Water infiltration within exterior envelope components can be potentially devastating to a building’s integrity, causing damage to interior finishes and, if left unattended, to the structure itself. Often, even with today’s sophisticated wall forensic review methods, discovering the source of infiltration after the wall is in service can be a monumental challenge. This is why Tidewater Glazing advocates laboratory performance testing for water resistance, air infiltration, and structural integrity on all projects.
It is important that a laboratory specimen, or mockup, include all façade components in order to properly test and assess the total envelope construction. It does no good to test the curtain wall and not test the cavity wall or precast to which the curtain wall is sealed. Thoroughly testing the entire assemblies will validate the design of contiguous tie-ins, air seals, sealant joints, and other critical elements of the wall. Discovering inadequacies at the lab allows all parties an opportunity to remediate weaknesses and provide a more resistant construction.
A thorough test will include both dynamic and static procedures which comply with standards developed by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). While at the lab, other forms of testing such as thermal and acoustic can also be performed if those areas of performance are important to the client or end user.
Tidewater Glazing has constructed and tested scores of laboratory specimens over the years, and we have always found benefit in doing so.
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Hanover, Maryland 21076