Why Steel-Sided Buildings And Homes Require A Weather-Resistant Barrier
Many metal building homes and commercial buildings are constructed with a combination of materials, including steel siding, that can be susceptible to moisture infiltration. This can lead to condensation, wood rot, mold, and mildew in the wall system of a steel-sided building or home.
What Will Moisture Do To Your Building?
Condensation occurs when warm air (or vapor) enters a cooler space and travels towards the warmer interior wall system. Moisture within the wall system can also result from water leaking through the joints and cracks in the wall framing or other areas of the building that are not properly sealed. Moisture can eat away at the finished materials of a steel-sided building or home and cause problems such as rot, mold, and mildew that affect occupants and the integrity of the structure. These issues can be costly, time-consuming, and even dangerous to the health of those inside the structure or in the surrounding area.
How Do Weather-Resistant Barriers Work?
The best way to protect the interior of your steel-sided building or home is to use a high-quality weather-resistant barrier (WRB) that is both air- and moisture-resistant, permeable, UV-resistant, and easy to install. A high-performing WRB meets or exceeds the requirements of the International Building Code and the International Residential Code for water resistance and vapor permeability.
Weather barriers are mechanically fastened or liquid applied membranes that prevent bulk water and air-carried moisture from entering a building’s exterior wall system. These products help control the diffusion of moisture, and can be used to improve a building’s energy efficiency by improving indoor air quality (IAQ). In addition to blocking moisture from entering a building, weather barriers also provide an effective drainage plane that protects sensitive materials from direct exposure to rain. The best weather barriers are also permeable, allowing water vapor to escape and help walls dry more quickly.
Types Of Weather-Resistant Barriers
The type of membrane that is most suitable for a specific application depends on the building’s location, its design, and the materials involved. The most common types of weather-resistant barriers are asphalt felt and house wrap. Both are available as roll-on or roll-off options and can be installed by professionals. And they can be applied to new or existing framing systems and provide an air barrier by forming a seamless seam-free coating that is waterproof but vapor permeable. Always keep in mind that a good WRB will serve as an integral part of the building envelope and should be chosen by specifiers, contractors, and the end users for its ability to perform as desired throughout the lifespan of a project.
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