Understanding today’s coatings for claddings

Even those best-designed, well-constructed buildings degrade if the appropriate exterior coating and finishes are not applied and maintained in a timely manner—this is especially true for demanding environments. Fortunately, there is a wide-ranging array of high-performance architectural coatings available today that can not only safeguard a building’s value, but...
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Caring for glazed architectural terra cotta

One of the most prevalent materials found on historic buildings, glazed architectural terra cotta was popularized in the late 19th century as a versatile, lightweight, economical, and adaptable alternative to stone. Through the 1930s, the sculptural properties of terra cotta gave rise to diverse architectural styles, including the Chicago...
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Critical Bonds

Deborah Slaton, David S. Patterson, AIA, and Jeffrey N. Sutterlin, PE

In the southeastern United States, a 12-story office building, constructed in the early 1930s, experienced uncontrolled water leakage through its mass masonry exterior wall. As this was attributed to weathering of the existing mortar joints in...

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Energy-efficient Design with Masonry Construction

Masonry materials and wall systems, with their inherent thermal mass characteristics, provide designers with many options to achieve energy-efficient designs. This article illustrates examples of wall configurations that exceed national building code requirements and high-performance standards, taking into account factors like increased R-values for non-mass opaque walls (prescriptive design),...
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