a habitat for wildlife. They also add a unique aesthetic to the building, making it an attractive feature in urban areas.
On the whole, modern experts single out three additional layers that make the green roof more technologically advanced, reliable, and durable. When installing a green roof in the ADU, in coordination with the general contractor, you can choose any composition of the membrane at your discretion.