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The Evolution of the Building Envelope

Filed in Sponsored Content by on November 6, 2017 4 Comments

sheathingThrough the last few decades, the building industry has seen immense innovations that have contributed to safer, faster building practices and more energy-efficient homes.

Builders’ curiosity in bringing those innovations to their projects has propelled building structures into the 21st century. Now, home building design and engineering looks much different than it did in the 18th century.

Building Structures of the Past

Mortise and tenon joints have given way to today’s advanced wood framing, thanks to revolutionary products that have simplified the process and allowed builders to focus on innovation.

Buildings were once made out of millennium-old trees that allowed a large amount of energy to flow in and out of building structures. Without insulation, buildings dried out in the summer and contracted in the winter.

But as time passed, so did consumers’ desire for greater indoor comfort. To satisfy this new need, builders began to fill wall cavities with insulation, which started a domino effect. Drying slowed down as more thermal insulation was added, but builders could no longer turn a blind eye to water and air control.

The importance of control layers was a major shift in the industry. Filling wall cavities led to examining control layers in building enclosures and, ultimately, the prioritization of those layers to satisfy structural and fire safety ratings. With this newfound knowledge, builders began to learn the order of importance — water, air vapor, thermal management.

Building Envelope Priorities Now

cutawayCuriosity and demand for better building enclosures have propelled the industry forward. Water barriers weren’t considered an integral part of the wall system until recent history. Now, water management is the No.1 focus, followed by air management.

To meet these needs and simplify the building process, Huber Engineered Woods developed an exterior roof and wall system that not only solved water and air management challenges, but also made the installation process more efficient.

“Prior to launching a new product, we had to learn about the control layers ourselves and determine how to manage or mitigate the potential for water intrusion and the infiltration and exfiltration of air,” said Kurt Koch, vice president of engineering and innovation for Huber Engineered Woods. “We observed practices in the field and consulted with experts so that we could develop a system that would revolutionize wood-frame construction.”

Enter ZIP System® sheathing and tape. With its built-in water- and air-resistive barrier, ZIP System sheathing and tape integrates builders’ envelope needs with structural sheathing requirements. Originally adopted by progressive builders, ZIP System sheathing and tape is now used by a widespread audience from production and custom home builders to multifamily, mixed-use and remodeling specialists.

To learn more about how ZIP System sheathing and tape is revolutionizing the construction process for builders, visit ZIPRevolution.com. Be sure to visit us at Greenbuild booth #2117.

 

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Comments (4)

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  1. Jack Woerner says:

    Appreciate the article on building envelop improvements and would like your thoughts or opinions on larger and tighter homes and how to handle quality air distribution with energy efficiency

    • Ashley Moran says:

      Hi Jack,

      My name is Ashley, and I help with communications efforts for Huber Engineered Woods.

      Thanks so much for your interest in our article on the evolution of building envelopes. Our Product Engineering and Technical Services team can help answer any specific questions you may have regarding air distribution and tight building envelope design.

      They can be reached directly at 1.800.933.9220 Ext 2716 or by emailing techquestions@huber.com.

      Thank you,

      Ashley

  2. Mike Taylor says:

    Is the ZIP product available internationally? Will builders in Canada be incorporating this tech in new builds?

    • Ashley Moran says:

      Hi Mike,

      My name is Ashley Moran, and I help manage communications efforts for Huber Engineered Woods.

      ZIP System products are gaining popularity in Canada, especially with recent efforts by the Canadian Construction Materials Centre. For more information, you may contact the Canadian sales representative, Robert Rosen, at robert.rozon@huber.com or our technical services team at 1.800.933.9220 Ext 2716 or techquestions@huber.com.

      Thanks for your interest in Huber Engineered Woods products.

      Ashley

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