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          1 min read

          Vegetative Roof, FM Global, and Electric Field Vector Mapping

          So your project has a vegetative roof. Will it be insured
          under Factory Mutual? If so did you know you will need to comply with FM 1-35.   Do not get confused and think this has to do
          with wind uplift.   FM 1-35 provides
          general guidelines for green roof systems.

          Here is the link to download the free data sheets produced
          by FM Global.  You must register first: http://www.fmglobal.com/fmglobalregistration/

          Here are some things we see on vegetative green roof
          projects that are not known, missed, or misunderstood for vegetative roofs.

          • Including
            the Electric Field Vector Mapping (EFVM) with the vegetative roof should be
            enough to comply with FM right?
            • Sure including EFVM is a great on detecting a leak
              early before there is a major issue but the EFVM is not even mentioned in
              FM 1-35.   FM 1-35 states you need
              to perform a flood test prior to installing anything above the
              membrane.  The test includes a
              standing water leak test of the entire vegetative roof with no less than
              2 inches of water, blocking all scuppers and downspouts for 24 hours.  The membrane seams are walked before
              and after the water is drained. If there are signs of leaks test cuts are
              made according to the membrane manufacturer and then patched per the membrane
              manufacturer. The flood test will be repeated until no leaks are
              detected.
          • Including and installing the EFVM is the same for
            all membrane roofing.
            • No - We have found that some manufacturers require
              that the grounding screen for the EFVM is installed under a cover board
              because their membrane will not adhere to the grounding screen.   This location is a concern because if
              you get a leak in the membrane the water can travel over the surface of
              the board and show the leak in a different location.   There are some manufacturers that include
              the grounding screen under the membrane which we believe is the correct
              location.

          With the above mentioned items be
          sure to:

          • Specify a flood test if your project is under FM 1-35 and understand all other requirements within FM 1-35 for the vegetative
            roof assembly. 
          • If you will include the EFVM show the correct
            location of the EFVM materials on your drawings and/or list the correct
            install location in the specification for the selected membrane. Lastly
            don't forget to ask the question "So where did you say the grounding
            screen goes".
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