Challenging limits, finding solutions: the inspiring rehabilitation of CaetanoBus’s roofing


At the end of 2023, we successfully completed one of our most challenging projects to date: the rehabilitation of the CaetanoBus factory roof.


This project was not only notable for its size – although close to 20,000 m2, we have handled larger projects – but also for the complexity and execution risks it presented.


Despite the challenges, we found the ideal solution for this project. Continue reading to discover how we overcame each obstacle.


The final result of the rehabilitation


A team equipped for any challenge


The execution of this project was truly demanding due to the complexity of the various roof planes, the steeply inclined ovalized areas, and the presence of numerous elements penetrating the waterproofing, such as chimneys and the posts of the metal walkways. This endeavor included the installation of new walkways and watertight anchoring points for their fixation, compatible with the TPO Köster waterproofing membrane.


Additionally, the height of the parapets, reaching up to 5 meters, was a true test of our skills, which we successfully overcame.


The high risks during execution arose from the pre-existing roofing system, which was several decades old. It consisted of a fragile simple corrugated metal sheet, interspersed with large translucent areas. To ensure safety during the work and provide a solid base for our rehabilitation process, it was necessary to reinforce these translucent areas with metal sheets.


This project held special significance for us. Not only because of the technical challenges we faced, but also due to the privilege of collaborating with a client we deeply admire, for their professional values and principles that we share, and which motivate us to reach new heights of excellence.




Let’s explore more about the Salvador Caetano Group?


The Salvador Caetano Group has seven decades of history dedicated to the industry and the automotive sector. Its strategy involves reinventing new business models and developing services aligned with customer needs, without ever compromising its long history and focus on innovation. Continuous evolution on all fronts inspires ongoing improvement, keeping the group at the forefront.


The Salvador Caetano group hub in Vila Nova de Gaia


Currently, Salvador Caetano comprises over 100 companies across three continents, operating in various business areas: industry, automotive distribution and retail, and services. Among these, notable sectors include mobility, industrial and workshop equipment, automotive distribution and retail, as well as aerospace and CaetanoBus – the largest bus manufacturer in Portugal exporting worldwide.


The latest project of this group involves a partnership with Stadler, a Swiss manufacturer of railway equipment, to create a train factory in Portugal. This strategic agreement aims to revolutionize mobility in the country and will be complemented by the construction of a maintenance workshop in Guifões, in the district of Porto.




The rehabilitation of CaetanoBus’ roof: a project of determination and innovation



Due to the fragility of the single-sheet roofing, we opted for the “miraculous” fastening solution known as a flower rivet to secure the large-sized boards of polyisocyanurate (PIR) thermal insulation, which ensured thermal comfort for the building and a solid base for our rehabilitation solution.


Therefore, we decided to adopt a final adhered waterproofing system, consisting of Köster Membrane Adhesive polyurethane adhesive and Köster TPO F membrane. This membrane, besides having a fiberglass mesh embedded in the center, also features an inner side coated with 250g polyester, allowing the adhesive to bond to the membrane, solidifying it to the PIR boards and providing greater overall system resistance.




In this project, we also reinforced the translucent areas by covering them with metal panels. Thus, 256 solar tubes were installed throughout the roof to ensure natural light with the desired efficiency for our rehabilitation system.


The tubular natural lighting system we implemented offers several advantages:

  • Guaranteed total waterproofing, with accessories that provide secure finishes to waterproofing systems;
  • Elimination of thermal bridges and consequently the associated greenhouse effect;
  • Maintenance of 100% efficiency in natural lighting over the years;
  • Blocking of harmful UVA and UVB rays;
  • Ability to transport light up to 15 meters with minimal loss of luminosity.


This is a solution that we consider indispensable whenever there is a need to incorporate natural light into our rehabilitations. If you wish to explore more on the topic, we invite you to read this article.


Installation of solar tubes, seen from both the exterior and interior of the building



Innovation and excellence in every project


The outcome of this project exceeded expectations. From the consistency of the rehabilitation solution and the perfect impermeability of the waterproofing system to the unparalleled efficiency of thermal insulation and natural lighting system, every detail deserved our utmost dedication.


But what truly fills us with pride are the testimonials from CaetanoBus employees. Their satisfaction in describing the comfort of the building is infectious! The various water leaks that have been eliminated, the cozy temperature, and the luminous environment boost productivity.


We strive to leave a lasting mark on every project. A legacy that inspires all who collaborate with us!




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