Architectural Facades and Rainscreens
The architectural world has experienced a profound change in trends ranging from building codes to technology applications. We are living in a technology-driven world. Every day, the technology tries to adjust to the continuous change in users’ needs and preferences. The change involved in architecture has led to the change in trends we are experiencing in architecture.
Facades and rainscreen systems have responded with a significant change that has left a landmark in the construction industry, as highlighted in this article.
Let’s find out how and why?
Facades and Architecture – History and Meaning
Architecture is the art or technique of designing and constructing structures to fulfill both the expressive and physical requirements.
Facade originates from the Latin word facia, meaning face. It was adopted in Italian, faccia then later to the french, facade. The world’s earliest meaning in English was faced, referring to the front section of the building. it later took a figurative sense referring to a way of appearance that gives a false perception.
The facade gives the general impression of the artificial or superficial appearance of something.
Architectural facade refers to the front section of a building with unique architectural treatment.
Types of Facade Systems
- Curtain walling
- Metallic cladding
- Precast concrete panels
- Insulated render
- Steel and glass facade
- Tile surface and stone veneer panels
- Weathertight veneer large board panels
Process of Designing a Facade
The process of designing a facade can be challenging. A professional such as an interior designer or an architect is required to design it. It involves making many decisions in various materials, colors, geometric lines, and shapes.
- Choice of style: There is a varied range of combinations that can create a style for your facade. You can have colonial, contemporary, rustic blends, or many more. The choice of technique should match your preference for your future home. The appeal for a particular style is based on its general aesthetic on the wall system or the combination of materials used.
- Choice of materials: The most common materials used in designing facades are concrete, bricks, metals, and wood. Every material produces a different result in sight, privacy, and security.
What to Consider When Designing a Facade
Be sure to consider the following factors when designing your facade.
- Security requirements: You require minimal security in a gated community than in a street residence. Your need for extra security will be lower. You may opt for a lower-level fence or an open facade.
- Privacy: Some demographic factors play a role in privacy needs. A more dense residence, for example, will require fewer or no windows open to the outside as opposed to a less dense home.
- Lighting requirements: Your choice of a facade should pave the way for enough natural lighting. In this case, you may decide to use large open windows.
- Functionality: The facade of your choice can be the front door alone or some section of a covered garage.
- Color: No one wants to see a sight with irritating colors. Always ensure your colors match the adjacent ones or with the finishing materials used. To get a compelling visual effect, try to mix and match different coatings. A contemporary designed house works best with a facade crafted from a neutral base color, like white or gray, blended with an accent color like red. Several solid colors like blue or orange look beautiful with a precise wall detail on the edge.
- Plants for facades: Imagine a garden on your main entrance or perhaps surrounding the water fountain. How attractive does it look? Apart from promoting aesthetic values, having this on your facade supports environmental sustainability and acts as a source of fresh air. Huh! consult a local nursery to choose the best plants or flowers to install on your walls. Choose a plant that won’t block sunlight. They can surround the edge of the walls. Finally, make sure you select a plant with low management requirements if you aren’t an expert in gardening.
- A facade should not only serve the aesthetic value but also provide balance and symmetry intended. Therefore, it is essential to position the columns, roads, and doors in the most aesthetic points following the building design guide.
- Modern facades: They employ materials like cement, aluminum, or metals. They are best when blended with wood either on the door or any other coatings. For depth, better info, and improved exterior interest, incorporate the geometric shapes of the components used.
Purpose of a Facade
- It eliminates water ingress: Wall cladding provides a leak-proof coating that acts as a water barrier, ensuring water and moisture do not penetrate the inside of the wall. The face-sealed system on the structure’s walls prevents water from seeping through. A complete face sealed system is challenging to achieve because of the complexity in the component’s interface. Again it’s exposure to weather. To overcome this, we use both primary(facade) and secondary defenses. If water penetrates the face, the secondary defense comes into play.
- Resisting wind action. Facades provide wind resistance by acting as a shield of the structure. They sustain the efforts of wind forces and transfer the impact to the structure.
- Controls air permeability. Airtight buildings that do not allow air leakage are the current trend in the construction industry. The air gap between the wall system controls air and air pressure flow into and out of the building, improving HVAC system control and limiting heat loss via the walls.
- Thermal insulation. The external facade system limits the reflection of solar radiation during hot weather conditions. This performance results in very minimal heat absorption. During cold weather conditions, the outer covering retains heat keeping the interior warm. Having the external facade ventilated reflects external noise, ensuring comfort.
- The facade allows for natural daylight and solar gain. Penetration of direct sunlight to the building ensures maximum natural light to the building gap. The sunlight also results in solar gain and glare.
- proProtectage. The facade is the outermost component in a structure that has a role in image modeling. They influence the choice of the designer, architect, or property owner on materials, color, and expression.
On What Part of the Building is a Facade?
A facade is one exterior side of the building, usually the front part; the side of the structure having the entrance (windows and doors). This usually is the side facing the city.
Rainscreen System and Cladding Explained
Rainscreen refers to the exterior cladding located away from the building’s external wall barrier(weather resistant). Air cavity forms below the cladding. This drains away any moisture that penetrates the cladding.
The freely flowing air between the clad and the wall speeds up the evaporation rate of residual moisture. Rainscreen has become the solution for architects, designers, and engineers who intend to have energy sufficiency and improved moisture management from the exterior of projects.
Cladding is components attached to the primary structure forming an external surface that is not part of the primary structure.
The cladding system is composed of the outer layer of:
- Cavity barriers
Minimal security in a Cladding does not contribute to the stability of the structure. However, it has a structural role of transferring snow loads, impact loads, wind loads, and weight to the structure’s main framework.
How Rainscreens Work
The rainscreen system sits away from the outer exterior wall creating air spaces between them and the cladding material. The air cavity eliminates the effect of air and moisture intrusion by draining them away. The freely flowing air between the wall and the cladding speeds up the evaporation rate of the remaining moisture. The main screen also provides exterior insulation hence an improved energy efficiency.
The design of the rainscreen allows it to limit potential water leakage to the barrier of the primary building envelope. This, therefore, limits the chances of water getting to the wall assembly.
Rainscreens and Moisture Management
- Knight wall systems isolated rainscreen form a unique design an airtight cavity limiting water and moisture reaching the building’s primary envelope. It also provides flexibility in cladding types that can be attached, thereby increasing energy efficiency.
- Rainscreens Provides unlimited design flexibility to the building’s exterior for mounting. There is a wide variety of cladding options that can be affixed to the structure. Among them are fiber cement, ACM, UHPC adhered stones veneer, modern composites, and stucco.
- Rainscreen prevents condensation and humidity. The continuous flow of air in the air cavity provides a protection layer and eliminates potential water penetration, which may slip through the cladding joints.
- Rainscreen extends the facade’s lifetime. the well-ventilated air cavity is kept dry, making the exterior cladding durable. Natural slate makes the facade last even longer.
- Rainscreen minimizes structural movements. The air cavity maintains a stable temperature in the building’s construction envelope. Thanks to this, the issues of cracks and structural movements are eliminated.
- Have very minimal maintenance requirements. rainscreen systems have almost zero maintenance requirements—especially a cladding system that withstands weather conditions.
- Rainscreen adds value to the home. The facade’s energy efficiency, durability, and low maintenance cost allow the initial investment to be recovered.