One of the sustainable design dilemmas for architects and green builders alike is striking a balance between energy savings, construction costs, life cycle costs and how to design and build such a structure. Lately we have seen lots of great design concepts being developed on better ways to insulate the exterior building envelope. A recurring solution we see in many of these designs, particularly in retro-fit and renovation projects, is to place an extra layer of insulation (usually a foam type insulation) on the outside of the structure.
Whether your project is new construction or renovation, a commercial or residential project, when you are using exterior foam insulation, a critical design decision becomes how to deal with the fenestration and trimming out the window and door openings to meet your design goals. The construction challenge then becomes how to install siding materials directly over foam insulation. Climate-Shield has developed several solutions for you to design and build in an energy efficient manner and still maintain long lasting and effective structural integrity even if you are building in a hurricane-prone area.
If you are installing foam insulation up to 1” thick on the exterior of your structure, The Climate-Shield Rain Screen Accessory Channel (CSAC8) is a highly effective means for providing a sturdy, structural member to fasten your rain screen clips to the structure. Depending on whether the foam insulation is installed over structural sheathing or non-structural sheathing, fasten the rain screen attachment channel over the foam insulation appropriately to your structure.
When installing a wood rain screen system over exterior insulation that is more than 1” thick, the Climate-Shield Rain Screen Z-Girt is often selected to provide a strong attachment for the rain screen clips. The z-girt provides an adequate flange for attachment to the structure beneath the foam, as well as a flange for the rain screen clip on top of the foam. The Climate-Shield rain screen z-girt is made from marine grade aluminum, which will have no galvanic action with the clips or rain screen attachment screws. The Climate-Shield z-girt can be made to work with whichever thickness of insulation you decide on for your design and structure.
A SIP panel is typically designed with exterior insulation foam on the inside and the plywood or OSB panel on the outside. While a SIP panel may not be the choice for every rainscreen project, it is probably the best method we have found for achieving energy goals, design goals and structural integrity goals. The additional benefit of using a SIP panel with the Climate-Shield Rain Screen System is the time, material and labor savings during installation. This method of installing a wood rain screen is undoubtedly the simplest, most efficient and cost effective way of installing a wood rain screen using the Climate-Shield Rain Screen system.
We recently came across an SIP product manufactured by Huber called Zip System R-Sheathing that looks like an exceptional product for use with the Climate-Shield rain screen system. It’s a multi-layered system that starts with R-Board adhered to a structural panel with additional layers of water barrier and air barrier on the outside so it will save significant amounts of construction time and labor costs. We especially like the fact that it provides the structural sheathing on the outside to expedite the installation of the Climate-Shield rain screen system. Since no furring strips are required when using the Climate-Shield rain screen system over a structural panel, builders will also realize significant material cost savings, time savings and labor cost savings when installing the rain screen system.
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