The right air barrier system, like Barricade® Building Wrap, is a vital element of a building enclosure. The right air barrier system is needed to ensure energy efficiency, the building’s integrity, and the indoor air quality of the structure. The right air barrier is also crucial to optimizing the performance of the HVAC and the overall comfort of the occupants.
A high-quality air barrier controls airflow, is continuous over the entire building enclosure, can resist damage during and after construction, is durable over the lifetime of the structure, and is compliant with the most recent codes and standards.
Barricade® Building Wrap contains all the needed elements of the right air barrier. Four reasons that Barricade® Building Wrap is the right air barrier is because it is resistant to air infiltration, controls heat loss and gains, and creates a healthy and durable building or home. Notably, Barricade® Building Wrap meets and surpasses the demands of the 2018 IECC R402.4.1 and C402.5.
An effective air barrier resists air infiltration, and the moisture associated with it, through the wall system. Moisture may enter a wall system by air flow through the process of thermal convection. Thermal convection happens when warm air (which contains moisture) outside the wall system, is pulled towards the cooler air inside the wall system.
Preventing air transported moisture from getting to the interior of a wall system is vital because when the warm vapor touches the cold interior walls, the vapor turns to liquid by condensation. A strong air barrier resists the flow of air and minimizes moisture intrusion by convection.
High durability in an air barrier is also essential to preventing air infiltration. Any defects or damage to the barrier either during or after installation will diminish its performance. The right air barrier has the strength to remain intact during and after construction.
A successful and continuous air barrier controls unwanted heat loss and gains. Controlling heat flow is critical to a building’s energy efficiency and the comfort of the occupants. Importantly, an air barrier must minimize or restrict heat loss and gains through conduction, convection, and radiation.
An air barrier controls indoor air quality by ensuring evaporation of the moisture within the wall system and preventing infiltration of pollutants; both of which are unhealthy to the occupants of the building. A buildup of moisture within a wall system can lead to mold and rot. Mold is a problem because it diminishes the indoor air quality of a building by producing irritants and allergens. Furthermore, rot can destroy the integrity of a building. The permeability of an air barrier allows moisture to evaporate and is vital to ensure the indoor air quality and integrity of a building.
Permeability is a crucial element of an air barrier because water can invade a wall system to escape. Water can get inside a wall system when rain leaks through the building envelope, through conduction and convection, and from the inside of the building if the HVAC system does not appropriately remove the moisture.
Moisture vapor permeability of an air barrier is critical so the moisture can diffuse and not get trapped in the wall system.
The International Energy Conservation Code® (IECC®) building energy codes and standards set minimum efficiency requirements for new and renovated buildings, which assures reduced energy use and emissions over the structure’s lifetime. The 2018 IECC defines the energy efficiency requirements for both residential and commercial buildings.
The 2018 IECC® defines an air barrier as one or more materials joined together in a continuous manner to restrict or prevent the passage of air through the building thermal envelope and its assemblies.
Location of the air barrier criteria for residential structures is in chapter four of the 2018 IECC (Table R402.4.1.1). The general requirements are a continuous air barrier shall be installed in a building envelope, the exterior thermal envelope contains a continuous barrier, and breaks for joints in the air barrier shall be sealed.
Location of the air barrier criteria for commercial structures is in section C402.5.1 of the 2018 IECC. All climate zones but 2B require air barriers. The 2018 IECC requires for commercial buildings a continuous air barrier throughout the building thermal envelope.
Furthermore, the air barriers shall be permitted to be located on the inside or outside of the building envelope, situated within the assemblies composing the envelope, or any combination thereof. Also, the air barrier shall comply with Sections C402.5.1.1 and C4188.8.131.52.
Barricade® Building Wrap is an air- and water-resistant building barrier that stops air infiltration, prevents heat loss and gains, protects air quality and a structure’s durability. It also meets current codes and standards.
Barricade® building wraps offer the essential elements of the right air barrier: resistance to air infiltration, control over heat loss and gains, and assurance of a healthy and durable structure. Importantly, Barricade® building wraps provide continuous control of airflow over the entire building enclosure and resists damage during and after construction.
Barricade® Building Wrap ensures a building is energy-efficient, durable and has good indoor air quality. For the right air barrier, choose Barricade®.