Advantages of manufacturer input in the planning phase of a large project

 As a leading manufacturer of flat roofing materials, Bauder supplies many large projects, often working with its network of approved contractors to secure the work. As the Bauder service also encompasses the design element of construction, it is hugely advantageous for the team to be part of the initial planning stages to ensure the finished building achieves all the stakeholders’ objectives.

A new build distribution centre, located in the Midlands required a waterproofing for a 42,000m² flat roof area. When planning the construction of a building of this size, it is particularly important to ensure that the the client’s brief is met with a specification that is accurate and achievable and to confirm that all operative training is undertaken in good time prior to the roof installation beginning.

Planning and qualification

Bauder worked with the client to understand the merits of each waterproofing solution available and the suitability of each for this project.  A lightweight metal deck had been installed and the client opted for a fully mechanically restrained Bauder assembly with a polyethylene air and vapour control layer (AVCL), PIR insulation and Thermoplan FPO membrane. The Thermoplan system holds fire classification BROOF(t4) for compliance with building regulations under TS 1187 test method 4 for external fire exposure to roofs as per BBA Agrément Certificate 04/4120. This specification also had a Factory Mutual (FM) tested assembly providing an additional level of confidence and security.

A wind load calculation was carried out by Bauder prior to the specification to determine the correct type and quantity of fasteners needed for the intallation. SFS supplied the fasteners on this project and therefore included as part of the comprehensive Bauder guarantee. It was at this time that a cost comparison took place between traditional lap fixing of the membrane and installation through induction welding. By extending the width of the Thermoplan membrane roll from a standard 1.5m to 2m, and induction welding the system, considerable savings were passed on to the client for the waterproofing installation.

Chris Lee, Single Ply Product Manager at Bauder, spoke about the installer training that was organised prior to works commencing. “Any project, large or small, requires the operatives installing the roof assembly to be fully trained in the system specified. Traditionally in the UK we install more PVC than FPO/TPO membranes and lap fixed mechanically fastening is a more common approach. Therefore, a schedule of bespoke training days was set up for all operatives and site management to ensure they demonstrated the necessary skills required to install the systems involved.”


Single source supplier

One of the requirements on this project was a solar PV installation to achieve 1000kWp. BauderSOLAR was the perfect solution being an efficient, lightweight, non-penetrating PV system. The roofing contractor operatives attach the pre-fabricated Bauder membrane sleeves over the mounting plates and welded them into position, anchoring the plates to the field sheet reducing unnecessary foot traffic on the completed roof and ensuring continuity in the hot air welding of the waterproofing. The array comprised 2,940 modules and produces enough power for approximately 740 houses.

Historically, solar panel installations on a completed flat roof could be an area of conflict within the roofing manufacturer’s guarantee. On this project, as there was only one contractor providing the installation and Bauder was the sole manufacturer for the supply of the waterproofing and the photovoltaic system, a single source product & workmanship guarantee was issued on successful completion covering both the waterproofing and attachment of the BauderSOLAR mounting system. This robust guarantee was possible due to the involvement of the manufacturer in the initial planning stages.


Project management

Bauder site technicians, product managers and technical managers attended site at the beginning of the project and on a weekly basis thereafter to provide additional guidance to operatives and to confirm any areas of more complex technical detailing were completed as per the drawings produced for onsite reference. Interim inspection reports were issued after every visit to illustrate a schedule of completed areas. Once all waterproofing works were completed, Bauder provided a full onsite final inspection enabling the issue of the guarantee.

Given the size of the project, it was imperative that consideration was given to the expected schedule of deliveries required during installation; always with the knowledge that such plans are likely to change at short notice due to unforeseeable events outside the control of the contractors and Bauder. Communication was key to ensure any delays were minimised and that work was unaffected wherever possible. Bauder brought in additional material from its manufacturing facility in Schwepnitz, Germany and placed it in one of its five UK warehouses to reduce lead times when certain products were required on site urgently.


Key features of the Thermoplan system

  • BBA durability statement for life expectancy in excess of 30 years.
  • FPO membranes can also be recycled at the end of their serviceable life.
  • Holds fire classification BROOF(t4) as stated in BBA Agrément Certificate 04/4120.
  • High Solar Reflective Index (SRI) which provided additional efficiency benefits to the photovoltaic array that was installed.
Book a Bauder CPD to explore the merits of single ply as a lightweight waterproofing system, the aesthetic finishes that can be created, and the upgrades supported such as solar PV and extensive green roofs.