When Green Roofs Need Roof Vacuum Service


Removing Earth Fifty Feet Up

Commercial roof vacuum services has long gone hand-in-hand with removing various sized gravel media from roofs. With the growing popularity of green roofs and alternate uses of roofs that utilize soil, drainage media (gravel), and filter fabrics, the need for specialized, high power vacuum trucks has never been greater.

A Madison, Wisconsin apartment building needed to make changes to the rooftop greenspace. This involved a significant amount of dirt, gravel, and filter fabric to be removed from 56 galvanized steel containers on top of a five-story building. The complex used these containers for rooftop gardens. Repairs needed to be made to the roof membrane below the planters. Before the repairs could be made, the material needed to be removed from the planters so that they could be temporarily taken off the roof area. Vacuuming was selected as the most efficient method of removing the material.

Rising to a Solution

Because of the distances involved, the project required the use of one of Great Lakes Power Vac’s fleet of high-power vacuum trucks, along with the experience and know-how to accomplish the challenging task. Once the property management team met with GLPV for a site visit, a solution was devised.

Great Lakes Power Vac decided to utilize the stairwell of an adjacent parking structure to safely transport the vacuum hoses to the roof, thus avoiding the need for an expensive crane.

The project began with Great Lakes Power Vac holding an on-site safety review and creating a project exclusion zone. GLPV then transported the hoses to the roof and lowered one end of the hose to the ground, where it was connected to the vacuum truck.

Once the hoses were in place, the team began removing the soil and gravel from the rooftop planters. Each of the 56 steel troughs were 92 inches long by 24 inches deep by 36 inches wide, and were filled with planting soil, clean gravel, and filter fabric. In total, more than 95 cubic yards of collected materials were taken off-site for safe and compliant disposal.

Trust Your Roof Vacuuming Projects to Great Lake Power Vac

From “green roofs” to traditional commercial built up roof systems, your project needs the experience and expertise brought by Great Lakes Power Vac. By leveraging GLPV’s expertise in various roof vacuuming processes, you are ensured that the project is done safely, cleanly, and efficiently. GLPV’s extensive inventory of state-of-the-art equipment combined with experienced personnel means the project is done right the first time—every time.

For a planned rooftop project or unplanned emergency repair, contact one of the staff experts or call Great Lakes Power Vac at (262) 542-5542.


Contact us today to learn more about our services or to find out how we can help your organization.