The most important part of your cladding solution.
For most buildings, water is the enemy. Bulk moisture in the form of liquid water, snow, or ice needs to be kept on the exterior to prevent structural damage and degradation. But water is very mobile and keeping it out presents a challenge. Many scientific studies have taken place over the last 30-40 years related to building envelope failures caused by moisture intrusion and with good reason. According to the WBDG, “Internal moisture degradation is a leading cause of premature failure of building envelopes.” As a result of these studies, experts like Dr. Joseph Lstiburek have determined that simply trying to keep water out isn’t enough. Moisture will get into the building envelope through cracks and other imperfections in the veneer, and that water must be drained out.
The leaky condo crisis in Canada, which saw an estimated $4 billion in damage throughout B.C. alone, had contributed to the implantation of the rain screen system. Water damage had affected over 900 buildings and 31,000 individual housing units built between the late 1980s and early 2000s, establishing it as the most extensive and most costly reconstruction of housing stock in Canadian history.
The City of Vancouver and other B.C. municipalities began to implement their own prescriptive requirements for building envelope design and construction in multi-unit residential buildings, even before the Barrett Commission's 1998 report was issued and the provincial government amended the B.C. Building Code. The two most significant items were requirements for rainscreen construction of exterior walls and professional certification of the design and implementation of the design in the construction.
A rainscreen is the weather-facing surface of an exterior wall that stands off from the moisture-resistant surface of the main wall. There is a gap or cavity between the siding and the main wall which prevents infiltration of moisture into the main wall assembly and allows air to circulate between. By 1997, Vancouver and neighboring Richmond and New Westminster enacted requirements for this construction technology in residential construction.
Rainscreen wall systems protect exterior walls from moisture intrusion by including a drainage gap on the water resistive barrier drainage plane. Ventilating the wall provides even greater protection and the capacity to dry.
SCG Group ensures your home is protected by using state-of-the-art rainscreen building technology behind each of our siding products.