In the case of new construction, curtain walls have come to be an icon of contemporary architecture. Apart from rendering structural stability to buildings, curtain walls also serve as a barrier to protect building models. Curtain walls also offer various long-term commercial benefits, such as reduced repair and maintenance costs. In the long run, they prove to be an excellent investment. So, what is a curtain wall? Let us look at how curtain walls work and what the advantages of installing one are.
First and foremost, curtain walls need regular maintenance and cleaning. If not, they can deteriorate and develop mold. Curtain walls should be inspected for leaks and deflection on a regular basis. They also need to have gaskets and sealants replaced every ten to fifteen years. The installation process is time-consuming and expensive, and regular inspection is essential to ensure that the curtain wall is in good shape. Besides, curtain walls should be installed according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.
The most common material used for curtain walls is fabric. Fabric is less expensive and less permanent than other materials and can be changed easily after installation. Another advantage of fabric is its low density. Compared to aluminum or steel, fabrics are lighter and easier to handle. They also tend to be more lightweight, making them less of a structural consideration. They are also easier to handle in harsh conditions. As a result, curtain walls are not only beautiful and functional but are also an excellent choice for any home or commercial building.
Curtain walls are typically higher than storefront windows and are used for buildings that are eleven or twelve stories tall. Their height is largely dependent on the type of framing members used in the structure of the building. Typically, curtain walls are installed on site, with the framing members being fabricated in a shop. However, curtain walls are not as strong as storefront windows, and require regular maintenance. In addition, they have noticeable joint lines across each mullion.
The main purpose of curtain wall systems is to protect the interior of a building from various natural phenomena. Some of these include extreme temperatures, failure of wall components, and mold and mildew growth. Fortunately, curtain walls have many more uses than just beauty. These structures also protect the interior from various problems, including structural failure and interior environmental control. You should know what they do before you install them. You can start your research by looking for examples of curtain wall installation.
The most common application of curtain walls is in commercial buildings. They allow businesses to present dynamic displays, while allowing clients to see into the building before entering. Curtain systems are excellent for making a first impression on customers and improving the overall aesthetic value of the building. Furthermore, they are lighter and less expensive than masonry, making them an excellent option for budget-conscious builders. Curtain walls can also be an ideal choice for exterior design.
Curtain wall systems are comprised of three parts: the frame, the wall panel, and the weatherproofing system. While steel frames were once used, now aluminum extrusions are used in most applications. Glass infill gives a more aesthetic appeal to curtain walls, and is also beneficial for daylighting. But despite the obvious benefits of glass infill, this material is problematic for regulating solar heat gain and visual comfort. Other common infill materials include metal panels, stone veneer, and operable windows.
Curtain wall systems are manufactured in units. The individual components are shipped to the construction site and assembled. They are then installed. They allow more room for error and customization. Stick systems are flexible and easy to integrate with other types of systems. They can be easily modified on-site for a variety of projects. They also offer good quality, but they are more expensive than stick systems. So, before you start your construction project, consult an expert before choosing a system.
Historically, exterior walls have been largely load-bearing structures. As a result, they imposed restrictions on design options and material selection. But, advances in structural steel and reinforced concrete made it possible to replace load-bearing walls with non-load-bearing walls. Those innovations opened the door to a wide range of design choices, including the use of lightweight materials such as glass. With these advances, curtain wall systems were born.