There is a growing, legitimate concern in this country about our dwindling water resources, particularly as areas of the Southeast, Southwest and West continue to grow.
While population is growing, water resources are finite and engineers and architects are being pressed to come up with new solutions to meet water demands despite limited supplies. In areas where water is scarce, architects and builders are already looking for ways to tap rain water for non-potable uses including landscape irrigation and non-potable household uses such as toilet flushing and laundry needs. And they know that the efficiency of doing so depends on such factors as roof material, gutters, diversion amounts and design retention.
One of the most effective ways of reclaiming rainwater is through the use of an integrated system that ties in a metal roof, a leaf protection system and a rainwater harvesting and collection unit. PVDF-coated roofs reportedly do not leach and leaf protection systems, particularly hoods and covers, can help eliminate much of the debris that channels into conventional gutter systems before it reaches the filtering systems and containment tanks included in surface and underground rainwater harvesting systems.
Water conservation experts have known for some time that the smoother, cleaner, and more impervious the roof surface, the higher the water quality and the greater the amounts of water that can be collected. Pitched metal roofs lose negligible amounts of water, while a porous or rough roof surface may hold back some of the water that would otherwise make it into a recovery system. According to government numbers, concrete roofs can lose an average of about 10%, and built-up tar and gravel roofs can lose as much as 15%.